The US will build the first stages of a missile defense system in Alaska 
over the next couple of years.  Ideally the system will evolve into 
technology that will prevent offensive ICBMs from attacking North 

Countries that were vying to enter the ICBM game have cause for 
concern--PRC, North Korea, Iran, Iraq, former Soviet countries and their 
more affluent friends.  They're staking potentially huge investments in 
an offensive infrastructure in which they can now place little 

The problem with ground-launched missiles, as the Russians found, is 
that low-orbit satellite monitors can watch their every move.  And 
expensive missiles sitting in their silos become a big maintenance 
liability.  You can't just park 'em and forget 'em until you're ready to 
fire.  Nor can you pretend that you're just getting ready to launch a 
weather satellite.

Defensive measures based on technology like the relatively inexpensive 
Patriot missile are a deterrent to the development of offensive strike 
ICBMs, even if they have only a limited effectiveness.  Nobody will be 
as anxious to pass the point of no return in firing off missiles if they 
might get shot down.  After a missile is launched, it is impossible to 
disguise the source or the offensive intent.

What good is an interceptor defense against offensive weapons launched 
by terrorist crazies?  Maybe not much.  But probably better than 
nothing.  At least with the initial development effort, the technology 
can be tested and improved.  It is worth noting that the technology 
evolved not at all while naysayers argued against it.

Mij Ebaboc

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