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    Missile Defense

Russian military leaders have expressed concern about US plans for a national missile defense system. Will defense technology be limited by possibilities for a strategic imbalance? Is this just SDI all over again?

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rshowalter - 10:11am Mar 25, 2001 EST (#1476 of 1478) Delete Message
Robert Showalter

In rshowalter 3/23/01 5:28pm I wrote:

"almarts_2001 I think the amount of good will that is latent, close to the surface, wanting to come out, in American and Europe is very great. Many -- and this is perhaps most true of people in the more literary parts of our culture, would LOVE to see a prosperous, happy, vibrant, RUSSIAN Russia - - not an imitation of the US - but a different cuture - doing well, and interfacing with other cultures. "

but there are problems. rshowalter 3/23/01 5:29pm
rshowalter 3/23/01 5:30pm

"I'll speak of "expected rates of return" -- as in compound rates of interest -- and talk about the key thing -- which is the total RISK DISCOUNT -- make Russia more reliable, and you will RADICALLY shift its marketability upwards.

rshowalter 3/23/01 5:36pm
rshowalter 3/23/01 5:38pm
rshowalter 3/23/01 5:41pm
rshowalter 3/23/01 5:43pm
rshowalter 3/23/01 5:51pm
rshowalter 3/23/01 5:53pm
rshowalter 3/23/01 5:56pm
rshowalter 3/23/01 5:58pm

rshowalter - 10:16am Mar 25, 2001 EST (#1477 of 1478) Delete Message
Robert Showalter

All concerned need to learn much more about the nature of deception, and the ubiquity of it in human affairs, so we can be less indignant and more capable of complex competition and cooperation that stays under control. rshowalter 3/24/01 12:14pm

A lot of information is needed for decision and interaction -- and the only reasonable way to proceed, in the overwhelming majority of cases, requires that the overwhelming majority of communication happen "in clear."

rshowalter - 10:24am Mar 25, 2001 EST (#1478 of 1478) Delete Message
Robert Showalter

And lies and mistakes are dangerous because we are dealing with systems far too complex for us to fully understand or predict.

We are ALL much too likely to trust our judgement, dealing with sociotechnical systems that are THOUSANDS and MILLIONS of TIMES too complicated for us to predict in detail.

I know something about coupling problems, and crosseffects -- believe me -- most sociotechnical systems, including ANY likely to concern a political leader, have to be evaluated and changed by successive stages of feedback, with plenty of care, and with mistakes expected.

The hubris of the intelligence communities on both sides wrenches my guts, and is terribly, terribly dangerous.

And expensive.

And, I'd like to say, childish, but usaully children don't make fools of themselves in quite this sort of way.

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