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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 - 09:11am Aug 3, 2001 EST (#7737 of 7773) Delete Message
Robert Showalter showalte@macc.wisc.edu

But sometimes, when it matters enough, on something that can be checked enough ways -- people come to agree.

Given a desire to get at the truth. Often that's easiest on technical matters. The fact, for instance, that light from a lasar beam cannot be perfectly collinear can be understood by anyone who just takes the time to think about it. The fact that light optics systems aren't perfect can be understood by anyone who just takes the time to think about it, and look at details. Given the willingness to pay attention.

And it is facts like these which rule out lasars as "death ray" weapons.

Even without the fatal problem of reflective coatings.

The issues of geometry and physics involved are simple, once the decisions to look at the numbers related to the physical situation is made.

Only so much is possible. If you're way beyond what can reasonably be done, in many ways, there are clear conclusions to be drawn.

And once a job is plainly impossible, it makes sense not to fund it -- to devote money and human resources to something else that could do some good.

rshowalt - 07:20am Aug 4, 2001 EST (#7738 of 7773)

My main computer has been disabled for now.

That computer uses a fast cable connection. It has a "protection" program. But for a long time the machine has penetrated - a fact I've been made aware of in various ways. When I post here, my "protection" program often shows an attempt to penetrate my machine within seconds. Sometimes, my machine is shut down for me, frozen for me, or made to malfunction otherwise, in ways that let me know that I'm not unnoticed by some people with capacities.

Today, I can't start the machine. I get:

"Invalid system disk - replace the disk, and then press any key.

that isn't due to having a floppy in the A drive - when I put one in, I get

"Invalid system disk - replace the disk, and then press any key."

I don't know how long it will take to get this sorted out, but don't feel that it can be a random error.

I'm pretty well backed up - - and have search capabilities other than the fine search capability that used to be here -- and I hope returns.

But this is a nuisance. From a civil liberties perspective, I think it is worse than that.

rshowalt - 07:54am Aug 4, 2001 EST (#7739 of 7773)

North Korea to Stick to Missile Moratorium By REUTERS http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/world/international/russia-korea-north-mo.html

Filed at 6:47 a.m. ET

"MOSCOW, Aug 4 (Reuters) - North Korea's Kim Jong-il told Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday that Pyongyang will stick to a moratorium on missile launches until 2003, Russian news agencies quoted a senior presidential aide as saying.

"Sergei Prikhodko, Putin's top foreign policy adviser, said the assurance had been given during talks and the signing of a declaration stating that Pyongyang's missile programme was not intended to threaten the security of other nations.

" ``North Korea is prepared to adhere to its stated 2003 moratorium on launching ballistic missiles,'' Russian agencies quoted Prikhodko as saying.

" The United States says it intends to build a missile defence shield to protect it from attacks from ``rogue states'' like North Korea. Russia and China are key opponents of the plan, saying it could lead to a new arms race.

" A key part of the Moscow Declaration signed by Kim and Putin on Saturday insisted that Washington's fears were groundless.

" ``North Korea asserts that its missile programme is peaceful in nature and does not present a threat to nations respecting North Korea's sovereignty,'' RIA news agency quoted the declaration as saying.

" ``The Russian Federation and North Korea, recognising that international relations should consistently guarantee independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, support the right of every state to the same degree of safety,'' RIA quoted the pact as saying.

This is progress.

lunarchick - 09:57am Aug 4, 2001 EST (#7740 of 7773)
lunarchick@www.com

Sign on the dotted line.

lunarchick - 10:34am Aug 4, 2001 EST (#7741 of 7773)
lunarchick@www.com

... also complained that adding more nations to NATO, especially the Baltic nations of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, seemed like an effort to isolate Russia with something like "Stalin's fence," as he called the Iron Curtain ...

lunarchick - 10:38am Aug 4, 2001 EST (#7742 of 7773)
lunarchick@www.com

In the name of the father : slept in 1984

rshowalt - 11:52am Aug 4, 2001 EST (#7743 of 7773)

Russian Tries to Pierce Missile Shield With Charm by ADAM CLYMER http://www.nytimes.com/2001/08/04/international/europe/04MISS.html

PALO ALTO, Calif., Aug. 3 While his colleagues in Russia were preparing for another traditional diplomatic clash over missile defenses next week in Washington, Oleg D. Chernov was trying a different tack "P.R."

Sensible, open approach --- the sort of openness Americans could be proud of. Russia has its problems, but Chernov's approach to persuasion - based on give and take, and willingness to discuss what is true , looks good.

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