New York Times on the Web Forums
Technology has always found its greatest consumer in a nation's
war and defense efforts. Since the last attempts at a "Star Wars"
defense system, has technology changed considerably enough to make
the latest Missile Defense initiatives more successful? Can such an
application of science be successful? Is a militarized space
inevitable, necessary or impossible?
Read Debates, a
new Web-only feature culled from Readers' Opinions, published every
(33 previous messages)
- 07:48pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#34
It is also possible that Paul Wolfowitz is incorrect -- and may
have a background, and inclinations, inferior to some others that
might be hoped for for this particular set of circumstances. --
Eisenhower's for instance.
Look, Paul Wolfowitz is the distinguished son of a distinguished
mathematician, a student of Alan Bloom's, a diplomat much identified
with patterns that may not be ideal for this negotiation -- and a
man deeply identified with setting up patterns that close off
He's very proud of an exemplar of those pattens (or in any event,
Sam Nunn is, since it is on his law firm's web site) - the
NUNN-WOLFOWITZ TASK FORCE REPORT: INDUSTRY "BEST PRACTICES"
REGARDING EXPORT COMPLIANCE PROGRAMS http://188.8.131.52/library/pdf/nunnwolfowitz.pdf
July 25, 2000
That piece is a treatise on restricting conversation - - not what
the North Koreans, who tend toward the paranoid, the crazy, the
desperate, and the primative, need in a negotiation.
Alan Bloom would be lousy with the North Koreans, too.
And yes, I think Wolfowitz and his people could get some
engineering wrong, as well.
- 07:51pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#35
I think that the system is, by tactical standards, as "devoid of
merit as a herringfish is of fur" - - and if you'd like to discuss
why in detail, why don't you download the Coyle Report http://www.fas.org/spp/starwars/program/nmdcoylerep.pdf
and we can get down to cases.
- 07:59pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#36
Wow, I get that you have great respect for Paul W's intellectual
lineage but if I may sum up, what you are saying is Paul W. and his
DOD friends are simply "mistaken" on NMD's technical merits despite
all the resources at their finger-tips??
As for "paranoid, crazy and primitive" NKs, we can't really
expect them to know what Paul W., despite his distinguished
intellectual pedigree, fails to realize? So if NKs have a half a
brain of normal non-pedigreed human being, they would have to deploy
at least 100 ICBMs, the supposedly theoretical number that can
overcome so called NMD defense, to feel secure that they would not
be nuked by Bush one of these days? I mean would that be a logical
reasoning from NK's point of view (assuming they are completely
"primitive" not to even recognize that point)??
Btw, I am not really good at long verages so if I didn't get the
gist of what you are trying to say....excuse moir
- 08:12pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#37
Why don't you pull down the Coyle Report, and we can talk about
Perhaps it may take a little more common ground -- basic laws of
reflection, absorbtion, black body radiation, and some simple ideas
about feedback - - but nothing fancy. There are some basic rules
about the sending, recieving, and reflection of EM radiation that
To assume that the midcourse correction system has a "high
probability of success" you have to assume that the N. Koreans are
1. Smart enough to build missiles
.. but nevertheless
2. Too stupid to build countermeasures.
That is a dreary assumption.
I recall an old ad, circa maybe 1890, that advertised a Whiskey
made by "honest North Carolina people -- who wouldn't dilute
their whiskey, even if they knew how."
My people, who are from North Carolina, always smiled at that old
If you're worrying about the odds of missile defense, assumptions
like the one in that ad aren't so funny.
- 08:22pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#38
I think I made it clear that I do agree with your presupposition
that NMD program is not technically feasible. I was simply asking
whether Paul W and his friends are deliberately lying to the
American people to get the funding going or if they are honestly
mistaken on the technical merits of the program. I for one have a
hard time believing that they are somehow mistaken on it....I will
try to read the report sometime...
But the fact remains that the logical NK response (unless they
are so primitive not to realize the announced threats to their
existence) would be to increase the number of their warheads and
delivery vehicles, no? (of course assuming they are even capable of
producing ICBMs tipped with nukes, which I know you do not
New York Times on the Web Forums