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    Missile Defense

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?

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gisterme - 08:26pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#39 of 47)

rshow55 3/1/02 7:03pm

"...Consider two groups, weapons drawn, confronting each other. In order for a surrender or a peace or a victory or a defeat to occur with stability, there has to be clear communication, and for things to work, people who fear and distrust each other have to deal with each other with good enough stability so that things don't fall apart..."

So you're saying that while Hitler's armies were marching across Russia, all the Russians needed to do was communicate better with the Germans? Ummm...I don't think so. Sometimes situations exist where meaningful communication is impossible because one side or the other is not rational. I'd say that rationality by both parties is necessary for meaningful communication between them.

rshow55 3/1/02 6:57pm

"...If the United States could, and would, explain its national interest -- distinct from the interests of its military-industrial complex, and explain how its interests fit in the interconnected world we live in -- and do it honestly, and in ways that other nations could check, it could satisfy every reasonable security need it has, without unreasonable or unacceptably unpopular uses of force.

"...The rest of the world, collectively, and in detail, would try hard to accomodate US needs, if it understood them, and could reasonably believe and respect them..."

Do you suppose that any amount of explanation, however honest, by the US of it's interests would have prevented the September 11 massacre? Highest-level US interests are simple to define:

1. We want freedom to earn prosperity for ourselves at the individual level and to see everybody else have the opportunity to do the same. Prosperous nations consist of prosperous people. So prosperity at a national level follows from widespread success at the individual level.

2. History has shown that the only way to achieve truly wide-spread prosperity at the individual level is via a free market economy. Likewise within the brotherhood of nations at the world-wide level.

3. We've seen that acheivement of widespread individual prosperity is impossible in the absence of individual liberty. Therefore we support individual liberty.

4. We've seen that there are those in the world who would destroy prosperity of others in pursuit of personal power. We need enough security to protect prosperity achieved from whomsoever would destroy it. That involves not only home defense but protection of the market environment and individual liberties necessary for widespread prosperity.

The free-market environemt is a precious resource that should be (and largely is) available for all individuals and nations to use. It is the infrastructure that can ultimately lead to a world where every individual has the opportunity to achieve their full potential.

What's so difficult about that, Robert?

rshow55 - 08:28pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#40 of 47) Delete Message

The N. Koreans are in a mess, every which way, and the per capita GNP of N. Korea is something less than a tenth of that of the South. They are vulnerable to interdiction -- they are vulnerable in all sorts of ways - - and they can be defeated or put into situations where they do not threaten us - - if we take our time, and work sensibly.

Ideally, looking for ways that we can explain to others, and that make the lives of N. Koreans better.

If the N. Koreans were anywhere close to nuclear tipped missiles that could reach the US I'd advocate interdiction , which we could make work -- rather than BMD systems that can't do the job.

manjumicha2001 - 08:29pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#41 of 47)

I think NK does have both capabilities (missiles and countermeasures) but also realize that the possession of such capability does not bring much benefits to them unless US is willing to "dance" to somehow mutually agreeable "tunes." That is why I think they needed those series of public advertisements (open air nuclear trigger test, open air P processing plant, constructing & testing open air launch facility (a hut, really), and 1998 solid fuel three-stage firework) to bring US to the negotiating I stretching things here??

manjumicha2001 - 08:31pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#42 of 47)

Ok, interdiction?

How would that work? I am really curious since even William Perry (whom I respect more than P.W or otehr Bush friends) couldn't really offer that option....

rshow55 - 08:32pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#43 of 47) Delete Message

Glad you're back, gisterme -- posted my last without seeing your gisterme 3/1/02 8:26pm

I'm a long way from being a pacifist - but forces have to work -- and stability is an issue.

rshow55 - 08:37pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#44 of 47) Delete Message

manjumicha2001 3/1/02 8:31pm you got Perry references that I can see?

I can work without them, but they'd be appreciated.

rshow55 - 08:45pm Mar 1, 2002 EST (#45 of 47) Delete Message

manjumicha2001 3/1/02 8:22pm

I think I made it clear that I do agree with your presupposition that NMD program is not technically feasible.

Not entirely clear - - and does gisterme agree with that?

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