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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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rshow55 - 09:04am Mar 17, 2002 EST (#634 of 640) Delete Message

Here's a higher level, where questions that can be answered, and should be -- require us to be "special animals" ---


" How technically challenging are the missile defense programs that have been set out in public (laser and midcourse interception ) in terms of what is known, and what has been achieved, in the open engineering and scientific literature? Are the objectives for these specific kinds of systems compatible with the laws of physics? To work, these systems have to do specific things, and do these things together. Are the technical objectives these systems have to meet reasonable in terms of known laws of physics, and relevant experience in engineering?

" If function of these systems requires breakthroughs, compared to previous open literature theory or experience --- what are these breakthroughs? How do the results needed compare quantitatively to results that have been achieved in the open literature by engineers, applied physicists, or other people who measure carefully? If breakthroughs are required, how do they compare to test results that have been made available to date?

These missile defense programs need to be evaluated in a reasonable tactical context, subject to the countermeasures that can reasonably be expected and specified.

The safety of our "human teams" depends on right answers to questions like this - and to get them -- we have to be "special animals."

Memebers of different "teams" - looking at the same facts -- when they are clear -- usually draw the same conclusions. That makes civilization possible.

We've made some progress in that direction here already.

almarst-2001 - 10:11am Mar 17, 2002 EST (#635 of 640)

mazza - "The 1972 ABM Treaty was a treaty between the United States and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, {USSR}. I guess you haven't noticed but the USSR doesn't exist anymore."

This Treaty is just one among many other treaties signed over the years between US and USSR. Including Strategic Arms Reductions, Verifications, Nonproliferations, WMD Development and Testing etc.

After the dissolving the USSR, it was mutually understood to be in a common interest to stick to those Treaties as cornerstone of International Security Arrangements. The ABM Treaty has a legal exit mechanism after 6mo notification. No need to invent any other "legalities".

However, the ABM Treaty does not stand along and is part of the very carefully crafted package to provide International Stability Arrangements. By removing one of the pillars, there is a danger the whole structure will fall apart.

As result, the Russia may, and most likely will breach any of remaining Treaties to provide a credible deterrance - the only real goal all of those agreements.

What is important is not a peace of paper called treaty, but INTENTIONS, ACTIONS and CONSEQUENCES.

rshow55 - 10:52am Mar 17, 2002 EST (#636 of 640) Delete Message

almarst-2001 3/17/02 10:11am . . . Yes, and relatively few people, anywhere in the world, will blame Russia if she does so. -- Russia MUST maintain a credible deterrent - as part of a system of checks and balances with some flexibility - - in the world as it is.

It ought to be better, safer system than the one falling apart now.

A piece of paper is only important when it means what it purports to -- and exists in a context where promises in it can be trusted. You are right to say that

"What is important is not a peace of paper called treaty, but INTENTIONS , ACTIONS and CONSEQUENCES. "

INTENTIONS, ACTIONS and CONSEQUENCES exist in a detailed context (I don't find that comforting, necessarily, but it is true) and for a workable " package to provide International Stability Arrangements" things DO have to be very carefully crafted. With the whole world watching. In this circumstance, patterns of lies , deceptions , half truths , and muddles are dangerous and unstable.

The old system, which worked well in many ways, very poorly in others, is in disarray. An american administration is pulling it apart -- and gives as a reason for doing so a "missile defense" fiction that makes no sense at all -- something the administration itself must know.

A "web of facts" need to be substituted for a "web of lies."

Facts, established solidly enough, can be powerful. Enron was dominant - deferred to -- respected -- on the basis of a pattern of ornate but blatant deceptions. But the lies were unstable - - and once some key facts solidified - with clarity - and with many of the facts presented together in space and time, so people could see -- the fraud collapsed. An admirable collection of facts and circumstances, contributing to that instability is here:

Some key aspects of the US military-industrial-complex deserve analogous scrutiny. For it to happen, for it to be news, world leaders are going to have to ask for checking.

Technical issues about missile defense would be a good start, because they are so technically clear, and lend themselves to umpired discussion to closure. These issues also lend themselves to presentation at necessary levels: -- the "high academic and engineering level" - - the "level of special interest magazines, such as "Popular Mechanics" - - - and the level of general newspaper readers, including those who read tabloids. These presentations could all coexist, and be well done, on the internet - where the whole world could see them -- and national leaders and journalist would attend to them if national leaders actually asked for these issues to be clarified to closure.

MD84 rshow55 3/2/02 10:52am

MD14-15 rshow55 3/1/02 6:07pm

lchic - 12:11pm Mar 17, 2002 EST (#637 of 640)

    We are all animals (stated above)
Yet we are from the ONE and only one human race ... i'm for team spirit!

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