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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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(868 previous messages)
- 10:23am Mar 27, 2002 EST (#869
3/1/02 5:55pm ... MD14 rshow55
3/1/02 6:10pm ...
3/1/02 6:07pm reads as follows:
This summarizes a great deal of discourse on the MD thread -- was
set out at MD11896 -- and hasn't been contested. It was also posted
.. Psychwar, Casablanca, and Terror as follows:
The NYT Missile Defense thread, which now fills 30 1 1/2'
notebooks of text, is being rebooted - continued, but without
holding previous text on the database. The last ten days have been
especially active, with our "Putin stand in, almarst " , and
the "Bush administration stand-ins" quite active. I posted the
following summary of the thread to date. . . .
"This thread has made some progress. The "missile defense"
programs are technically much less tenable than they used to be. I
think the discourse on this thread has been part of that. Very
serious efforts to defend BMD have been made here - and they have
taken up much space, and involved many evasions. But they have made
no specific and detailed technical points that have been able to
stand about technical feasibility.
"The "lasar weapon" programs have been significantly
discredited -- because countermeasures are easy, because adaptive
optics is not easy, and because a fundamental
misunderstanding about the "perfect coherence" of lasers has been
" Alignment good enough for lasing" has been
confused with the far more difficult alignment needed for
laser beam coherence for destroying targets over long distances.
"This has probably undermined every single BMD laser program
in existence. (To be good enough for lasing, one needs alighnments
so that the cosine of alignment angle is almost exactly 1 -- which
is fairly easy -- to be good enough for aiming, alignment, already
difficult for lasing - has to be thousands of times better --
probably impossible, even for a lab curiosity - certainly impossible
for a high powered, tactical laser subject to system vibration.)
"There are other key errors in the laser systems, too --
including a "feedback loop" in the ABL system without enough signal
to function at all.
"Whether these oversights have anything to do with a hostile
takeover effort of TRW Corportion, I can only speculate -- but
hostile takeovers of major US. military contractors are generally
consistent with DOD policy.
"The midcourse interception program that has taken up so much
diplomatic space has always been vulnerable to extraordinarily easy
countermeasures. This thread has reinforced points that should
already have been clear. Points much of the technical community has
long insisted on. It costs perhaps a ten thousandth as much to
defeat the system as it costs to build it. Perhaps much less. Some
facts are based on physics of the sending, reflection, and recieving
of electromagnetic radiation (light, radio waves, or any other) are
now well known, and inescapable.
"Arguments on this thread recently have favored BMD as
psychological warfare -- as bluff. In my view, the bluff is
grotesquely more expensive than can be justified -- and fools almost
no one, any more, but the American public."
I feel that the technical credibility of ballistic missile
defense ought to be questioned, in detail, and to closure -- because
so much diplomacy, and so much of the current rationale for Bush
administration policy, hinges on it.
We need some islands of technical fact to be determined, beyond
reasonable doubt, in a clear context. It is possible to do that now.
- 12:28pm Mar 27, 2002 EST (#870
3/26/02 11:42pm bears rereading, and some thought, in the
context of this thread -- where ABL http://airbornelaser.com/special/abl/
was held up as a triumph, and something that would be ready, not for
testing, but for deployment, soon.
In a world where 600,000 babies a year are infected with AIDS
because we haven't spent a billion dollars, and where 6,000 children
a day die of water borne diseases -- and in a world where
there are MANY other worthwhile things to do, isn't it murderous, as
well as fraudulent, to continue to pour money into a program that is
dissipating many billions of dollars as nothing but a "make work"
program for some contractors?
- 02:43pm Mar 27, 2002 EST (#871
Russia planing to counter US missile shield: defence minister
Russia is preparing "technical and scientific" measures to
counter a planned US missile defence shield, Russian Defence
Minister Sergei Ivanov said.
"I want to underline that the US shield does not yet exist,
and so it is difficult to speak of retaliatory measures," Ivanov was
quoted as saying by ITAR-TASS during a visit to a military base.
"But this is not to say that we are not thinking about or
taking technical and scientific measures," he added.
"We are going to do everything to counter these threats when
they take shape, if they ever take shape, which is to say not before
2015-2020," Ivanov said.
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