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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?
Read Debates, a
new Web-only feature culled from Readers' Opinions, published every
(1885 previous messages)
- 04:48pm Apr 29, 2002 EST (#1886
rshowalt - 03:32pm Oct 5, 2000 EDT (#379 of 396)
First, look at what is there, ready to go off, on each side, to
blow up the world. Here's a television treatment of the case, that
assumes much MORE stabilty than I believe is really justified.
The following is a transcript of a CBS 60 Minutes II segment
entitled " The Missiliers. " Produced by George Crile, it
contains an extensive interview between Dan Rather and General
Eugene Habiger (Ret.) , former Commander-in-chief of all U.S.
nuclear forces. http://www.gsinstitute.org/projects/missiliers.html
Toward the end of the 2nd show in this series, there's this.
Habiger: ... "We have reached the point where
the senior military generals responsible for nuclear forces are
advocating, more vocally, more vehemently, than our politicians,
to get down to lower and lower weapons. Think about that."
Dan Rather . . . " I have thought about that.
And the irony is extreme."
Habiger: "Itís a dilemma. I know of no other
situation in the history of our country where we face this kind of
Studio Out: That dilemma may well get worse. At a time when
trust has disappeared, the missiles on both sides continue to
operate on full combat alert.
We need to take down our nuclear weapons (NOT our conventional
weapons) based on the rational distrust and fear both the U.S. and
Russia have. The mechanics are not difficult - this tread,
#266-269 . rshowalt 9/25/00 7:32am
We should work with rational fear and distrust, which we have
in abundance, and not ask for love and trust between America and
Russia, which we can never expect.
- 04:49pm Apr 29, 2002 EST (#1887
rshowalt - 05:54pm Oct 5, 2000 EDT (#380 of 396)
There was an interesting detail in this 60 minutes 2 show. The
implication was clear that the people in charge of firing the
missiles, on both sides, expected them to be taken down. But the
order to do so never came through.
The political and negotiating authorities of the two sides, in
interaction, weren't able to do what almost everybody involved
wanted to do.
They were hoping for a new dawn of trust. Trust didn't come.
Why not take advantage of the the distrust we have?
Since the fall of the Soviet Union, almost all the assumptions
about controls, and invulnerability of those controls, have been
shown false by internet experience.
Does anybody LIKE these weapons? Why not take them down? People
who know the situation use the word "hair trigger" to describe
current deployment, and with classification rules in place, it isn't
possible nor is it desirable to add too much detail to this.
My own view is that there's about a 10%-30% chance of the world
ending, per year, from now on, until these weapons are taken down,
or the world ends. ( Note - I think the risks are now less, after
9/11 especially ). I'd be grateful for a chance to describe, to
authorities, with some trusted journalists watching, why I think so.
(Others are not a lot more optimistic than I am - General Horner,
for instance, thinks odds are good that an American city will blow
up this decade. I agree with that, but am more concerned, because I
think our missiles would be likely to fire, and destroy the world,
if that happened.) A problem is, who can check, with
classification rules as they are? Those rules are set up so that
nothing that actually matters can be checked with decent
Just a note: The intelligence agencies are in the deception
business, and they busily decieve each other, at all sorts of
levels. Their bookeeping is terrible, and they tell each other so
many things that aren't so that they are singularly ill qualified to
check anything at all. These guys are sloppy.
Challenge: Can anyone in the government prove, by the ordinary
usages, that I've ever had any access to classified information, of
any kind, ever? Any at all? That ought to be easy to do. I
bet they can't do it.
Now, these are the guys we are trusting to check our control
systems, and negotiating stances, for reliability.
We're betting our lives on their reliability. And these folks are
unbelievably sloppy, and have been telling so many lies, for so
long, that they barely know whether they are coming or going. The
only know that, no matter what, the rule is "hide it."
I believe that, our missile deployments are terribly dangerous,
and we should take them down. On the basis of distrust and mutual
fear we can do it, and do it soon. All we need, and this is
especially on the American side, is a change of heart.
End of repost from Oct 5, 2000
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