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 [F] New York Times on the Web Forums  / Science  /

    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?

Read Debates, a new Web-only feature culled from Readers' Opinions, published every Thursday.

Earliest Messages Previous Messages Recent Messages Outline (5467 previous messages)

manjumicha - 01:42am Nov 5, 2002 EST (# 5468 of 5478)

The United States tested its first H-bomb in 1952, seven years after its first A-bomb. China, France, Great Britain and the Soviet Union have tested H-bombs much sooner after testing their first A-bomb. India has tested a booster bomb - a precursor of H-bombs. Israel most likely has H-bombs. Any nation that can made booster bombs can make H-bombs as well. North Korea's 31.5 kg of plutonium, assuming that is all North Korea has to work with, would mean at least 30 H-bombs. If this is true, one can no longer pooh pooh North Korea's 1-2 'primitive' nukes. North Korea's 30 or so H-bombs can do serious damage to Japan and the United States.

Kang Sang Wuk told Kelly, Bush's special envoy to Pyongyang, that North Korea has not only 'nuclear programs' but also, more "powerful' weapons. Other North Korean spokesmen have in the past alluded to waging thermo-nuclear war with the United States using nuclear-tipped ICBMs. Is it possible that they are not bluffing?

manjumicha - 01:54am Nov 5, 2002 EST (# 5469 of 5478)

So fellows

Hope you guys were able bear with me on the long article posted... I for one do not believe NK is bluffing on this one. Though eccentric and dictatorial regime it certainly is on many matters, they have been rather consistent in their assessment re: US nuclear doctrine. I think they are well aware that they better be able to back up their words with deeds on this type of stuff in the age of Bush doctrine that we live in.....

So my humble suggestion to you, Robert, is that maybe what we need more of now is good old fashioned "real politik" and damm good one at that rather than appeals to humanistic and historically sensitive cumbaya mumbojumbo other words, just for this one, give me the real Kissinger not wannabes such rummy and chenny or starry eyed liberals.

rshow55 - 07:58am Nov 5, 2002 EST (# 5470 of 5478) Delete Message
Can we do a better job of finding truth? YES. Click "rshow55" for some things Lchic and I have done and worked for on this thread.

I think you need both the most competent military and "realpolitical" approach possible AND enough discourse that possibilities of comfortable resolution are at least discussable.

The N. Koreans are no more crazy than MAD - mutual assured destruction - - and I think there's some comfort to be taken in knowing that deterrance often has worked in the past. There's a nice image associated with

. What, Me Worry About Insults? By THOMAS VINCIGUERRA

-- and as any fool can plainly see, Alfred E. Neumann is scared out of his wits - but trying to put a brave face on it.

We might consider the same stance - at least a little.

I've assumed that the NKs had the H bomb - because the damn things are so easy to build - the NK's can't run a decent economy - or even feed their people - but they aren't totally screwed up - - they ought to know enough to build H-Bombs.

I think Rummy and Co might be militarily more effective if they considered some stuff on this board - I'm not a prude about killing people. I'm thinking about reposting some of it - if I think it is stabilizing to do so, on the assumption that both the North Koreans and some halfway reasonable Americans may be reading it. Haven't decided yet, but expect to soon.

Military functions can be absolutely essential, for reasons that are never going to change - so long as man remains man.

But sometimes, talking is necessary too , if there is to be any possibility of a good outcome.

This time, for all the risks - a lot of the situation looks hopeful to me.

And I don't have to like or trust the NKs to think so.

manjumicha - 09:45am Nov 5, 2002 EST (# 5471 of 5478)

I fact I would argue that Clinton plan (which was in fact a recommendation by William Perry, probably a true heir to Kissingerian fame if any) was probably the only course available then and available now...which Bush will eventually take as well in his second term (like Clinton did after exhausting all the options). Another little prediction of mine which I am sure Mazzas of this world will quickly forget true to their form.

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