The Debate Over Missile Defensein Europe Robert G. Bell SAIC Georgia Tech The Sam Nunn School of International Affairs October 12, 2009
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates “I have found since taking this post that when it comes to missile defense, some hold a view bordering on theology that regards any change of plans or any cancellation of a program as abandonment or even breaking faith.” New York Times Op-Ed September 20, 2009
Will It Work? No/Not proven Does/Confident it will Is There A Threat? No/Can Wait to see Yes/Can’t wait (strategic surprise) BUT… Costs Too Much BUT… We have other priorities BUT Can rely on Nuclear deterrence BUT Not worth Angering Russia Should be pursued these concerns notwithstanding Missile Defense Decision Pathway
President Obama in Prague, April 5th “Let me be clear: Iran’s nuclear and ballistic missile activity poses a real threat, not just to the United States but to Iran’s neighbors and our allies. The Czech Republic and Poland have been courageous in agreeing to host a defense against these missiles. As long as the threat from Iran persists, we will go forward with a missile defense system that is cost-effective and proven.”
President Obama’s September 17th Announcement “As I said during the campaign, President Bush was right that Iran’s ballistic missile program poses a significant threat. And that is why I am committed to deploying strong missile defense systems that are adaptable to the threats of the 21st century. … This new approach will provide capabilities sooner, build on proven systems, and offer greater defenses against the threat of missile attack than the 2007 European missile defense program.”
Bush v. Obama Plans • “Brand X” • “stronger, smarter and swifter defenses”
“Phased, adaptive” approach Defend Europe first, US later Sea-based SM-3 in 2011 Progressively upgraded land-based SM-3s in 2015, 2018, 2020 New sensors Forward based radar in Turkey NATO invited to be full partners from the start “3rd Site” Defend US and Europe from start 10 GBIs in Poland, midcourse fire control radar in Czech Rep. Forward based radar in Turkey NATO invited to “fill in gaps” Obama Plan v. Bush Plan
Obama 2009: TMD for defending forces ready now 2011: defense of SE Europe against short to medium-range Iranian missiles 2020: defense of all Europe and USA against long-range Iranian missiles Bush 2009: TMD for defending forces ready now 2015-17: defense of most of Europe and USA against Iranian medium and long-range missiles Which Provides Defense Sooner?
Obama 30 land-based SM-3 Block IA interceptors in Poland (US offer) “Scores” of SM-3 IAs offered for deployment elsewhere in Europe SM-3s and/or Command and control HQ in Czech Rep. (US offer) Bush 10 GBIs deployed in Poland (agreed by Polish Govt.) Midcourse fire control radar deployed in Czech Rep (agreed by Czech govt.) Which “Keeps Faith” Better with our Loyal Allies?
Obama “The cost of an SM-3 IB is about $10 million versus a GBI, which costs $70 million today, and against the the more advanced SM-3s, the cost estimate is $15 million per copy.” (LtGen O’Reilly, MDA Director) Bush Defending Europe using three Aegis ships equipped with SM-3 Block II interceptors would cost twice as much as the now abandoned approach, $18-22B v. $9-13B). (CBO Feb 2009 Report to Congress) Which Costs More?
Obama SM-3 Block IA already deployed SM-3 Block IB sensor under development SM-3 Block IIA and IIB are “paper systems” New sensors (inc. on UAVs) to be developed 2-stage GBI test in 2010 Bush European GBI a two stage variant of 3-stage GBI tested 8 times since 2001 (7 successful) 2-stage GBI test in 2010 Radar already deployed Which Builds on More Proven Technology?
Obama “The Russians don’t make determinations about what our defense posture is.” (Obama) Improved relationship with Russia “an ancilliary benefit..but it wasn’t the driver by far” (Jones) “Correct and brave decision” (Putin) “US could deploy missile shield in Arctic!” (Rogozin) “Statements…raise more questions than answers” (Lavrov) Bush CBM/transparency proposals rejected START extension held hostage Nuclear-armed cruise missiles to be moved to Kalingrad NATO-Russia TMD cooperation suspended Which Promotes Most Cooperation with Russia?
Russian Interceptors (12) Interceptor Site – Korolev
Russian Interceptors (16) Interceptor Site – Lytkarino
Russian Interceptors (16) Interceptor Site– Skhodnya
Russian Interceptors (12) Interceptor Site – Sofrino
Russian Interceptors (12) Interceptor Site – Vnukovo
Russian ABM Battle Management Center Radar Site – PILLBOX
Russian MD Radar Radar Site – Gabala, Azerbaijan
Russian MD Radar Radar Site – Lekhtusi (12/2006)* *Another Voronezh DM of this type was constructed in Armavir in 2007
Obama Alaska/California GBIs remain on alert 92% probability of stopping Iranian attack (Cartright) GBI deployments capped at current levels No additional homeland defense capability until 2020 ( via SM-3 IIB). Bush Alaska/California GBIs remain on alert 96% probability of stopping Iranian attack once GBIs operational in Poland (Cartright) Additional GBIs to be deployed in Alaska Which Provides More Defense for America?
Obama v. Bush Plan Where do you come out?
Sam Nunn on Role of Missile Defense “I don’t view ballistic missile defense as simply a tactical matter to extract cooperation from Russia on Iran. I don’t disagree that kind of cooperation is needed. But there’s a much bigger picture here, which is that we are going to need some type of missile defense systems in the future, and having Russia as part of that effort is enormously important. We can’t wish away this whole set of dangers that relate to the delivery of a nuclear weapon, either against us or our allies.” - Interview, April 6, 2009