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The homeland defense of U.S. territory and states is the number one objective of our national security, without it there is no global leadership for a prosperous and safe world. The United States global influence depends on its economic power backed up by its military’s global credibility. To forward operate in global market regions to protect economic thoroughfares and allies, the United States has to be able to defend its forward deployed forces and capabilities as its second national security objective.

There is great urgency to ensure the current 44 Ground-Based Interceptors (GBIs) are the best that they can be, increase the capacity, and deploy a multi-tiered underlayer of sea- and land-based systems as soon as 2024 to mitigate the risk of limited GBI capacity for the U.S. homeland until the deployment of the Next Generation Interceptor (NGI) and missile defenses against Hypersonic Glide Vehicles (HGVs) and hypersonic cruise missiles in 2028. Additionally, this urgency will drive on flexible first response options for joint offensive left-of-launch strike capabilities integrated with the missile defenses in an architecture that will leverage space, mobile and unmanned discrimination sensors with artificial intelligence in the future joint all-domain command and control (JADC2).

The security of the United States homeland and its territory from evolving missile threats around the world is being focused on with $20.3 billion this year and the United States Congress will now look to better ensure capacity and capability is being best addressed for the missile defense of its homeland. This critical and number one priority for our national security cannot wait for the conceptual silver bullets that may never happen or have to wait until a decade or so for risk adverse development, testing, and deployment of the recent past. Rapid development, rapid testing, rapid failure, and rapid deployment has to be done within the future years defense program (FYDP). The Department of Defense must program into the FYDP capabilities that exist today for fiscal year (FY) 2022, FY2023, FY2024, and FY2025 to enable the deployment of robust and layered missile defenses. Today there is little in FY2020 and FY2021 funding to mitigate risk to our homeland by deploying missile defense underlayers and improvements to the 44 GBIs before 2028.

Late last week – in addition to the $20.3 billion for missile defense and defeat in the FY2021 budget request submitted by the Administration – the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) put forward to the United States Congress $1.1 billion top unfunded requirements list of systems that were not included in the request.

– $231 million for ten additional Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IIA interceptors (Six SM-3 Block IIA interceptors were in the FY2021 request)

– $319 million for an eighth Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) battery

– $224 million to speed up development of a Regional Glide Phase Weapon System for hypersonic missile defense

These are existing systems and capacity increasers chosen – the SM-3 Block IIA is specifically for the deployment of the homeland defense underlayer and an additional THAAD battery provides more capacity to provide an underlayer for the U.S. homeland and territory as MDA develops the extended range of THAAD. Further in testimony yesterday, the NATO Supreme Allied Commander and U.S. European Command Commander, General Tod Wolters, emphasized the need of two additional Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) ships in Rota, Spain to best defend Europe and could be deployed with SM-3 Block IIA interceptors. What remains missing is land-based cruise missile defense capability to defend the U.S. homeland and forward deployed troops, as well as the Homeland Defense Radars (HDR) in the Pacific and Hawaii.

The nexus of underlayer missile defense for the U.S. homeland and territory, to best enhance military credibility for global influence, will be deployed in Guam, Hawaii, and Alaska. Rapidly developing and leveraging existing cross domain and cross joint service missile defense capabilities with space, land, sea, and unmanned discrimination sensors to the JADC2, and integrated with left-of-launch systems deployed within the FYDP is the great urgency we as a nation have to make happen.

Mission Statement

MDAA’s mission is to make the world safer by advocating for the development and deployment of missile defense systems to defend the United States, its armed forces and its allies against missile threats.

MDAA is the only organization in existence whose primary mission is to educate the American public about missile defense issues and to recruit, organize, and mobilize proponents to advocate for the critical need of missile defense. We are a non-partisan membership-based and membership-funded organization that does not advocate on behalf of any specific system, technology, architecture or entity.