Dear Members and Friends,
We give due recognition to one of America’s true Statesmen, the Chairman of the United States Senate Armed Services Committee, Senator Carl Levin, who is retiring, serving in the Senate since 1979 and has been at the forefront of missile defense for our nation, our allies, Israel and the debate on Strategic Missile Defense. The Democrat from the State of Michigan, opposed President Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative and debated against the deployment of our nation’s ground based interceptors and over all system in order to ensure its reliability, testing validation and confidence before and after the deployment of our nation’s missile defense system. Though he has not been a supporter of expanding the ground based missile defense system in Poland or here in the United States, Senator Levin’s criticism, leadership and sometimes partisan debate on Missile Defense has in the end lead to a more reliable system and has authorized appropriate fixes within the system to ensure better protection for our nation.
Senator Levin is recognized for his leadership of Congressional support of Israel’s development of missile defense from the beginning to the deployment of their systems from Arrow to Iron Dome in Israel’s continual growth of having a independent homeland defense capability. Senator Levin is also recognized for his authorization and support of our regional missile defense systems from Patriot, THAAD, Aegis BMD and Aegis Ashore and with our nation’s deployments of those systems from the European Phased Adaptive Approach, to the GCC, Japan and Korea.
Senator Levin is a patriot, a civil rights leader, a job creator, an intellect and a true statesman in his stewardship of the United States Senate Armed Service Committee during his three tenures. His perspectives will be missed and we thank him for his honorable service to our nation and our people.
“Scientifically and strategically, missile defense is a complex endeavor, as all of you know. But it has powerful potential to protect our security and the world¹s security. Already, today, deployed missile defense systems are protecting us, our troops and our allies. It can defend our homeland and the homelands of other nations from attack, particularly by rogue or fanatic regimes. It can help deter countries such as Iran from pursuing dangerous and destabilizing policies. These capabilities, and more, give missile defense a place of growing importance to our national security. We are grateful to you for your contributions to this vital cause of helping to keep America secure in an insecure world.” — Senator Carl Levin, March 26, 2012