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President of the United States Joseph Biden arrives at Yokota Air Base, Japan, May 22, 2022. (Photo Credits: DVIDS - U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Juan Torres)

“Are you willing to get involved militarily to defend Taiwan if it comes to that?” 

–      Reporter asking President Joe Biden, Monday, May 23, 2022 

“Yes, that’s the commitment we made.” 

“We agree with the One China policy. We signed on to it, and all the attendant agreements made from there, but the idea that it can be taken by force, just taken by force, is just not appropriate,”

–      President Joe Biden, Monday, May 23, 2022 

With this clear public commitment from the 46th United States President to China, the United States must strengthen its posture in the Indo Pacific region in order to ensure it is well positioned to support Taiwan in the event of Chinese Communist Party aggression. Guam would be the foremost critical asset to be defended to project U.S. deterrent power, followed by Alaska, and America’s allies who reside in the first and second island chains. 

“It is easy to see why Guam is an appealing target to China. The island hosts the U.S. Navy’s only submarine base in the western Pacific, one of the few facilities where submarines can reload weapons in theater. Guam is home to an enormous air base that hosted bombers, fighters, and support aircraft in World War II and the Vietnam War and would likely play a similar role in any contingency with China, including in a conflict in the Taiwan Strait. Guam is also home to 170,000 U.S. citizens who expect to be defended in a conflict.”

“Guam Needs Better Missile Defense – Urgently” by MDAA Chairman and Founder Riki Ellison, MDAA board member Mark Montgomery, and Bradley Bowman – May 23, 2022. Published in Defense One

This article argues for an initial operation capability by 2024 for the Defense of Guam and full capability by 2027, outlining the four essential elements of effective missile defense for Guam. They include: 

(1) radar that can spot any missile coming from any direction 

(2) a weapons-control system that links the various radars and weapons on the island, at sea, and in the air or space; 

(3) enough launchers to intercept everything from ballistic missiles arriving from outer space to sea-skimming cruise missiles; and 

(4) a command-and-control system that enables the safe and effective integration of fires and deconfliction of airspace.  

Alaska represents another strategic position for US force projection in the Pacific as it houses scores of F-22s and F-35s. 

“I have significant concerns about my ability to defend those assets. Not only F-22s, Senator, you have significant portions of our ballistic missile and our threat warning capabilities in Alaska. Cobra Dane is out there at Clear Station. We have the radar and we’re building our long-range discriminating radar, as well. I was just there by the way. Very, very impressive.” 

–      General Glen VanHerck during the SASC Strategic Forces Subcommittee hearing on Missile Defense on May 18, 2022

The defense of those assets in Alaska will significantly determine how effective the US can be in deterring China and Russia threat to the homeland.

China has watched Russia, a world nuclear power lose “face” with the international community as a result of its inability to fight and win a joint integrated air, land, space and sea battle against a much less capable neighbor, Ukraine, that was once a part of the Soviet Union. It cannot be lost upon the CCP leadership that the challenge in Taiwan is similar to Ukraine in many aspects. China has not seen major combined arms combat since the Korean War, nor has it employed joint forces in an amphibious invasion in its modern military history. China would be stepping into an unknown battlefield and risk similar humiliation on the global stage. Balancing this is a positive lesson China is observing and learning from the Russian operation against Ukraine, and that is the value of ballistic, cruise and hyper glide missile strikes.  

Posturing to defend Guam with missile defense capabilities as we are observing DoD plan to do today, and then equipping Alaska, our first and second island chain allies, and Taiwan with similar missile defense capabilities, and bringing in a mix with of offensive power projection capabilities, will collectively serve as a tremendous deterrent to China, resulting in a safer Indo-Pacific than exists today.

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.