The bold new direction for missile defense is worthy of support

May 13, 2021


It is a relative rarity in these times for public discourse to center on how and when our government has accomplished something really worthwhile and substantial. But Congress, the Department of Defense (DOD), and the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) recently collaborated to do just that. Together, they achieved a real success story with the decision to fund two defense industry teams to compete for MDA’s sole remaining missile defense upgrade program, the Next Generation Interceptor (NGI).

The decision to fund the two competitors through the Technical Maturation and Risk Reduction Phase of the acquisition process is a positive step for the nation’s missile defense and promises to finally deliver a real capability to defeat the threat posed by North Korea’s and Iran’s nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM). However, the challenge that Washington faces in the relative short term is to actually see the plan through to fruition.

The threat that North Korean nuclear ICBMs pose to the homeland is well documented and understood within DOD. Approximately 30 to 40 nuclear warheads, and the ICBMs capable of ranging most if not all of the United States to carry them, in the hands of a despotic and often erratic leadership represents a threat to the American people that no administration can ignore…

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