Dear Members and Friends,
President Barack Obama released the Federal Budget for 2010 yesterday here in Washington D.C., his first major budget release of his Administration setting the precedent for his presidency. Inside of his 3.4 trillion dollar budget was the Department of Defense’s Budget request of 534 billion and the Missile Defense Budget request for 7.8 billion dollars. The Department of Defense budget was increased by 21 billion dollars, a 4% increase from last year while funding going to Missile Defense Agency budget was decreased by 1.2 billion, a 13% decrease.
This administration has reshaped, restructured and redirected missile defense as they make it their own and take full ownership from the former President George W Bush and the four previous Presidents that have contributed Department of Defense dollars towards missile defense. With an overall 8.2 Billion dollars spent on Missile Defense including Army Patriot Missile Defense systems at a 400 million for 2010 still remains a core mission of the Department of Defense and President Barack Obama’s administration.
The Obama administration’s direction for missile defense focuses on:
– Increasing capability against short and medium range ballistic missiles in regions against rogue nations to protect our forward based armed forces and allies through deploying more THAAD, SM3 missiles and AEGIS BMD Ships as well as developing land based SM3 missile defense systems.
– Developing assent and upper boost phase missile defense capabilities through SM3/ AEGIS development, enhanced THAAD capability, and deploying a Space Tracking and Surveillance System (STSS) constellation.
– Revamping the testing program with an aggressive amount of significant intercept tests, an estimated 37 or so by 2015.
– Holding in place the development of the European Midcourse Radar in the Czech Republic and the 10 Ground based missiles in Poland until 2011 and ratification comes forward by the Czech Republic and Poland on the agreements with the United States.
– Reducing and enhancing the long range ballistic missile protection of the United States homeland to 30 Ground Based Interceptors in Alaska and California from a projected 50 (40 in US and 10 in Poland).
“President Barack Obama and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates have made a strategic decision to support and field a missile defense capability. This administration has acknowledged the threat of ballistic missiles from Iran and North Korea in the near-term, and have defied the critics of missile defense by deploying what we have now and the fundamental policy question of whether we should do missile defense or not do missile defense has been answered…missile defense looks to be an embedded core element of the defense of the United States, and will be part of the underlying fabric of American defense capabilities. This administration has clearly ratified the idea that ballistic missiles are a real threat to the United States, its allies and the armed forces.” April 9th, 2009
After review of the statements made and examination of the budget, there are two questions regarding this new administration’s direction and pragmatic approach for the protection of the American people from ballistic missiles
1. With the increase of ballistic missile and nuclear proliferation from rogue nations since the beginning of this year, highlighted by Iran’s satellite launch on February 3, Failure of Diplomacy and international sanctions including UN security resolutions to prevent North Korea from launching a long range missile or space vehicle, North Korea’s successful 3 staging of a long range missile on April 5, North Korea’s opening up of their nuclear program and Iran’s continual uranium enrichment programs, why is the United States not increasing its missile defense resources?
2. As of less than 6 months ago, the United States Department of Defense through the Missile Defense Agency and the Strategic Combat Command had determined that 50 ground based interceptors were required to defend the territory and the homeland of the United States of America from a simultaneous attack of around two dozen or so projected long range ballistic missiles from North Korea and Iran, what has changed in the threat development and proliferation of ballistic missile capability of either North Korea and Iran in the last 6 months to warrant a 40% decrease to 30 ground based interceptors to protect the American Public and their nation?
Missile defense is about our nation and the fundamental core protecting our homeland from current and future threats and should always be a high priority, to sacrifice or reduce the long range missile protection of our nation for short and medium range missile defense capabilities should not be the choice, all should be supported.
It is of strong merit that international leadership for missile defense is and continues to be led by our nation. The threat continues to grow and we cannot afford to be the only country with capabilities to ensure protection, deterrence and dissuasion against rogue nations. The United States is working with 17 nations in the international community and NATO on missile defense as well as developing missile defense systems with more than 6 countries, thus missile defense resources must be able to continue to support these efforts for global protection. A global problem requires a global solution.
President Barack Obama and his administration need to have other options than the United Nations, diplomacy, and use of military force for if not he will face a world of new nuclear powers that will be driven by lack of missile defense and U.S. deterrence to become nuclear. This is too important for our nation and our world.