Dear Members and Friends,
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, under the direction of President Obama, put forward the most positive statement of support for Missile Defense by a Democratic President since President Lyndon Johnson, as the Ballistic Missile Defense Review Report was announced and released last month. Click here for the BMDR
“The protection of the United States from the threat of ballistic missile attack is a critical national security priority. The threat to our deployed military forces and to our allies and partners is growing rapidly. This threat has significant implications for our ability to project power abroad, to prevent and deter future conflicts, and to prevail should deterrence fail.”
– Robert Gates, February 1, 2010
Under guidance from the President of the United States and by the direction of Congress the report laid out, in order of priority, the following policy positions:
1. The United States will continue to defend the homeland against the threat of limited ballistic missile attack.
2. The United States will defend against regional missile threats to U.S. forces, while protecting allies and partners and enabling them to defend themselves.
3. Before new capabilities are deployed, they must undergo testing that enables assessment under realistic operational conditions.
4. The commitment to new capabilities must be fiscally sustainable over the long term.
5. U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense capabilities must be flexible enough to adapt as threats change.
6. The United States will seek to lead expanded international efforts for missile defense.
These policy directives on missile defense by the President and the Secretary of Defense should be fully endorsed and supported. They are the right objectives at the right time for our nation and the world in response to the ballistic missile threats we face today and in the future.
As the leading democracy of the world, it is the responsibility and duty of the U.S. Congress to enforce and hold accountable the President and the Secretary of Defense to their declared policy positions on this unequivocally stated “critical national security priority.”
As talks between Russia and the United States for the successor to the START treaty to reduce strategic forces near closure, any stated or implied reference or linkage to Missile Defense, bi-lateral or unilateral, is unacceptable, as this would be directly contrary to President Obama and Secretary Gates stated policy positions on Missile Defense.
We stand vigilant in making our world a safer place through Missile Defense.