Saturday, September 02, 2006

Successful missile defense test just step one

We should all be very pleased and comforted that a recent test of our fledgling missile defense system was successful. An accurate missile defense system will protect us from enemies in a world where missiles and nukes are becoming more and more easily acquired. Having said that, though, I think we shouldn't get too comfortable as there is no defense that an enemy will not try to circumnavigate, and missile defense is no different.

As the United States has developed increasingly awesome technology, we have become a nation that no one really wants to have a conventional conflict with. Our capabilities are incredible. But one thing that we've seen happen is our enemies have gone to less sophisticated, unconventional threats in an effort to fight against us. I see that occurring again as we develop an anti-missile umbrella over North America and our allies. Our enemies will react to that by attempting to surreptitiously bring smaller, lower yield nukes into our cities where they can be detonated with no warning whatsoever.

So what does that mean? It means that our missile defense system is a necessary step one in the process of protecting this nation from the nuclear threats that we'll face in the coming years. If fate is smiling upon us at all, we'll have a little bit of time to deal with steps 2a and 2b, which is to tighten security and ratchet down access to ports and borders. The smaller nuclear technology needed for nukes that could be snuck into this country and secretly moved about the country is much more difficult (and expensive) to acquire than the standard nuclear technology used in warheads. The nuclear Pandora is out of its box, though, so we cannot approach the next step leisurely.

This does not in anyway mean that we would be less safe because of our missile defense system. We are safer, and anybody who says otherwise is ignorant. What the missile defense system will do is turn our enemies' attentions to our other weaknesses. That is why we need to address our borders and ports, and do so very quickly. We need to stay one step ahead of those who wish to kill Americans, and we will be negligent if we don't strengthen those two obvious weaknesses.

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