FEASIBILITY: ONCE A THIN SYSTEM IS DEPLOYED IT WILL INEVITABLY BECOME A THICK SYSTEM
DEPLOYMENT OF A THIN NATIONAL MISSILE DEFENSE SYSTEM WILL QUICKLY LEAD TO DEPLOYMENT OF A THICK NATIONAL MISSILE DEFENSE SYSTEM
KOSTA TSIPIS former director of the Program in Science and Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The New York Times March 24, 1999, SECTION: Section A; Page 26; HEADLINE: Anti-Missile System: Same Old Bad Idea // lnu-acs
The Congressional proposal to build a "thin" anti-ballistic missile system -- one that could shield against about half a dozen long-range nuclear ballistic missiles originating in developing countries -- is shortsighted (Week in Review, March 21).
Aside from the fact that we do not know how to construct such a defense, nothing will prevent Iran, India, China or any future holder of nuclear ballistic missiles from producing enough of them to overwhelm a "thin" anti-ballistic missile defense system.
The United States would then be obliged to deploy a "thick" system -- a shield that would protect us from a major nuclear attack of 10 to 100 missiles -- which would violate the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Defense Treaty with Russia. Violation of this treaty might impel Russia to increase its arsenal of intercontinental ballistic missiles, thereby renewing the nuclear arms race that Presidents Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George Bush managed to tamp down.
AMERICAN PEOPLE WILL DEMAND THAT A THIN NATIONAL MISSILE DEFENSE SYSTEM BE MADE THICK
Bart Baron The Detroit News April 14, 1999 Pg. A14 HEADLINE: U.S. needs anti-ballistic missile defense // lnu-acs
President Bill Clinton has proposed spending $ 10.5 billion on a limited shield. This is far too little and, hopefully, not too late. Let's put the "Star Wars" project on the front burner. Let's put a few more 747s with lasers in the sky to shoot down incoming warheads rather than just using questionable anti-ballistic missile technology. It's fine to propose a limited shield, but the American people deserve better from our leaders. How can we pursue life, liberty and happiness if the proverbial sword of Damocles held by some rogue state is dangling above our heads?
THIN SYSTEM WILL GO THICK INEXORABLY
Peter Maass; The New York Times September 26, 1999, Section 6; Page 58; HEADLINE: Get Ready, Here Comes the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle // ln-10/99-acs
In a 1996 report, the Congressional Budget Office said the "thin" defense offered by N.M.D. may need to be thickened in the years ahead as rogue nations expand and enhance their arsenals. An effective defense against the ballistic threats of tomorrow would require space-based interceptors and space-based lasers, the budget office reported, because precious minutes are wasted by ground-based weapons that must be boosted into space after a hostile missile is already on its way to America. According to the report, the cost of building such an enhanced system could "greatly exceed $60 billion by 2010."
THIN SYSTEM WILL INEVITABLY GO THICK
Financial Times (London) December 20, 1999, SECTION: LEADER; Pg. 18 HEADLINE: LEADER: Slippery slope to Star Wars //acs-ln-12-22-99
One option would be to accept the modest US missile defence system the Clinton administration says it has in mind. But would it stop there? Today's Republicans and maybe tomorrow's Democrats want an NMD system that would evolve into a full 'Star Wars' shield against all threats. NMD is likely to be a slippery slope. The one sure guard against slipping is therefore to stay off the slope.
ONCE ESTABLISHED, A THIN MISSILE DEFENSE SYSTEM WILL BECOME THICK
Financial Times (London), October 29, 1999, SECTION: COMMENT & ANALYSIS; Pg. 19, HEADLINE: Licence for a unilateral America: Washington is deluding itself if it thinks a new anti-missile defence system will enhance its national security // ln-acs-11-11-99
As to the scale of the project, there is hardly a soul in Washington who demurs from the idea that, once established, the shield would be progressively widened and hardened - first against China's missiles and eventually to offer some measure of protection against Russia.