Stubborn Things: A Decade of Facts About Ballistic Missile Defense   [open pdf - 2MB]

While National Missile Defense (NMD) stirs emotions today, the decisions of policy makers must be based upon the facts rather than on "our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions...." This report then traces with facts the path from comity between the US and Russia under the Bush administration to distrust between the two countries that developed during the Clinton administration. This report notes several trends, among them the Clinton administration's denial of the emerging ballistic missile threat and reluctance to come to terms with a changed environment; its chronic under-funding of ballistic missile defense programs, beginning with sharp reductions early in its first term, and exacerbated by additional cuts in the Democrat controlled Congress; its emphasis on arms control over military capability; and its opposition to the missile defense initiatives of the post-1994 Republican Congress. The failure of the Clinton administration to consider seriously any technologies for NMD other than those most superficially compatible with the ABM Treaty is also documented. The result is a proposed ground-based missile defense that is the nearest-term answer to the emerging ICBM threat.

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