ABSTRACT

Poor Man's Air Force: Implications of the Evolving Cruise Missile Threat   [open pdf - 1MB]

For several years, the United States has expended considerable resources on countering the theater ballistic missile threat. During this time, we have relatively ignored a growing land attack cruise missile threat. Land attack cruise missiles have the potential to be even more deadly than ballistic missiles, able to deliver similar payloads over similar distances with much greater accuracy. Advanced cruise missiles can penetrate existing air defenses, giving potential regional adversaries a significant ability to conduct strategic attack and interdiction against our military forces, a poor man's air force. Additionally, cruise missiles, synchronized with employment of ballistic missiles and manned aircraft, can have a synergistic effect. This paper examines implications of the growing threat by discussing the proliferation of cruise missiles, the features that make cruise missiles the growing weapon of choice in the Third World, Western defensive capabilities against the threat, and the effect that synchronized and synergistic use of cruise missiles can have on our air operations.

Author:
Publisher:
Date:
1997-04-07
Copyright:
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC): http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/
Format:
pdf
Media Type:
application/pdf
URL:
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