National Missile Defense System. . . . . Good or bad?

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by stevo, Jul 22, 2002.

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  1. CmdrMitthrawnuruodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2000
    star 6
    There will always be a way around it. The Defense system could never be perfect, it couldnt' prevent someone from walking into the middle of Manhattan with a homemade small nuke and setting it off. We'll never be totally safe.

    The MDS purpose is to knock out airborne projectiles. Not to keep nukes from being smuggled into the country.

    Thats where NEST comes in. They hunt down suitcase nukes, rogue nukes, stolen nukes, etc and disable them before they can be used.
  2. stevo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2001
    star 4

    All I'm saying is that we could spend billions on a NMD system, or cut down on nuclear arsenals with other countries and that provides a more sure way to protect us from nuclear war. Not to mention, its cheaper.
  3. Red-Seven Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 21, 1999
    star 5
    Stevo, we ARE trying to do the second option. Not everyone is cooperative...funnily enough, it's the people that aren't cooperative that we're most concerned about launching nukes! Would you imagine?
  4. JediSmuggler Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 5, 1999
    star 5
    stevo:

    I'm not concenred about countries that we negotiate arms-reduction treaties with, provided they comply.

    My concern is countries we cannot negotiate the treaties with, or when countries provide ballistic missile technology and the means to produce weapons of mass destruction to nations that are less than responsible in the world.

    It's called hedging the bets, and it's well worth the billions of dollars spent, IMHO.
  5. CmdrMitthrawnuruodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2000
    star 6
    All I'm saying is that we could spend billions on a NMD system, or cut down on nuclear arsenals with other countries and that provides a more sure way to protect us from nuclear war. Not to mention, its cheaper.

    You are also not seeing the bigger picture. Nuclear ICBMs aren't the only threat. What about Biological or Chemical ICBMs? Or just regular old rockets and missiles packed with high explosives?

    Someone with a Destroyer decides to accidently go off course in the Pacific or Atlantic Ocean and appear in American waters. They will be within range to bombard our coastal cities.

    Would the MDS react in time? By human reaction, no. By computer-montiored radar and automatic standby launch, maybe.

    And did you know we spend billions in cutting down our nuclear arsenal and providing aid and technology to help other countries cut down on theirs? Do you know where that nuclear waste goes? For all you know you could be living over an illegal nuclear waste dump.

    The government is going to spend alot of money in making your life more secure and safe so that you can have "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." If that means spending money in a defense weapons program that appears to be a total failure. So be it. Life is full of trial and errors. You don't get anywhere by doing something once and scrap it if it doesn't work.

    If we went by that attitude, alot of the things you have today such as planes, cars, bikes, tvs etc wouldn't exist.
  6. JediSmuggler Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 5, 1999
    star 5
    CmdrMitthrawnuruodo:

    Actually, if the destroyer kept coming close, we'd be shadowing it, and we'd be issuing a number of challenges before it got close. Probably surface vessels, but we'd use aircraft and subs, too.

    And if there was no response, we'd start shooting before it got close enough to shoot. One of the airborne laser planes could also be in position to hit anything they fire.
  7. bterrik Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 11, 2001
    star 4
    Ok, personally, I have to refute the "it might not work" argument or the "it won't work 100%" argument.

    Is that a reason to not do it? If we can only save 5 out of 10 targeted cities? Two out of 100? What if the two we were able to save were New York and Washington?

    What if one of them was the city in which you live? Then would you consider it worth it?

    How sucessful does it need to be before it should be implemented? If we are going to spend billions of dollars, how many lives do we need to save to make it worth it? 1,000? 1,000,000? 100,000,000? 10?

    In other words, how much is a life worth? That is a hard question, to say the least.

    To say that it only working 10 or even 2 % wouldn't be worth the money is to put a price on something I don't think can be valued.
  8. DarksiderGeorge Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2002
    star 2
    With all the hype about asteroids coming dangerously close to the Earth, I could see where people would begin to support a NMDS. I saw a program about "Earth Killer" asteroids, on the Discovery Channel. After watching it I felt that we DO need some defense against these threats too!!
  9. DilatedPeoples Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2002
    Will we really be invincible? No, but people here the word Defense and assume its good and perfect. It's a waste of money, and nothing more than a political device to gain votes and popularity. But then again, so is most of what politicians suggest
  10. Ramius Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 8, 2002
    star 3
    I wholeheartedly agree with bterrik's post. It's better to at least try to have some kind of defense against ballistic missiles, than not have one. It's better than saying, it won't work, or no one will ever fire one at us. You never know what could happen, and it's better to be prepared. And nothing ever works 100% of the time. In Desert Storm, 260 cruise missles were lauched, and about 240 hit their targets. Not a 100% success rate, but still, nothing will ever be that reliable to work ALL the time.

    It's a waste of money, and nothing more than a political device to gain votes and popularity.

    So would you rather not go to the trouble of seeing if it will work and just hope an ICBM isn't lauched against us? Personally, I would rather spend the money and try to make it work than take that chance. The Space Program started out as political, and it had dozens of failures, but they didn't give up, and they made manned space travel, even though expensive, a reality. I think people just need to have faith in new programs.

    All I'm saying is that we could spend billions on a NMD system, or cut down on nuclear arsenals with other countries and that provides a more sure way to protect us from nuclear war.

    While I think reducing arms is a good thing, it isn't an alternative to a NMD system. We can't even get weapons inspectors into Iraq, so how can we expect Saddam to comply with an arms reduction treaty?

    DarksiderGeorge, I don't think a NMD system is what we want against an asteroid, but I know what you mean. Some type of spacecraft going out to meet an oncoming asteroid with a nuclear warhead would be better, manned by a crew of the best oil drillers in the country :p
  11. stevo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2001
    star 4
    Not every system is perfect and in this case, one mistake could mean the lives of millions. I'm just saying there is probably a more efficent way to protect people all over the world than building a faulty NMDS. For starters, if diplomacy doesn't work, use nuclear warheads to shoot down ICBMs and other missiles, this assures that we do not have to directly hit that missile. Its just aiming too high to expect to hit one missile with another.

    The majority of experts on this matter agree that it is impossible to fit such complex circuitry into one missile without having it melt.
  12. Ramius Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 8, 2002
    star 3
    Okay, I see what you're saying stevo. I thought you were against any kind of protection. I read an article in this month's Aviation Week about Lasers and High Powered Microwaves, and how their development is coming along. In about 10 years at the latest, they will be practical weapons used on airplanes, vehicles, ships, and on spacecraft. One part of the article talks about interest in the military to arm naval ships with a self defense system that can "shoot down aircraft, large numbers of very-high-speed surface cruise missiles, and eventually, ballistic missiles."

    I think these energy weapons might have a much higher succes rate than missile to missile system.
  13. CmdrMitthrawnuruodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2000
    star 6
    Actually, if the destroyer kept coming close, we'd be shadowing it, and we'd be issuing a number of challenges before it got close. Probably surface vessels, but we'd use aircraft and subs, too.

    I was merely using it as an example. How about if I improve on it. A fleet of Destroyers reaches the American coast. Now there is a chance that Surface to Surface missiles could reach our cities while our forces fight the enemy force off.

    For starters, if diplomacy doesn't work, use nuclear warheads to shoot down ICBMs and other missiles, this assures that we do not have to directly hit that missile. Its just aiming too high to expect to hit one missile with another.

    Say hello to your Glow In the Dark grandchildren for me.

    Furthermore, do you even know the full capabilities of a nuke? Do you know what an airburst is and what it can do? Do you know what radiation is? Do you know what an EMP blast will do to the satillite network up that high or to a city below it? Do you know what a heat blast is? Do you know how many treaties we will be violating if we use nukes in our defense? Do you know how many environmentalists will be after the Military and Government for detonating nukes in our defense? Have you ever heard of the M.A.D. sceiniro[sp?]?
  14. DarksiderGeorge Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2002
    star 2
    DarksiderGeorge, I don't think a NMD system is what we want against an asteroid, but I know what you mean. Some type of spacecraft going out to meet an oncoming asteroid with a nuclear warhead would be better, manned by a crew of the best oil drillers in the country

    Only if the leader of the crew is named Bruce right?

    The NMDS might not be the best defense against a large asteroid, however it is imperative that humanity begins its work on a viable defense against a catastrophic impact. Perhaps the Bush admin. is just using a nuclear threat to have the NMDS finished when they new the "real" threat was from space debris and the like!!! 8-}
  15. stevo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2001
    star 4
    Furthermore, do you even know the full capabilities of a nuke? Do you know what an airburst is and what it can do? Do you know what radiation is? Do you know what an EMP blast will do to the satillite network up that high or to a city below it? Do you know what a heat blast is? Do you know how many treaties we will be violating if we use nukes in our defense? Do you know how many environmentalists will be after the Military and Government for detonating nukes in our defense? Have you ever heard of the M.A.D. sceiniro[sp?]?

    Moscow and St.Petersburg are protected by nuclear based interceptors, the concept works and is accepted under the ABM treaty(something about being able to protect 1 silo and 2 major cities). It violates no treaties that I can think of. And shooting down an ICBM in the air will do less damage to us than having it bomb us. Yes, as I explained in one of my 2 earliest posts- I do know of the MAD theory. On the other hand, I have no idea how MAD will protect us now that Bush has pulled out of the ABM treaty.
  16. Ramius Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 8, 2002
    star 3
    Only if the leader of the crew is named Bruce right?

    Hehe, yea, it might help. Actually, I was being serious about a spacecraft being sent to an oncoming asterioid, umanned would probably be cheaper. Then detonate a nuke off to the side of the rock to change it's course.

    Question for stevo or CmdrMitthrawnuruodo, am I correct in thinking MAD stands for mutually assured destruction, or is it something else?

    It violates no treaties that I can think of. And shooting down an ICBM in the air will do less damage to us than having it bomb us.

    stevo I think what CmdrMitthrawnuruodo meant when he said
    Do you know how many treaties we will be violating if we use nukes in our defense? Do you know how many environmentalists will be after the Military and Government for detonating nukes in our defense?

    Shooting down a nuke with another nuke has the potential of causing as many problems had it hit the intended target. Let's say an ICBM is launched at the U.S. and we shoot it down over a city. For example, Paris. The insuing EMP might take Paris back 100 years, all computers wiped out. Or, if the interception took place at a much lower altitude, Paris would be destroyed.

    The world gets outraged when we accidentally kill a few dozen Afgan people, think how enraged they'll get over thousands of people dead.

    Let's say an ICBM is coming at the U.S. on the Western sea board. We intercept it over the ocean, but the wind takes the fallout, potentially causing thousands to evacuat.


    My point is that there are much better ways to shoot down an ICBM than with just another nuke.
  17. stevo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2001
    star 4
    What way would that be? With chemical lasers? . . . .(scoffs)
  18. Ramius Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 8, 2002
    star 3
  19. JediStryker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 4
    What way would that be? With chemical lasers? . . . .(scoffs)

    Why do you scoff?
  20. CmdrMitthrawnuruodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2000
    star 6
    Yes, Ramius its Mutally Assurd Destruction.

    Moscow and St.Petersburg are protected by nuclear based interceptors, the concept works and is accepted under the ABM treaty(something about being able to protect 1 silo and 2 major cities). It violates no treaties that I can think of. And shooting down an ICBM in the air will do less damage to us than having it bomb us. Yes, as I explained in one of my 2 earliest posts- I do know of the MAD theory. On the other hand, I have no idea how MAD will protect us now that Bush has pulled out of the ABM treaty.


    Huh? That wasn't what I was talking about. Last I checked, one of the features of the MAD theory is that both Russian and American silos are on automatic standby to launch ICBMs should the other side launch. This way, if say Russia launches a first strike our missiles will automatically respond and nuke Russia off the map. I don't know if either side has disabled this feature now that Pakistan and India and other middle eastern countries have nuke capabilites. But our government wont use nukes to defend ourselves from incoming nukes without touching off said feature or pissing off the Russians and other countries.

    The world gets outraged when we accidentally kill a few dozen Afgan people, think how enraged they'll get over thousands of people dead.

    Let's say an ICBM is coming at the U.S. on the Western sea board. We intercept it over the ocean, but the wind takes the fallout, potentially causing thousands to evacuat.


    Thank you Ramius. That was exactly what I was trying to get across with those questions.

  21. GrandAdmiralJello Community and Lit moderator person

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Nov 28, 2000
    star 10
    Nuking a nuke? What kind of idea is that!?

    Utterly rediculous. A conventional warhead would be able to knock out a nuclear weapon, especially if it was armed with ion-scattering molecules.

    Nukes don't detonate without an arming signal. A missile could take down a nuke without any problems.
  22. stevo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2001
    star 4
    A missile can take down a nuke without any probelms?????

    Like I said earilier, we do not have the technology to fit such sophisticated machinery into a missile to have it hit a nuke sucessfully. Just look at the ABM tests.

  23. CmdrMitthrawnuruodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2000
    star 6
    Actually I think we do have the technology to do just that.

    Ever heard of MANUAL-CONTROLLED Tomahawks? or the Predator Spy Plane?

    Both devices use video cameras in the nose and transmit what it sees to someone deep inside a Carrier with a Joystick and they control it as if it were a video game.

    GPS devices can also help keep the missiles on course for the hostile missile. Switch over to manual and the controller can take out the hostile missile.
  24. stevo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2001
    star 4
    Then explain to me why 80% of the missiles do not intercept the target. I understand that no system is perfect- - - the errors have to be worked out, but its had over 20 years to work out and dozens of billions of dollars and we've gotten no where.

    Even if it does work, it just creates more political instability.

    EDIT: I just remembered, we can't arm space until another 7 years. In 1999 all the countries in the U.N., with the exception of the U.S. and Israel, voted against arming space. In other words-- no laser weapons in space.
  25. CmdrMitthrawnuruodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2000
    star 6
    20 years ago we didn't have UAVs or the tech that allows UAVs to exist.

    5-10 years ago we didn't have UAVs and were just beginning to dabble into the tech.

    During those 20 years we were also part of the ABM treaty. Thinking politically, we could bend the ABM treaty to allow us to test various technologies to create a NMDS and make it appear that it isn't successful so that we don't actually end up breaking the ABM treaty.

    Why would we do this? 20 years ago, we weren't friends with Russia. If we pulled out of the ABM treaty 20 years ago or 10 years ago, Russia would pull out and begin their own NMDS. This could end up leading to a nuclear war between the US and Russia.

    Ever wondered why we pulled out now? Besides Bush being an idiot? Maybe we do have the technology from all those tests and in order to build the NMDS we had to pull out of the ABM treaty. Furthermore, Pakistan has Medium-ranged rockets that can reach all the way to Paris, France. The way things are going in the Middle East, I don't think Pakistan will remain our friend for very long and when they get ICBMs of their own, how long do you think it will take for them to start pointing their nukes at us?

    Course, this is all speculation.
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