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Bring Missile Defense Down To Earth

Arthur Herman

The Defense Department has released the first report since 2010 on the state of America’s ballistic-missile defenses. The Missile Defense Review shows that missile defense is finally coming of age—36 years after President Reagan unveiled the Strategic Defense Initiative. Technologies to defend America from missile and nuclear attack were once the stuff of dreams. Now, in many cases, they have become reality. The challenge will be to develop and deploy those technologies in smart and effective ways.

By far the best way to protect the U.S. from attack by a rogue nation like North Korea is to destroy an intercontinental ballistic missile as it leaves the launchpad and heads for the outer atmosphere. During this “boost phase”—which lasts 200 to 300 seconds—an ICBM is at its slowest and most vulnerable, and its intense heat signature is easier for long-distance sensors to detect.

Read the full article on the Wall Street Journal website here

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