The unintended consequences of missile defense

Ron Lipsman
There is a remarkable article in the October issue of The American Spectator by John Train entitled At Sea on an Aegis Destroyer. In it, Train gives a very upbeat assessment of the status of American capabilities at sea-based ballistic missile defense. What I find remarkable is, on the one hand, the detailed content of the piece and, on the other, an unfortunate consequence that Train might not have foreseen. The details that Train supplies on the specs of a recently deployed US anti-ballistic missile destroyer, as well as the underlying strategies that govern its behavior, are surprisingly explicit: It all happens so fast that the decisions - detecting the attacking missile's launch, calculating its trajectory, generating the firing solution, and launching the shipboard SM-3 missile to intercept - are made at lightning speed by computers, not by the destroyer's commander, who could not possible decide fast enough So you put the necessary general instructions and specific...(Read Full Post)