The US missile defense shield: striving for absolute leadership

On Monday (June, 6) the USS Porter (DDG-78), a guided-missile destroyer has entered the Black Sea. The USS Porter is a part of the US missile defense "shield" as it is equipped with Standard Missile interceptors. It is expected that the USS Porter will visit Odessa.

This fact is alarming, especially if considering that on March, 4 the Navy сcompleted first live fire test of SeaRAM from destroyer. "The SeaRAM, which replaces the Phalanx Close-In Weapon System’s 20mm gun with a Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) Block II launcher, is in production for use on the Littoral Combat Ship". The US Naval Institute said that "last spring an emergent need arose in the Mediterranean – a new Russian threat, the details of which remain classified, put the four Spain-based DDGs at risk as the ships focused on a ballistic missile defense target". And this news is really troubling. This test again confirms the idea that the US ballistic missile defense system (BMDS) is deploying to counter Russia.

Though on June, 7 the US Ambassador to Russia John Teft wrote on the VK social network that the US BMD plans in Europe are not oriented against Russia and they won't undermine Russian strategic forces. The reality is that all these words are just the concealment of real American plans. Well, Teft wrote, "Russia turned down all the proposals, which could contribute to developing cooperation and transparency. It was the Russian side that unilaterally terminated the partnership dialogue in 2013". Such statement made by Teft means that he doesn't want to admit that the USA had refused all Russian suggestions. And it was Washington who has cut off the dialogue on missile defense theme, using Ukrainian crisis as the far-fetched pretext.

On Tuesday (June, 7) the White House also echoed that the US missile defense operational complex doesn’t pose a threat to Russia. The White House as usual asserted that it is "designed to counter" limited attacks from Iran and North Korea. However, Deputy Defense Secretary Bob Work once underlined that Russia is one of the "most advanced missile operators in the world". According to Work, this information should resolve Moscow's concerns. In practice this phrase sets Russia thinking, analyzing previous American and NATO actions. It is not the secret that the USA strives for absolute global military and political domination. Then no wonder that Washington works for weakening the Russian Federation. If someone still has doubts in anti-Russian direction of the US BMD system, should remember that the new US missile defense base in Romania recently has become operational and the USA proceeds to a final phase of the European Phased Adaptive Approach - an Aegis Ashore ballistic missile defense site in Redzikovo, Poland. At the same time no one should forget that at NATO Summit in Chicago the transatlantic Alliance has decided to make an appropriate mix of missile defense, conventional and nuclear arms. It looks like that the upcoming NATO Summit will stamp the same forward-based "mix".

According to Vladimir Kozin, the Chief Adviser of the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies and the author of the book "Evolution of the U.S. Missile Defense Beyond 2014 and Russia's Stance" (Moscow, 2016; 446 pages), during 12 last years the U.S. side has used missile defense consultations with Moscow to continue its global missile defense deployment and not only in Europe, by using such talks as a camouflage. Now, Washington tries again to divert attention of the Russian Federation from the U.S. BMDS complexes in Romania and later to be constructed in Poland. That's why recently Deputy Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs Rose Gottemoeller announced an initiative to restart talks with Russia on missile defense. "Apparently, when Americans put on full combat the missile defense operational complex in Romania and launched a ground-breaking ceremony of the same kind facility in Redzikovo, Poland, they have decided to launch "a sweet candy" campaign in mass media to once again cheat Moscow and the world public opinion about their real intentions". Vladimir Kozin continues that if new talks or consultations on this topic are opened with the new U.S. administration, they should focus on completely different agenda: instead of forging a 'cooperative BMDS' with the USA, the Russian Federation should submit the following proposals to a new U.S. President: the U.S. missile defense base in Romania should be frozen; all interceptors emplaced at it must be removed from Mk-41 silos and send back to the USA, and the construction of the same "Aegis Ashore" base in Poland should be stopped completely.

Moreover, Americans should sit down to talk with other states that have a missile defense capabilities to manufacture missile defense systems in order to sign a new multilateral  international ABM treaty, which could limit the maximum ceilings for each sides' BMDS interceptors, and define the scope of their deployments on foreign territories and at high seas.  In so doing the nations concerned could well stop the 'BMDS arms race' which is unfolding without any control, the RISS expert concludes.

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