‘Spike’ in Bear H flights over past week seen as test of U.S. air defenses
by Bill Gertz • Washington Free Beacon
Russian strategic nuclear bombers conducted at least 16 incursions into northwestern U.S. air defense identification zones over the past 10 days, an unusually sharp increase in aerial penetrations, according to U.S. defense officials.
The numerous flight encounters by Tu-95 Russian Bear H bombers prompted the scrambling of U.S. jet fighters on several occasions, and come amid heightened U.S.-Russia tensions over Ukraine.
Also, during one bomber incursion near Alaska, a Russian intelligence-gathering jet was detected along with the bombers. Continue reading
NATO faces a challenge to modernize and sustain its nuclear posture and missile defense deployments in Europe at a time of declining defense budgets on the one hand and expanded threats on the other. The threats from Russia, the Middle East, and North Africa are serious and growing from both ballistic missile arsenals and nuclear programs.
At the same time, there are political pressures within NATO pushing for the adoption of a “zero nuclear” posture as well as efforts to delay significantly U.S. and allied missile defense and nuclear modernization deployments. This comes as threatening countries adopt military and political doctrines that emphasize the use of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles as instruments of state power. Continue reading
The long thirty one year debate over missile defenses for the United States begun with the President Reagan announcement of the strategic defense initiative in March 1983 has now reached a critical stage.
The initial building of defenses in 2002 with the US withdrawal from the ABM Treaty has now reached where in the US arsenal there are over 1200+ interceptors of all kinds that can deal with short, medium and long range rockets aimed at the United States and its allies. Continue reading
June 27, 2014, Washington, D.C. – On June 22nd, the Missile Defense Agency and a high tech industry team that designed and built the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system conducted a complex test and successfully intercepted and destroyed a target in flight over the Pacific Ocean. George Landrith, president of Frontiers of Freedom, made the following statement:
“This successful test is one more example of what America can do to protect itself and render intercontinental missiles useless to harm us or our allies. This successful test demonstrates the wisdom of President Ronald Reagan and U.S. Senator Malcolm Wallop, both pioneers in calling for missile defenses in the 1970s and 1980s. Continue reading
Putin orders military exercises amid new Ukraine tensions
Russian strategic air forces fired six new, precision-strike cruise missiles in test launches Friday amid new tensions between Moscow and the West over the crisis in Ukraine.
Russia’s Defense Ministry announced Friday that the missile firings took place during exercises involving eight Tu-95 Bear bombers—the same type of strategic bomber recently intercepted 50 miles off the California coast by U.S. jets.
Russian bombers, meanwhile, continued saber-rattling air defense zone incursions against Canada’s arctic and in Europe over the Baltic Sea. Continue reading
On Sunday June 22, high over the Pacific Ocean, the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA), the U.S. Air Force 30th Space Wing, the Joint Functional Component Command, Integrated Missile Defense, U.S. Northern Command and the U.S. Navy successfully tested the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) element of the nation’s Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) crashing a kill vehicle at nearly 15,000 kilometers an hour into a test warhead, while simultaneously performing discrimination tasks flawlessly.
The interceptor was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, and intercepted a ballistic missile target launched from the U.S. Army’s Reagan Test Site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands.
This means that for the 65th time since 2001, the US missile defense system successfully demonstrated “hit to kill” technology often described as hitting a “bullet with a bullet”. Continue reading
On Friday, President Barack Obama ruled out sending U.S. troops back into Iraq to fight the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, or ISIS, fighters as they take over large areas of the country. He did leave the door open to a set of nebulously named “other options.” What form might those take? In May, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki made clear that he would allow the U.S. to carry out Predator and Reaper drone strikes in the country against groups hostile to his government. Today, many in Washington are asking when will the U.S. send drones back to Iraq? Continue reading
by Peter Roff
The world – as events in Iraq remind us – remains a dangerous place. The Russians are flexing their muscles while President Vladimir Putin tries to reassemble as much of the old Soviet Union as he can. The Chinese are trying to expand their territorial waters in Asia. North Korea apparently has the bomb while Iran wants one – badly.
In short, this is no time for the United States to step aside from its role as leader of the free world. As Franklin Roosevelt observed, America is “the arsenal of democracy,” making the weapons the rest of the world needs to secure their own defenses. Plans for downsizing the Pentagon until the U.S. military is at its smallest since before the surprise Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor places the nation and her allies at risk, especially from another surprise attack coming from an unexpected quarter. Continue reading
by Peter Huessy
Forty-three years ago, on Memorial Day 1971, I was traveling home to Vermont following two years of study at the International Division of Yonsei University in Seoul in the Republic of Korea. During my time there, I marveled at the success the Republic of Korea had achieved in building the beginnings of a modern industrial state while also being a staunch ally of the United States.
But in the ensuing decades, conventional wisdom in academia, Hollywood and the entertainment industry and the media turned this view on its head. The new “wisdom” concludes that the U.S. lost the war in Korea. And not only that. Even our victory in the Cold War now seems to be in question. Continue reading
Despite the fact that our Triad of forces has been a nuclear umbrella that has kept the nuclear powers from going to war against each other for 69 years, the anti-nuclear left continues to receive $300 in support for every $1 contributed to those who support our current nuclear deterrent efforts.
It is also becoming apparent that much of this effort on the left is designed to radically change our current nuclear deterrent strategy. This involves a push to break apart the nuclear Triad of bombers, submarines and land-based missiles deployed by the United States since the early 1960’s. And to significantly cut back on the number of deployed B2 and B52 bombers and Trident submarines we keep in the arsenal as well as a push to eliminate most or even all of our land based Minuteman missiles. Continue reading
by George Landrith
Budget cutters are rumored to have their eyes on the A-10 Thunderbolt, thinking that retiring it may generate much-needed savings.
When the government shutdown was over, President Obama and members of both parties in Congress said they would work together during the coming months toward a sustainable budget. Let’s all hope they do. Government spending must be brought under control, and we need to be smart about the cuts we make.
Congress should focus on cutting things that provide little in return and preserving things that work well and are cost-effective — especially at the Pentagon. The world is simply too dangerous a place to allow the nation’s defense capability to be hollowed out. As George Washington wisely observed, “To be prepared for war is one of the most effectual means of preserving peace.” Cuts that are “penny-wise and dollar foolish” do not help the taxpayer or our war fighters. Retiring the A-10 would be the very definition of “penny-wise and dollar foolish.” Continue reading
Leaders of other countries don’t respect President Barack Obama, said 53 percent of respondents in Gallup’s annual World Affairs poll, conducted Feb. 3-6. That only 53 percent of Americans think this is an indictment of the news media’s coverage of foreign affairs.
He would lead the world by “deed and example,” not try to “bully it into submission,” Sen. Barack Obama wrote in Foreign Affairs magazine in 2007.
In a major foreign policy speech in 2008, Mr. Obama said he would focus on “ending the war in Iraq responsibly; finishing the fight against al-Qaida and the Taliban; securing all nuclear weapons and materials from terrorists and rogue states; achieving true energy security; and rebuilding our alliances to meet the challenges of the 21st century.” Continue reading
Ronald Reagan said to conservatives, “You’re the troops. You’re out there on the frontier of freedom.”
A young soldier stands guard in the cold, looking out over no-man’s-land through to the other side of the demilitarized zone and into North Korea. President Reagan is visiting the troops there that day. During the visit the young soldier turns to the president, salutes and says, “Mr. President, when you get home, tell them we’re on the frontier of freedom.”
Reagan concludes his final speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference with this brief story. He compares the gathered conservative movers and shakers to the “troops” who — like the soldier in the story — are on the forefront of defeating “totalitarianism.”
He tells the story to them, “because,” he said, “you’re the troops.” He illustrates the comparison, telling them, “You’re out there on the frontier of freedom.” He then repeats what the soldier said to him (“Mr. President, we’re on the frontier of freedom.”) And immediately afterwards adds the pithy coda to the very end of the speech, “Well, so are you.”
And so we are. Or should be. Continue reading
History, in her disposition toward intellectually gifted peoples and nations, appears as fickle as the gods of ancient times were wont to be of their most devout revelers; the more those peoples and nations excelled the less they were shielded from endless tribulations, great catastrophes, and devastating tragedies. Like most of the nation-states of Europe and Asia, present-day Iran had a glorious history, yet unlike them, it has been torn since 1979 between revolutionary adventurism and reactionary self-preservation.
The fatal contradiction in Ayatollah Khomeini’s doctrine of the “guardianship of the jurist” (velayat-e faqih) is that, by definition, it contains the political seeds of its own destruction. Continue reading
How they were changed to obscure the truth
Even as the White House strove last week to move beyond questions about the Benghazi attacks of Tuesday, September 11, 2012, fresh evidence emerged that senior Obama administration officials knowingly misled the country about what had happened in the days following the assaults. The Weekly Standard has obtained a timeline briefed by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence detailing the heavy substantive revisions made to the CIA’s talking points, just six weeks before the 2012 presidential election, and additional information about why the changes were made and by whom. Continue reading