Saturday, February 24, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Tuesday, May 18, 2010
The New START Threat to Missile Defense
By Heritage Foundation @ 1:37 PM :: 8420 Views :: Energy, Environment, National News, Ethics, World News, Family


On March 26 the White House released a fact sheet on the New START Treaty. It claimed that the agreement signed by President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitri Medvedev "does not contain any constraints on testing, development or deployment of current or planned U.S. missile defense programs."

But the Russians seem to have a different interpretation of the document they signed. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters in Moscow on April 6th that Russia would exit the treaty if "the U.S.’s build-up of its missile defense strategic potential in numbers and quality begins to considerably affect the efficiency of Russian strategic nuclear forces. … Linkage to missile defense is clearly spelled out in the accord and is legally binding."

So which is it? Does New START place limits on U.S. missile defense or not? While an April 8th State Department fact sheet on "Ballistic Missile Defense and New START Treaty" mirrored the March 26th language, an "updated" April 21st State Department fact sheet showed significant movement towards the Russian position. It says, "The New START Treaty does not constrain the United States from deploying the most effective missile defenses possible."

Notice the change? The Obama administration has backtracked from "does not contain any constraints on testing, development or deployment of current or planned U.S. missile defense programs" to "does not constrain the United States from deploying the most effective missile defenses possible." So are only the "most effective missile defenses" allowed by New START? As determined by whom? By the Russians? By Obama's nominee to be Associate Director for the National Security and International Affairs, Office of Science and Technology Policy Philip Coyle? Coyle, by the way, has made a name for himself by questioning whether missile defense is technically possible, despite a proven track record of repeated successes by the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency. If a new U.S. President who actually believes in missile defense is elected, would that Commander in Chief be constrained by what President Obama and anti-missile defense advocates like Coyle thought qualified as "effective missile defense"?

This morning at 10 AM EST, the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations will hold its first hearing on the New START Treaty. The first witness is scheduled to be Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. Maybe she can explain why the April 8th State Department fact sheet had to be updated with the April 21st version. Maybe she can explain why Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Ellen Tauscher used the April 8th language "the Treaty does not constrain U.S. missile defense programs" as opposed to the equivocal April 21st language when she testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee on April 22nd.

And New START's problems do not end with its constraints on missile defense. An independent assessment by the New START Working Group has identified other key problems with the agreement including: the possible exclusion of rail-mobile ICBMs from coverage under the Treaty’s launcher limits, the lack of a proper definition of air-launched ICBMs under the counting rules and the fact that the U.S. and Russia have failed to agree on the matter of limitations on the U.S. missile defense program.

David J. Kramer, who spent more than eight years at State and now works as a fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, told Heritage's Robert Bluey: "The Russians have to spin this at home as saying they have laid down markers on missile defense. Here in the United States, the administration is going to underscore that this in no way ties the administration’s hands on missile defense. These are rather contradictory messages coming from Moscow and Washington on a fairly critical issue." The Senate needs to start sorting these contradictions out. Today.




  • Iran reached a surprise nuclear agreement with Brazil and Turkey yesterday, undermining the Obama administration's plans to impose economic sanctions on Tehran.
  • The Obama administration's signature housing bailout program, Making Home Affordable, is dropping homeowners from the program at an increasing rate.
  • A 2002 Justice Department Office of Legal Counsel memo concluding that state police officers have "inherent power" to arrest undocumented immigrants for violating federal law is making it difficult for the Obama administration to challenge Arizona's new immigration law.
  • President Barack Obama refused to take questions from the press at the official signing ceremony for the Press Freedom Act.
  • Echoing President Obama's call for conservatives to "get out of the way," Woody Allen told a Spanish language newspaper that he too wished "the Republican Party should get out of his way" and that "it would be good…if [Obama] could be a dictator for a few years because he could do a lot of good things quickly."

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


808 Silent Majority

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center


Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii


Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together



Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Moms for Liberty

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

July 4 in Hawaii

Kakaako Cares

Keep Hawaii's Heroes

Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii


Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

ReRoute the Rail

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

School Choice in Hawaii

Sink the Jones Act

Statehood for Guam

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

UCC Truths

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

VAREP Honolulu

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii