Re: eeyore and tigger

From: John Clark (
Date: Sun Jun 11 2000 - 01:24:31 MDT

Spike Jones <> Wrote:

>the last two THAAD missile firings, both successful.

I'd be very skeptical of the military's claim of success. The main problem
has always been distinguishing the warhead from the cloud of decoys that
would certainly be there. A few years ago they claimed to have solved the
problem and had a successful test, but much later it turned out that they'd
installed a electric heater on the mock warhead so it gave off a much
stronger infrared signal. The latest round of testing is no more honest a inside
informant told the New York Times on Friday. With realistic decoys the
system had absolutely no luck finding the warhead so they just dumbed down the
testing. First they reduced the number of decoys, it didn't help, then they tried to
make sure the radar signal of the decoys was either much greater or much less
than the decoys and that did help, but not enough. Finely they made sure all decoys
were highly polished and perfectly spherical so their radar signature wouldn't
change, the mock warhead was cone shaped and as it tumbled the radar signal
flashed and made it very easy to spot.

> You may have heard by now about how the national missile defense
> is all a big reaganesque fantasy, etc. I was just wondering if anyone
> here has any strong opinions in this regard.

I think it's a screwy idea. It would never work against a massive attack because
defense will always be more expensive than offence, if it takes 10 dollars to
shoot down 10 cents of hardware the other side will just overwhelm you. As for a
small attack, well if I were an insane dictator of some little jerkwater country I wouldn't
use ICBM's to deliver my bombs, they're harder to make than nukes and much more
expensive; I'd use FedEx or UPS to deliver my H Bomb, the transportation would only
cost a few dollars not a few billion. It has other advantages too, a rocket can be tracked
so everyone would know who was responsible for having Manhattan vaporized,
America might be irritated at me. Better if things just go boom and nobody knows why.
I could even send a letter of condolence afterwards.

           John K Clark

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