Re: more national missile defense

From: John Clark (
Date: Sun Jul 02 2000 - 09:02:25 MDT

Spike Jones <> Wrote:

>The news media loves to *claim* the successful tests
>were rigged, but in fact such claims reveal a failure to understand the
>nature of tests. One famous example is the ERIS test, in which the
>target contained a homing beacon. That test was a test of the concept
>of end game guidance using cruciform nozzles. It hit the target, so
>the intercept attempt was a success.

And when success was first triumphantly announced was there anything said
about a beacon, or a heater that was used on another test until years later?
Did the military say this had nothing to do with a practical weapon?
Not only did every test assume incredible stupidity on the part of the enemy
every test was downright dishonest toward the people actually paying for this thing.
Their credibility is zero, if they wish to regain people's trust there is only one thing
to do, declassify EVERYTHING.

> Was the Wright brother's flight at Kitty Hawk a realistic test?

Yes, it proved gravity could be defeated. No "test" has told us a thing about
how a nuclear enemy could be defeated.

>ERIS was a proof-of-concept that later led to the THAAD system.

Proof of what concept, that under the right condition a missile can shoot down
another missile? That didn't need proving everybody already knew it was true,
I want to know if a practical ABM system can ever be made to work.

>The customer was fully aware of the configuration of the target, and
>cheerfully paid to have it run.

The customer was the taxpayer, and I know of at least one who wasn't very
cheerful about the sham.

> A THAAD missile is far cheaper than the cost of the plutonium for a nuke alone.

Baloney! There is a worldwide glut of plutonium, nobody knows what to do with it all,
thousands of tons of the shit exist and more is made every day in every nuclear reactor
on earth, civilian as well as military. As I said before only a few pounds can make a bomb.

As for the vehicle itself, a defensive missile need to be super accurate, it's error radius
must be measured in inches. If an offensive missile's error radius is a hundred miles
that's fine.

A defensive missile absolutely positively must work perfectly every single time,
hardware like that doesn't come cheap. If 9 out of 10 offensive ICBMs fail on
launch it doesn't matter, with so much overkill the vast majority of H bombs would
do nothing but bounce charred bones and rubble anyway.

You can make offensive decoys that cost almost nothing, there are no defensive decoys.

One ICBM can have dozens of warheads and thousands of decoys. Defense must deal with
all of them.

>The blue team builds the targets, the red team builds the interceptor,
>the white team watches both to make sure nobody cheats.

Are you seriously trying to tell me that they're building targets for this thing
as cleverly as they know how to do? Ridiculous. If the blue team does too good
a job I have no doubt their chances of promotion would be zero. In the history of
the world has this "white team" of yours ever objected to anything?

> I can assure you the blue team is doing everything it can do to fool the target
>discrimination red team.

Then they're not very smart and we're unlikely to encounter an enemy that dumb.

> Agreed. Intercepting is a tougher problem than spoofing, currently.
> But remember, all the discrimination satellites are not in service. Yet...

And they won't be in service when their needed because I'll destroy them
before I attack. Unlike missiles, satellites are in orbit, I know exactly where
they are at all times. Satellites work great in peacetime but you can't rely
on them in war.

> of course the Union of Concerned Scientist's credibility is
> not exactly stellar in this particular field.

I've not heard anything bad about them but it doesn't matter, the idea of putting
the warhead in a aluminized balloon is a good one and I don't care if the suggestion
came from Adolph Hitler's illegitimate love child. It's cheap as dirt so there is only
one reason the government is not going to do it on Friday's test, they're afraid to.

>you imagine a technology (such as a multispectrum laser reflector/detector
>of some sort) in which a mylar balloon with something inside it would look vastly
> different from an empty mylar balloon?

I can imagine anything that doesn't violate the laws of physics, but I don't
want something from the imagination, I want a practical system.

>A mylar balloon is highly reflective in the limited spectral band our eyes
>recognize, however in some other spectral bands an aluminized mylar
>balloon is as transparent as a condom.

OK, an X ray laser scanning system that can fit inside a very small rocket and
can make the determination in a few nanoseconds. Spend a few hundred billion
dollars and I'll bet you could come up with something that worked pretty well, in
a lab. Congratulations, you have taken your first step in fighting your way inside
a 79 cent plastic bag.

>Also, a warhead can be fired upon after it hits the upper atmosphere
>and before it develops a plasma sheath, using the Patriot Advanced
>Capability or PAC3.

Such a rocket would be of extremely short range so you'd need thousands.
perhaps millions to cover the entire continental USA, but it wouldn't help anyway.
I'll first send a warhead to detonate 50 or 60 miles above your city, even in the unlikely
event your electronics are not fried by the EMP the resulting huge cloud of plasma
would be opaque to light, RADAR and infrared, I could send anything I wanted to
through it and you'd never know until it was much too late.

> then we should stay indefinitely with no-defense?

It's not something we choose, it's just the way things are. I wish defense had
gained the upper hand over offense too, but wishing does not make it so.

            John K Clark

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