What are your thoughts on National Missile Defense?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Frohickey, Apr 7, 2004.

  1. Frohickey macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    I think that a National Missile Defense system is a good thing to have around, both as a proving ground for new technology and a small deterrent to limited missile strikes.

    Another thing that I see that this is good for is it allows progress to be made on this technology. Do enough iterations of this, and it could become a Planetary Asteroid Defense system.

    Supposedly, asteroids/comets are what caused the extinction of the dinosaurs, and the Earth will always be in danger of these types of extraterrestial collisions. A PAD system would be some insurance and breathing room to allow humans to get off the Earth, maybe to a terraformed Mars or Venus, and then to Infinity, and BEYOND!!! :D
     
  2. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #2
    It deserves minor research status until it is proven to work and actually function as a deterrent. The technology is important, but not more important than things like having body armor for all our men and women in harms way.
     
  3. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #3
    the political damage is causing is greater than any actual protection the system could provide for at least 20 years.

    i would be less opposed if the research and deployment were co-funded and co-developed by other nations, including russia, china, france, UK.
     
  4. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    But there is also something to be gleaned from doing it on your own. Parallel efforts would make it so that one snag that trips up one country won't necessarily trip up another. In co-development efforts, what you end up having is one development effort, where the others are just along for the ride. You lose the redundancy from parallel efforts.

    Russia could do it alone. They are starting to become flush with cash after their flat income tax rates in the teens. So, they can start their own program.

    China wouldn't for a while. They are still trying to dig themselves out of the 1950s where Mao left them. So, they won't be ready for a while.

    France. How much effort do you need to dig a small hole in the ground to hide your head in and wave a white flag? :p

    I could see multiple systems of National Missile Defense, approaching the problem from multiple angles. Then, when we finally have the Son-of-Hubble space telescope, and we find that a 50 kilometer comet is barrelling our way from outer space, we can pool our knowledge together and push it out of the way.

    I still have the sneaking suspicion though that whatever effort we come up with, it will have the ability to transform into a giant Robo, piloted by 5 people with wild haircuts. :D
     
  5. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    Actually, I think that body armor for the military is best if its purchased through the private sector. That way, you have constant improvements being made, and each one will not be price similarly to the DoD $500 hammer. It could be purchased by the individual soldiers, and the various units can compensate them for it, just like they compensate them for uniforms and other gear.
     
  6. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #6
    Why should the Russians bother, they've already developed a missle system capable of defeating our missle shield? And for a LOT less than we've spent on a defense system.
     
  7. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #7
    And you don't see the potential for abuse of this system? Hi, I just bought this awesome $50,000 diamond-kevlar vest from my cousin. I'd like to be reimbursed please.

    And what if the soldier can't afford the armor in the first place? Oh yeah, if you can't afford something you deserve to die.
     
  8. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #8
    there's nothing inherently bad about any kind of cooperation that good management can't turn into success. everything from high school kids working on a project, to intra-agency projects, to building a mac, to international cooperation. i don't buy it.
     
  9. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #9
    true.

    i think it's folly to build a defense system for the threat of a large ICBM strike. MAD (mutually assured destruction) has been a fine deterrent for decades.

    the point of the ABM system would be to protect against
    a) accidental launches (small scale)
    b) rogue nation w/ only a couple nukes

    that's a purpose into which the russians, etc. could buy. and by including them, we'd avoid the buildup that bush has already caused by his go-it-alone approach. way to reverse years of disarmament, george. wanker.
     
  10. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #10
    Yes, flush with cash. They have so much they can now almost afford half of their budget.

    The Russian military is in really bad shape and is terribly underfunded. They can't feed and clothe their troops and are in constant fear of their subs and other ships sinking. I don't think any expensive new projects are in the cards.
     
  11. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #11
    Russia is busted, the only reason they are doing well is because of oil, and even though Russia has simplified their tax system the majority of people don't pay taxes. Did you read about the nuclear powered aircraft carrier that was called back to port because it was in such bad shape it could blow up at any moment? Hardly sounds like a military that is able to launch a missile defense system.

    You're mistaken with China too. I believe that in the next 20 years they will be the supreme power on this planet. The US century is over and done with and any ideas that we will be some super interplanetary cop is just a bunch of bunk. We can't even afford the military that we have much less some insane and imaginary missile defense system.
     
  12. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    Thats why it would be an allowance, with a maximum limit that is probably the MSRP of an applicable vest. If there is abuse of the system, at least the abuse has a top limit. Its not really out of the realm anyway. Soldiers have uniform allowances built into their pay, and a vest would be just another item in that uniform allowance.
     
  13. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    How come I feel like Donald Sutherland's character in Kelly's Heroes, Sgt Oddball, the tank commander.

    So many negative vibes in here.
     
  14. JamesDPS macrumors regular

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    #14
    Makes sense to me, I mean, the vest IS a part of the uniform for combat soldiers (or anyone in harm's way), right? So have several private companies who are "certified" by the military compete to make the best protection out there... only risk would be people wanting to cut corners by either buying an inferior vest or companies cutting corners for profitability, but the military has to cut corners occasionally anway as it is... ergo no vests for some of the troops at all! (sorry, don't have a link to the appropriate news item).
     
  15. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    Have you started to read and write Chinese yet?
     
  16. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #16
    i took cantonese lessons for a while, but only speaking
     
  17. Thanatoast macrumors 6502a

    Thanatoast

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    #17
    Not to be harsh, but NMD is a boondoggle. It didn't even make sense in the 80's when it *may* have been useful, assuming it didn't start a nuclear war.

    There are several reasons why NMD is a bad idea.

    First, it doesn't work. Hitting one missle with another is much harder than it sounds, and the system can be easily circumvented by creative attacks (zig-zagging missles) or basic tactics (destroying radar bases, *then* attacking).

    Second, it's too expensive. Should be obvious. Bush is driving the country into the ground with his half-trillion dollar military budgets and tax cuts for the rich. If he wants a new missle system, he can goddamn well find the money for it in the pockets of the rich. I don't want this POS.

    Third, it drew us out of the ABM treaty. Bush claims to want us safe from missle attacks, then removes us from the treaty designed to prevent them. Genius.

    Fourth, the nature of the threat has changed. The chances of a "rogue nation" launching on us are none to less. We've already "proved our resolve" by invading a nation that didn't even have WMD, so what do you think would happen if someone actually launched an attack on us? We would knock them back so fast their collective heads would spin, and we'd be justified in our response. Well, this is what *would've* happened before W tied up 100,000 troops in Viet...I mean, Iraq.

    Fifth, it encourages attack before it's complete. If we have a defense system that doesn't allow anyone to harm us, when is the best time to attack? Before it's finished.

    Sixth, it destabilizes international relations. The US is already the biggest, baddest bully on the block. Our military can destroy any conventional target anywhere on the face of the planet, with or without the cooperation of allies. Now not only do we want to be able to attack anyone, anywhere, anytime, we also don't want to allow any retaliation. This makes sense from a military point of view, but when one nation holds all the cards and there's not even a way to respond to an attack by that nation, it makes everyone else real nervous.

    Seventh, tactics have changed. We're no longer under threat from hostile national powers. Terrorism is the new war. Bombs in suitcases, suicide bombers, etc are all really difficult to defend from with NMD.

    That's just off the top of my head. NMD is a waste of time and resources. What's worse is, when the current administration leaves (whenever that may be), it will be too late to stop it. It will already be rolling, and if some clearer-thinking president sees that it's a bad idea and tries to shut it down, conservatives will scream bloody murder. Put another hash-mark down on the "W's ****-ups" list. :mad:
     
  18. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

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    #18
    i'd think it was a good idea if i were really really paranoid that the people that "hate freedom" (whatever that means) had some means to attack us that such a system would actually work against. but instead, i say let's go ahead and pull out funding for fire/rescue/police, after all, they're only on the ground (where the real attacks would occur)
     
  19. Frohickey thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    Ah. If only the Wright brothers, Edison, Alexander Bell and others thought like you, they would be happy men that lived uneventful lives.

    Radar was thought to be impossible, until it was done. It cost a lot to perfect as well.

    The ABM treaty was signed by the Soviet Union, which is no more.

    Its always good to be prepared. Were you ever a Boy Scout?

    If it encourages attack before its complete, then maybe we should finish it as soon as possible, eh? So, is it better to be defenseless then? Maybe we should unilaterally disarm, and disband the US Army. That way, we will not be attacked? :confused:
     
  20. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #20
    sorry, i'm not motivated by such fear
     
  21. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

    pseudobrit

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    #21
    Oh, hahahahahahahahahaa! I get it! The French are pussies! What original racist humour! You should go into standup with that joke as your centerpiece.
     
  22. wwworry macrumors regular

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    #22
    Strange

    It's weird that you want soldier kids to buy their own body armor but you want the government to "pay" for a shield that does not work.

    currently they want to deploy a system that does not work even when they have the coordinates of the missile and they know when the missile will be coming, it doesn't work.

    Yet you would have 20 year olds using their own money to buy body armor and let "competition" sort it all out? So the ones that make a bad choice are dead and can't reproduce? So all these body armor companies spend millions on advertising? How is all the advertising going to make a better product or make it cheaper?

    One would hope the pentagon procurment system might be able to make a good choice here and put the requirements and specifications up for bid like anything else.

    Shouldn't private enterprise build a defence system then sell it to us, according to your usual logic? Why should we pay for a roll out of a system that does not work? Who do we sue (your usual solution) when it fails?
     
  23. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #23
    <offtopic>
    great movie
    most favourite scene: when they hit the enemy tiger in the back only with a colour grenade instead of a real one-> the look on his face: priceless
    </offtopic>

    i think a missile defense shield would be completly wasted ressources
    a ICBM warhead moving at least with mach 15 is a very difficult target and those warheads are small and rather solid built

    how many defense-rockets would you need for 1 incoming ICBM-warhead ? 3 ? 5 ? 10 ?
    when i think about the size of the USA ...that would be lot of missiles available 24/7
    how will the missile defense system defend itself against anti-radar systems ? with the brand new anti-missile-defense-system-missile-defense-system ?


    "Radar was thought to be impossible, until it was done"

    the royal airforce thought it would be impossible for the germans to develop radar and refused to put radar detection instruments(which were available at this time) in their night-bombers....

    to feel safe because of technological advance is dangerous,
    1.perhaps you aren't so technological advance as you think
    2.high technical systems tend to fail exactly then when you need them the most
    3.there is often something forgotten during planning stage
     
  24. Thanatoast macrumors 6502a

    Thanatoast

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    #24
    Edison, the Wright bros and Bell weren't working on a system that cost billions that the nation couldn't afford, didn't work against current tactics, destabilized int'l relations and ecouraged attack sooner, rather than negotiating peace later.

    As for radar, see above.

    The Soviet Union is no more. Fine. Does that mean that reducing the nuclear threat is no longer a valid goal? If anything, the chaos in Russia should have made ABM even more important, and new treaties should have been drawn up to stregthen it. The Moscow Treaty would be a joke if it weren't so damn scary. If anyone's interested, I can elaborate in another post.

    I think unilaterally disarming all our nuclear warheads would be an awesome idea. What better way to show the world we mean business when it comes to nuclear arms control? Disband the army? No, I like the military when it's used as a tool and not as a policy. Radically restructure the military to be drastically smaller? Sure. If we really needed to respond to a massive attack, I'm sure there would be plenty of volunteers to fight the good fight. At least, if the current administration is claiming that we are fighting the good fight, then there should be plenty of volunteers, right?

    And what about the other problems I mentioned?

    The anti-anti missle system that renders our technology oboselte before it even works?

    The enormous cost to support a system that doesn't work?

    The destabilization of international relations?

    And the new tactics that no longer make a NMD worthwhile?

    It's a boondoggle. Nothing good will come of it.
     
  25. wwworry macrumors regular

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    #25
    If they could develope a system that worked, well then great. But as it is the missile defence shield has become more a political touch stone than a functioning system. We do actually, as hard as it is to believe, have limited resources. Why an administration would eschew funding of programs that might make a difference, like decommissioning Soviet Union era nuclear stock piles, like the ABM treaty, to push forward a multri-billion dollar system that does not work is beyond comprehension.

    The best system would be a world wide panopticon with built in tasars so that we could see what everyone is doing and if they are doing something wrong we would zap them. But that won't happen either. It's all about bang for your buck. Put a little money into research. Wait for the next G6 cluster super computer tracker. and in the meantime do something better than build a system that will have to be thrown out when they have something that actually works.

    Currently anyone that launches an ICBM attack on the US would have to be nuts. They would do it even if they thought we had a working defence system so bluffing about our system capabilities is not going to work. More likely they would send a shipping container into Los Angelos harbor or New York harbor with some basket case on the trigger. If they do launch an attack they know they are screwed even if they hit their targets. Our submarines would take them out. An ICBM attack is a death wish either way.

    The Bush administration cuts funding for homeland security, harbor patrol, etc.

    There are flying cars that you can buy. Why aren't we buying them?
     

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