Las Vegas Sun

July 23, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Missile defense needs beefing up

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In a recent column, Ed Feulner had an accurate article on damage to the U.S. by an electromagnetic pulse. To bring home to the citizens of the Las Vegas Valley what a nuclear attack here would mean, a modest size nuclear warhead detonated here would kill a reasonably estimated 400,000 people — a fifth of the population.

The U.S. does not have a good missile defense system. Although the Obama administration is going to add additional missiles to the Alaska installation, it is taking funds from the Navy missile defense research program. Much research is needed to build a satisfactory system.

The current estimates are that North Korea cannot hit the lower 48 states today, but perhaps in a few years. But it takes a long time to develop and build an improved missile defense system, so we will not be more protected when North Korea can attack unless Congress and the administration really push the defense system research, development and deployment now. One would think the West Coast senators, including Harry Reid, would be strongly behind this program since their constituents would be the primary targets.

There are other ways to get a nuclear weapon into the Las Vegas Valley. North Korea could just give a weapon to al-Qaida and have the group bring it across our porous borders and detonate the weapon. Perhaps we need to solve the porous border problem also.

I personally would like to be safe instead of relying on intelligence estimates that North Korea is “unlikely” to attack.

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  1. Read Future's post above. President Obama believed he could talk his way to peace with the likes of Russia, China, North Korea, Syria, Iran, al Qaida, Hezbollah, and on and on. Obama scrubbed the ICBM that Reagan and Bush said was so much needed. And now after wasting 4 years is playing catch up to protect the east and west coasts of the U.S. from North Korea and Iran missile launched nukes. Not only that, while this President was making secret promises to Medvedev about reducing ICBM's in Europe, and Poland in particular, guess what Russia was doing? Rebuilding and fortifying surface to air missile defense in Syria. The U.S. can't even impose a no-fly zone over Syria because Russian made and manned STA missiles will shoot our jets out of the sky! How's that Al Green singing working for this cool cat President?

    Carmine D

  2. Why would any of our enemies nuke Las Vegas? It's well known that nothing saps moral strength like gambling, drugs and whores. Were I an enemy of the US I would invest heavily in those industries and work to get them legal in every state.

  3. Up here in the heartland of right-wing paranoia, NE Washington, I have a friend busily building Faraday cages for his electronic communications devices and computers. He is a believer in the "end is nigh" scenario. He has not yet computed that use of those devices will depend on a working grid should the end come. Personally I'm sticking with my vegetable garden, chickens, a pre-electronic diesel pickup and a decent shotgun.

  4. The above paranoia is why we spend 40% of the world's defense budget. An electromagnetic pulse in Las Vegas. Give me a break! The letter writer probably lives in an abandoned missile silo with Glenn Beck.

    If you look at how many wars the United States has been involved in its difficult to add them all up. There is only one country that is constantly meddling in the affairs of other nations and that is the United States.

  5. If you want to piss some money away figure out how to get water to the Western United States and Texas. These regions of the country are experiencing drought conditions that are nothing less than staggering. Let's get some water and then spend a few trillion on the electromagnetic pulse threat.

  6. A new missile defense system? It's great for the defense industry, but that's about all. By the time it is deployed, it is obsolete. These ground-to-air systems have been around since the 50s and should have been left there. Want an effective platform? It must be space-based. But we don't want to do that -- we are always politically correct. But our enemies will -- as soon as they're capable. Think about it.

  7. Bywharfrat(Pat Hayes),

    Why would any of our enemies nuke Las Vegas?

    The reason they may nuke Las Vegas is because Nellis Air Force Base has been storing nuclear weapons for more than 40 years.That would be a very good reason for our enemies to try and nuke Las Vegas.

    The United States stores nuclear weapons in 13 states and Nevada is one of those states.Nuclear bombs are stored in Igloos at NAFB.Each Igloo holds approximately 50 B61 nuclear bombs.

  8. Paranoia and fear are the coin of political conservatives. No amount of preparation can ally such mental illness.
    Pat Hayes thinks her (his?) diesel truck is a survival tool...until it runs out of diesel. So called 'Prepers' will only last few days longer than if civilization breaks down. I wonder what medications they need that they plan to manufacture on their own?

  9. Historically, the development of defensive systems has always lagged behind the development of offensive systems. So it will always be. Why? Defensive systems are, by their very nature, reactive: defending against known actual or potential threats. Offensive systems are proactive: exploiting previously unknown concepts as a means of attack. This is just as true of a "missile defense system" as of a "computer virus defense system."

    Don't believe me? Go shopping for a computer antivirus program that is 100% guaranteed to protect against all POSSIBLE viruses (as opposed to one defending against all KNOWN viruses) and will still leave your computer readily usable.

  10. SgtRock: When (not if...) fascism comes to the United States, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a bible.

  11. "Where in the world has Future been hiding? Is he now sharing a bubble with Carmine and PvtPebble?"

    It's called the world of reality, as opposed to the fairy tale land of fantasy in your mind.

    Obama couldn't even deliver the Dems on the background checks even by using the victims of Newtown, CT on a 5 city tour across the nation. Sequester backfired. GOP called Obama's bluff. Obama care is unraveling. Two Dem Senators, Baucus [retiring]] and Reid, said it needs more do-re-me [read juice] to be viable. Benghazi is back. Boston is still here. Foreign policy is in shambles. North Korea, Iran, Syria thumb their noses at Obama. Due to the hollow movable red lines he's drawn in the sand.

    Bush kept the U.S. safe here and abroad from 9/12/2001 to January 2009. Obama couldn't.

    Carmine D

  12. "Obama is systematically cleaning up all of W's administrations messes."

    When Obama follows Bush's policies to a "T" he is praised. When he ventures out on a limb, he falls flat on his face.

    Carmine D

  13. Anyone that thinks former Pres.G.W.Bush kept this country safe is dead wrong.The only thing Bush did was get us into 2 wars that he left unfinished.

    It's a good thing Pres G.W.Bush is not president today,with N.Korea rattling it's saber. He'd be saying they have weapons of mass destruction,and probably invade with no plan for victory or exit.

    What ever title history puts on former Pres.G.W.Bush he will have earned it all by himself.

  14. "CarmineD, where were those Russian missles during the recent Israeli airstrikes? Or do the missles only work on U.S. aircraft?"

    Israel launched them from inside Israel. Not from over Syria. Pays to know the facts before you ask the questions. ;-)

    Carmine D

  15. Really, Jeff? How so, lad? What the Israelis showed by their attacks this weekend is that Syria is vulnerable to off shore weaponry and missile attacks. Pretty smart on the Israelis part.

    Carmine D