The right wing has latched on to North Korea’s unsuccessful missile launch to renew its calls for increased funding for the Pentagon’s failed $92-billion missile defense system. Yesterday on Fox News, Rep. Dana Rohrbacher (R-CA) attacked Democratic “backbiters” and “naysayers” — including guest Rep. Bob Filner (D-CA) — for questioning the program. Watch it:
But despite Rohrbacher’s rhetoric, the U.S. missile defense system can’t — and probably never will — protect the nation against an attack. Some problems:
– The Pentagon’s Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system “hasn’t successfully intercepted a missile since October of 2002. … And the last two times it tried to hit an oncoming missile, the interceptor didn’t even leave the ground. Things have gotten so bad that the Missile Defense Agency’s independent review team concluded last year that more tests may only undermine the GMD’s value as a deterrent.”
– “A little-noticed study by the Government Accountability Office issued in March found that program officials were so concerned with potential flaws in the first nine interceptors now in operation that they considered taking them out of their silos and returning them to their manufacturer for ‘disassembly and remanufacture.’“
Full transcript here.