Reassuring Russia On BMD
AIR WAR COLLEGE, AIR UNIVERSITY MAXWELL AFB United States
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The United States Ballistic Missile Defense comprehensive strategy states that the United States homeland missile defense capabilities are not focused on Russia, are not intended to affect the strategic balance with them, and are not of sufficient capacity to deal with Russian large scale attacks. However, Russia sees the United States expansion of international efforts and cooperation on missile defense as a contentious issue. Of note, Russia has a strong disagreement with the United States about the extent of Irans nuclear program, interprets the U.S. strategy as unilateral, is concerned over the degradation of their second strike capability, and is concerned with the U.S. and NATO eastward encroachment into their sphere of influence. Reflecting Russias concerns over the U.S. ballistic missile defense strategy, Russias President announced his State Armament Program 2020 which increases spending on next generation missiles and countermeasures as well as strategic missile troops and aerospace defense forces. Ultimately, this counter response risks triggering regional conflict, crisis instability, and a new arms race. To hand off these outcomes, this paper proposes cooperative actions the U.S. should take to ease Russias threat perception to include declarations of openness, Russian participation in NATO missile defense summits, development of a joint threat assessment, sharing of early warning data, instituting a cooperative command and control for ballistic missile intercepts, and developing a joint NATO-Russia training program.
- Government and Political Science
- Guided Missiles