Ballistic Missile Proliferation a National Security Focus for the 21st Century
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
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The global proliferation of ballistic missiles and weapons of mass destruction WMD has become one of the most immediate and dangerous threats to U.S. national security. Ballistic missiles were used in four of the last six major wars. Some 190 missiles were fired by Iraqis over a six week period at Iranian cities in 1988, during the War of the Cities. Iraqs firing of Scuds against coalition forces and Israel during the Gulf War provided a vivid reminder of the threat these weapons can present to the world community. During the 1980s, many Third World countries assigned a high priority to the acquisition of ballistic missiles. By 1991, more than 20 of these nations either possessed ballistic missiles or were attempting to obtain them. Today 43 nations possess ballistic missiles. Seventeen of these probably have a nuclear weapon capability, with 20 of them possessing also a chemical or biological capability. This paper seeks to define the military challenge ballistic missiles represent review current U.S. counter-proliferation and nonproliferation initiatives and, finally make recommendations on other potential methods or considerations to reduce ballistic missile proliferation.
- Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare
- Guided Missile Trajectories, Accuracy and Ballistics
- Nuclear Weapons