Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel, is expected to announce changes in west coast missile deployment at 3 p.m. EDT today. The movement of at least 14 ground based missile interceptors is expected. Part of the move would involve reopening a missile field at Fort Greely, Alaska, and some of the interceptors would be based in California.
It will take as much as two years to implement the complete system change.
These actions will be taken because of recent threats by North Korea that they will make a pre-emptive nuclear attack on the United States. North Korea has also annulled the armistice with South Korea, and was nullifying the joint declaration on the de-nuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
This was all done in response to additional sanctions by the United Nations Security Council, at the request of the United States.
One of North Korea’s top generals claim they have intercontinental ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads available to strike the United States mainland.
President Obama said that the United States has the ability to defend against any such attack, but doubts they have the capability.
“They probably can’t but we don’t like margin of error,” Obama said.
In 2011, the Pentagon mothballed Missile Field 1 in Alaska, acting on direction from the Obama administration. Instead of permanently decommissioning it, the Defense Missile Agency placed it in a non-operational state.
Pentagon officials testified at a budget hearing at the time that hardening and reactivating the six silos in Missile Field 1 would take two years and cost approximately $200 million. Pentagon officials testified then that “there are no current threats dictating the need, nor plans to reactivate MF-1 in the future.”
Republicans claim they argued against the move.
“North Korea was doing all sorts of things we couldn’t talk about publicly back then,” said one GOP congressional official who is privy to intelligence briefings. “The intelligence did not change. This is right where we expected North Korea to be. It takes about two years to order and take delivery of a new interceptor. That’s why you have to be ahead of the threat.”
In President Obama’s State of the Union speech, he promised that we would “stand by our allies, strengthen our own missile defense and lead the world in taking firm action in response to these threats.”
Columnist-The Guardian Express