Sixteen years ago President Reagan proposed a strategic defense system to protect this country from ballistic missile attacks. Although more than $50 billion dollars has been spent over the years researching this field, no money has been allocated to develop a system . . . until now.
President Clinton plans to pledge about $7 billion over the next six years to build a limited missile defense system. But I must hasten to add that the president isn't expected to decide whether or how to build a system until the summer of 2000 and will leave the final decision to others later.
But it's a start. This is the first time money may actually be spent on the development and deployment of a missile defense system. Part of the reason for the action may be for the president to fend off criticism from the Republicans that he isn't doing enough to defend the nation. But again, for whatever reason, it's a good start.
The system being developed will be a mere shadow of the space-based system first proposed by President Reagan. The Pentagon officially abandoned that concept in 1993. This will be a ground-based system or a sea-based system which could intercept missiles launched by accident by a superpower like Russia or deliberately by a hostile nation like North Korea.
It's about time. Surveys show that Americans want a missile defense technology when they find out that one doesn't exist. It's been my contention that the reason missile defense isn't a major issue in political campaigns is due to the fact that most Americans mistakenly believe we already have a missile defense system. We don't. But now we may eventually get one. If you ask me, it's about time.
I'm Kerby Anderson of Probe Ministries, and that's my opinion.
© 1998 Probe Ministries International