The Marshall Institute unveils a new website offering information and updates on ballistic missile capabilities and defenses worldwide.
The Importance of Missile Defense to U.S. and Global Security
More Marshall Institute videos are available here.
The scientific and technological questions underlying national missile defense have been a core concern of the Institute since its founding. Over the years, the Marshall Institute has examined the scientific and technical feasibility of missile defense systems as well as provided forums for leading policy makers to educate the scientific community and media about the nature of missile threats facing the United States.
Missile attacks pose a serious and growing threat to the security of the U.S. homeland, our military deployed forces abroad and our friends and allies. Approximately 30 countries have operational ballistic missiles and the size and quality of their arsenals is steadily improving. While the majority of ballistic missiles are of shorter ranges, extending ranges ever farther is a clear goal for avowed U.S. enemies, Iran and North Korea. Russia and China possess large and sophisticated missile arsenals. Additionally, many states are concurrently deploying cruise missiles. Unstable and hostile states and non-state actors exacerbate the threat by proliferating and testing missiles and associated technology.
Layered missile defense- the capability to intercept missiles during all stages of flight- is a necessary component of a comprehensive strategy to meet the missile challenge. The goal of contemporary missile defense should remain similar to the one President Reagan pronounced after initiating the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) in 1983: Render missile strikes futile through deterring attacks or destroy missiles if deterrence fails. Reagan's vision, shared by many others, was motivated by the desire protect and defend the American people. In the absence of a defense, the U.S. is vulnerable to attack, blackmail, and coercion by states and non-state actors with credible missile capabilities and the will to use them.