BlueHummingbird News - Archive

Archived News Articles: NMD and Foreign Policy

6/12/2001  from AP:               
                        Democrats Criticize Missile Defense
                        By JIM ABRAMS, Associated Press Writer
                        Tuesday June 12 3:25 PM ET
                        WASHINGTON (AP) - Democrats on Capitol Hill condemned as
                        unneeded and unworkable the national missile defense
                        system that President Bush is trying to promote to U.S.
                        allies during his current tour of Europe.
                        While lawmakers often mute their criticisms of a
                        president when he is abroad, Rep. Tom Allen, D-Maine,
                        said Tuesday the issue was too important to ignore,
                        ``particularly when the attention of the country and the
                        attention of the world is focused.''
                        Allen joined six other House Democrats and several
                        anti-missile defense activist groups at a news
                        conference to oppose Bush's proposal as ineffective, too
                        expensive and a threat to national security. ``It's
                        based on the idea of build first, figure it out later,''
                        said Rep. Rush Holt, D-N.J., a physicist. ...

6/12/2001  from AP:
                        Bush Opens First European Trip
                        By ROBERT BURNS, AP Military Writer
                        Updated: Tue, Jun 12 2:24 PM EDT
                        MADRID, Spain (AP) - President Bush opened his first
                        European trip on the defensive Tuesday, arguing his case
                        for a missile defense shield and at odds with allies
                        over global warming and capital punishment.
                        "There's so much more that unites us than divides. I
                        refuse to let any issue isolate America from Europe,"

                        Bush said. ...
                        Bush was still huddling with Spanish Prime Minister Jose
                        Maria Aznar at Aznar's whitewashed ranch house south of
                        Madrid when European Union environment ministers sent
                        word from Brussels, Belgium, rejecting Bush's latest
                        climate-change initiative as short on action and urging
                        Bush to back the Kyoto treaty on global warming.
                        "Abandoning the Kyoto Protocol would mean postponing
                        international action to combat climate change for years
                        - and we are already late. We cannot accept this," said
                        Environment Minister Kjell Larsson of Sweden, which
                        currently holds the EU presidency.
                        At a joint news conference with Aznar, Bush was
                        unyielding. He called the 1997 Kyoto agreement flawed,
                        "unrealistic" and not based on sound science. ...
                        Bush was also pressed to explain his pursuit of a
                        missile defense shield despite opposition among allies
                        who fear he will trigger a new arms race. Sounding as
                        much animated as agitated, Bush ran through his
                        arguments several times.
                        "Our intent is to bring stability into the world," he said. ...

6/13/2001  from AP:
                        Bush: NATO Leaders Warming to Shield
                        By ROBERT BURNS, AP Military Writer
                        Wednesday June 13 6:14 PM ET
                        BRUSSELS, Belgium (AP) - President Bush said Wednesday
                        that nervous NATO leaders were warming to his missile
                        defense plans but suggested the United States would
                        pursue a high-tech shield with or without Europe's
                        blessing.  ... Asked if he would go it alone on missile
                        defense, Bush said, ``I don't think we're going to have
                        to move ... unilaterally. I think people are coming our
                        way. But people know that I'm intent upon doing what I
                        think is the right thing in order to make the world more

6/14/2001  from ABC News:               
                        China, Russia Pursuing New Stealthy Radar
                        By John McWethy
                        Thursday June 14 07:13 PM EDT
                        Russia, China and U.S. and European companies are said
                        to be developing cutting-edge radars that might detect
                        America's expensive stealth aircraft much better than
                        conventional radar - and locate all military planes
                        without itself being detected. ... Conventional radar
                        sends out its own high-frequency signal that a pilot can
                        detect. The new radar simply listens to low-frequency
                        radio waves that are already in the atmosphere in great
                        profusion, from power sources such as transmitters used
                        for television, FM radio and cell phones. ...The
                        breakthrough that is making this possible is the use of
                        new high-speed computers to sort through the clutter of
                        signals, picking out those radio waves that are bouncing
                        off moving objects in the air. ...
                        (I had read a similar story about China developing this
                        about a year ago.)

6/14/2001  from Reuters:
                        China, Russia Join Against U.S. Missile Defense
                        By Jeremy Page
                        Thursday June 14 8:45 AM ET
                        SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Chinese President Jiang Zemin and
                        his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin showed a united
                        front on Thursday against U.S. plans to build a national
                        missile defense (NMD) system. ...The Shanghai Five --
                        China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan --
                        and the group's new member Uzbekistan are expected to
                        join forces against Bush's missile defense plans as he
                        heads into a summit with the European Union. ``President
                        Putin reiterated Russia's principled position on that
                        matter and China stated that it will continue to support
                        Russia in its efforts to maintain the global
                        equilibrium,'' Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhu
                        Bangzao told a news conference. ... On NMD, Ivanov said:
                        ``Our views on this fully coincide with China.'' ...

6/14/2001  from The New York Times:
                        France and Germany Caution Bush on Missile Defense Plan
                        By FRANK BRUNI
                        June 14, 2001
                        BRUSSELS, June 13 - Leaders of the Atlantic alliance
                        clashed today over President Bush's challenge to three
                        decades of conventional wisdom about European security,
                        with the heads of France and Germany contradicting Mr.
                        Bush's declaration that there was a "new receptivity" to
                        his plan for a missile defense shield. ...

6/15/2001  from The New York Times:
                        General Says Missile Shield Needs Money and Prudence
                        By JAMES DAO
                        June 15, 2001
                        WASHINGTON, June 14 - The head of the Pentagon's missile
                        defense program warned Congress today that accelerating
                        development of a missile shield, as President Bush has
                        urged, would be a mistake without meticulous planning
                        and a major infusion of money. ... In testimony before a
                        House subcommittee, the Pentagon official, Lt. Gen.
                        Ronald T. Kadish, ... "If we rush development
                        imprudently, I will guarantee that we will get
                        less-than-satisfactory results," General Kadish told
                        members of the House Subcommittee on Military Research
                        and Development. ...
                        While General Kadish was making his remarks today,
                        President Bush was in Europe trying to persuade the NATO
                        allies of the urgent need to build a ballistic missile
                        defense program as soon as possible to defend against
                        attacks from nations like Iraq, Libya and North Korea. ...

6/19/2001  from The New York Times:
                        News Analysis: Bush's Easygoing Words and Hard Line Actions                                       By FRANK BRUNI
                        June 18, 2001                          
                        " ... It was, in Mr. Bush's stated view, a
                        transcontinental listening tour, the beginning of
                        "consultations" - a word he used time and again - that
                        would embrace all the important issues and carry through
                        the duration of his presidency. And yet he had abandoned
                        the Kyoto accord on global warming - and offered no
                        apologies for it. He was launching into more intensive
                        research for, and development of, a missile defense
                        shield - and demonstrated no equivocation or willingness
                        to turn back in the face of profound reservations from
                        important allies. Over the course of five European
                        countries and five frenetic days, Mr. Bush established
                        an approach to foreign policy much like his approach to
                        domestic affairs: occasionally humble remarks matched by
                        largely unswerving positions, sweet words coupled with
                        hard-line actions. ..."

6/21/2001  from The Washington Post:
                        No Defense for the Missile Shield
                        By Mary McGrory
                        Thursday, June 21, 2001; Page A03

6/21/2001  from Reuters:
                        Russian Adviser Says U.S. Missile Plan Flawed
                        By Ron Popeski
                        Thursday June 21 12:56 PM ET
                        MOSCOW (Reuters) - A top adviser to Russian President
                        Vladimir Putin said in an interview published on
                        Thursday that U.S. missile defense plans left many
                        questions unanswered and were flawed in their technical
                        Igor Sergeyev's comments in the daily Izvestia drove
                        home similar doubts expressed by Putin himself earlier
                        this week.
                        Uncertainty over U.S. strategy was heightened by
                        Secretary of State Colin Powell's comments that the Cold
                        War premise of ''mutual assured destruction,'' declared
                        outmoded by President Bush, was still valid.
                        Sergeyev, presidential adviser on strategic issues, told
                        Izvestia in Washington that he had difficulty
                        understanding how the Bush administration intended to
                        build a ``limited'' shield capable of parrying advanced
                        missiles from ``rogue'' states.
                        ``We now have more questions before us than answers.
                        Much of the talk about missile defenses is void of
                        substance,'' Sergeyev said after attending a conference
                        on nuclear non-proliferation.
                        ``I cannot understand how America will build a missile
                        defense system able to counter powerful outside threats
                        while remaining limited. This is like saying a woman is
                        half pregnant. In what way will the system be limited --
                        in its effectiveness?'' ...
                        ``It seems to me that at this stage we should remove
                        politicians and military people from the negotiating
                        table and replace them with technology and engineering
                        specialists,'' said Sergeyev, who also met leading
                        Congressmen in Washington.
                        ``They speak the same language and would be better than
                        politicians at creating a more or less objective
                        picture.'' ...

6/22/2001  from Reuters:               
                        Japan Defense Trip May Cement Views on U.S. Missiles
                        By Teruaki Ueno
                        Wednesday June 20 3:47 AM ET                          
                        TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan's defense minister, Gen
                        Nakatani, will meet top U.S. military officials in
                        Washington this week in a move analysts say could pave
                        the way for Tokyo to endorse controversial U.S. missile
                        defense plans. Nakatani holds preparatory talks with
                        Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in Washington on
                        Friday ...Nakatani indicated that no key decisions would
                        emerge during his three-day trip, but did not rule out
                        Japan eventually joining America's ambitious missile
                        defense project. ``We will make a comprehensive decision
                        after I visit the United States and exchange views,'' he
                        told reporters on Tuesday. ...
                        ``It is most likely that Japan will take part in the
                        missile defense initiative,'' said defense analyst Haruo
                        Fujii. To do so, however, Japan needs to change the
                        U.S.-drafted 1947 pacifist constitution that forbids
                        acts of ``collective self-defense,'' analysts and
                        officials said. ...

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