A strong missile defense system is necessary to keep the United States safe from weapons of countries like North Korea, but President Barack Obama is dropping the ball on this issue, says Alaska GOP Rep. Don Young.
“Now is not the time for the U.S. to let its guard down,” he writes on Politico
. “Yet one look at President Barack Obama’s 2013 budget shows that the administration may be doing just that. The current budget proposal before Congress slashes $810 million from missile defense programs in 2013 and calls for a whopping $3.6 billion in cuts over the next five years.”
Young is particularly worried about cuts to the Ground-based Midcourse Defense. “This system has been designed to take down enemy missiles — like those being developed by North Korea — in outer space long before they get anywhere near U.S. targets.” The reduction would include six Ground-Based Interceptor silos at Fort Greely, which Young represents as Alaska’s only congressman.
“Underfunding missile defense at Fort Greely could prove to be a perilous mistake,” Young writes. “These interceptors provide the first line of defense for the U.S.”
The Obama administration is focusing on a new missile defense — the Standard Missile-3 Block IIB, Young says. “The problem is that that interceptor won’t be ready to protect the U.S. for another decade . . . We need a better solution much sooner — something congressional leaders have called a ‘hedge.’”
Congress must step in to save the day, Young says. “Fiscal responsibility must mean more than just measuring which political party has the bigger budget ax — especially on issues of national defense.”
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