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US Fails Missile Intercept Test

Image: US Fails Missile Intercept Test
This photo provided by the Defense Department's Missile Defense Agency, taken Jan. 28, 2016, shows a long-range ground-based interceptor launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. (Defense Department's Missile Defense Agency via AP)

By    |   Thursday, 22 Jun 2017 12:55 PM

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency, working with Japan in a joint test of a "new, developmental" intercept missile, failed to hit a missile fired from Hawaii Wednesday night.

The agency told the Washington Examiner the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Kauai, Hawaii launched a medium-range ballistic missile. This was tracked by the USS John Paul Jones, which then fired the SM-3 Block IIA guided missile at it.

"The missile did not intercept the target," the agency told the Examiner.

The agency told a House subcommittee in early June that although the previous test in February was a success, the intercept system is "not there yet" when it comes to reliability.

"I would not say we are comfortably ahead of the threat, I would say we are addressing the threat that we know today," said agency director Vice Adm. Jim Syring, according to the Examiner. 

"It is incumbent upon us to assume that North Korea today can range the Unites States with an ICBM carrying a nuclear warhead. Everything we are doing plans for that contingency."

In May, the agency conducted a successful intercept test against a mock attack from North Korea.

"The scenario we conducted was actually an exact replica of the scenario that this country would face if North Korea were to fire a ballistic missile against the United States," he said.

Syring added that in the event of an actual attack from North Korea, the U.S. would fire multiple interceptors to improve the odds of hitting and destroying a missile before it reaches the country.

"What message it sends to North Korea, I have no idea, but I know what message it sends to the American people, that we can defend them 24 hours a day, seven days a week," he said.

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The U.S. Missile Defense Agency, working with Japan in a joint test of a "new, developmental" intercept missile, failed to hit a missile fired from Hawaii Wednesday night.
US, missile, intercept, test, fails
295
2017-55-22
Thursday, 22 Jun 2017 12:55 PM
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