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Russia Threatens Pre-emptive, Destructive Force On US Missile Defense 675

Posted by Soulskill
from the can't-we-all-just-get-along dept.
suraj.sun sends this quote from an article at the BBC: "Russia says it is prepared to use 'destructive force pre-emptively' if the U.S. goes ahead with controversial plans for a missile defense system based in Central Europe. The warning came after the Russian defense minister said talks on missile defense were nearing a dead end. Moscow fears that missile interceptors would be a threat to Russia's security. But the U.S. and NATO say they are intended to protect against attacks from Iran or North Korea. 'A decision to use destructive force pre-emptively will be taken if the situation worsens,' chief of the Russian defense staff Gen Nikolai Makarov said. President Barack Obama ... scrapped plans for a network of bases spread across Poland and the Czech Republic with the capacity to intercept long-range missiles. But in 2010, the U.S. signed an agreement with Poland to use an old airstrip at Redzikowo, near the Baltic coast, as a missile defense base."
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Russia Threatens Pre-emptive, Destructive Force On US Missile Defense

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  • Frak (Score:5, Funny)

    by masternerdguy (2468142) on Friday May 04, 2012 @08:52AM (#39888963)
    There goes the planet.
    • Re:Frak (Score:5, Funny)

      by aaaaaaargh! (1150173) on Friday May 04, 2012 @08:59AM (#39889043)

      On the bright side, at least I'll finally be able to make use of that pocket survival kit I got for Christmas and show my Doomsday scenario skills acquired from countless hours in post-apocalyptic video games.

    • Re:Frak (Score:5, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:11AM (#39889169)

      Meh. What do we care, we are in the US!!!!!!

    • Where did this come from, Russia is prepared to actually start world war 3 over a missile defence system? I thought the cold war was over? Its a bit more serious than sabre rattling!

      • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

        by moeinvt (851793) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:18AM (#39889263)

        What do you think the USA would do if Russia began installing a "Missile Defense System" in Cuba and Venezuela?

        • Re:Frak (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Hatta (162192) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:38AM (#39889513) Journal

          Exactly. Because of MAD, missle "defense" is actually an offensive strategy. Effective missile defense makes a first strike possible, where mutually assured destruction does not.

          If you don't intend to commit the first strike, there's no reason to build missile defenses. No one is going to attack us, because we can destroy them easily if they did. The only possible application of missile defense is to enable us to make the first strike, and defend against retaliation.

          • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:43AM (#39889579)

            My understanding is that Russia could trivially overwhelm anything but a completely sky-saturating missile defence, which one defence base isn't. So why the hysterics from the Russians, this isn't useful against anything but rogue states. I'd be more understanding if there were a string of hundreds of them being built.

            • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

              by Waffle Iron (339739) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:02AM (#39889809)

              My understanding is that Russia could trivially overwhelm anything but a completely sky-saturating missile defence.

              That would be *before* we surprise them with a first strike.

              After a first strike, maybe not. That's their concern.

              • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

                by h4rr4r (612664) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:22AM (#39890037)

                I would like to introduce you to my little friends the Delta 3 and Delta 4 ballistic missile submarines. Each one has 16 SLBMs. Your first strike would never get all of those, and they would launch much closer to the USA than any missile defense system we currently have in use.

                • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                  by tftp (111690)

                  Once the camel's nose is in the tent, soon the rest of the camel will follow.

                  If I were to play this game on the US side I would do it step by step. First, reduce the number of warheads and missiles by agreements. Then deploy interceptors near Russia's borders. Then work on whatever assets remain. Submarines can be easily countered by following them and destroying them before you press the big red button. All you need to do is to find them, and there are ways to do so (it's just a technical problem.) If a

              • Re:Frak (Score:5, Interesting)

                by Hartree (191324) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:28AM (#39890119)

                Russia seems to be more concerned that the US would be putting a strategic asset in part of the "near abroad". That implies a certain level of military backing for Poland. Current opinion in some of the more nationalist factions in Russia is that allowing basing of that type (rather than just some ground troops to do training, etc) would limit Russia's ability to project influence in Eastern Europe.

                I'm a bit surprised that Russia did this after Obama indicated he would have more manuevering room to negotiate on it after the election. This puts pressure on him in a way that's not likely to lead to him backing down since he's in a campaign. Maybe they see him as vulnerable in some way.

                • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

                  by SillyHamster (538384) on Friday May 04, 2012 @01:01PM (#39892209)

                  I'm a bit surprised that Russia did this after Obama indicated he would have more manuevering room to negotiate on it after the election. This puts pressure on him in a way that's not likely to lead to him backing down since he's in a campaign. Maybe they see him as vulnerable in some way.

                  Probably because Obama might not be getting re-elected, and he's much more likely to fold to their demands right now than a Republican president a year down the road.

              • by poity (465672)

                Underground silos are built to withstand pretty much everything but a direct ground burst right on the silo cap. In other words, missiles are already protected from first strike. The reason why we can have MAD is exactly because missiles systems are built to survive in order to retaliate.

              • by PickyH3D (680158)

                The US cannot surprise a nation that has nuclear-tipped ICBMs scattered across its massive surface area, along with their nuclear submarines around our coast, with a first strike. They will always have the ability to respond in kind, even if it is just to erase us from the planet, as we would be theoretically doing to them.

                The US missile defense is to protect against rogue generals, and rogue nations. There is no hope, nor expectation that it will protect against an onslaught from Russia.

                • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

                  by postbigbang (761081) on Friday May 04, 2012 @11:48AM (#39891119)

                  Uh, no.

                  This is a chess game played by people with huge egos. The US missile defense system is employed to keep the economy chugging along. We have sufficient firepower to destroy the planet into a wasteland that would last, for practical purposes, forever.

                  What you're seeing is fear. Big testosterone-driven egos. Drama from political drama queens whose military economies are fed by conflict between smaller countries.

                  Missile defense is an oxymoron. We have only a few experimental weapons that are designed to stop ICBMs and multiple warhead devices with unbelievably large price tags. Why? Only a fool would press the big red button. This is about brinksmanship, a boys game. There will be no onslaught from Russia. Yet much smaller allies don't believe that. They're been propagandized from birth about the evils and historical warrior nature of their natural enemies, the guys next door, the apostates, or the heretics-once-our-friends.

            • by jythie (914043)
              That would be correct. My guess is this is just about political posturing, showing disapproval of building military assets so close to their border... and is likely intended more for the russian newspapers then american leaders. Kinda like how our canidates keep talking about a preemptive strike on Iran but on a bigger scale.
          • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

            by stevew (4845) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:47AM (#39889635) Journal

            This is BS of the first order simply because of the number of interceptors that we're talking about. The US can shoot down maybe 90% of incoming warheads on a good day - note INCOMING - not out-going, i.e. launched from near-by neighbor Moscow. Further - there are a limited number of interceptors - where the Russians have hundreds of warhead - we'll likely have less than a couple dozen interceptors at any of these sites. The ability to overwhelm such a system is obvious. The Russians have more than enough throw weight to do so - such a system is really ONLY a deterrent to states that have a hand-full of missiles, i.e. North Korea and Iran.

            The only way this is really a threat to Russia is if they are a paper tiger in the nuclear ball club.

            • Re:Frak (Score:4, Insightful)

              by Hentes (2461350) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:14AM (#39889933)

              It's much easier to shoot down an outgoing missiles before they accelerate to full speed.

            • Re:Frak (Score:4, Insightful)

              by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:58AM (#39890447)

              This IS a threat to Russia, but a geopolitical one, not a military one. US BMD sites bring along about a battalion of US Amry troops stationed with it to defend it. Therefore by putting a BMD site in Poland, we will be stationing troops in Poland. By stationing troops in Poland, we are unofficially implying to Poland that we are giving them defense guarantees against aggressors.

              Russia is in a resurgance period; they have expanded their sphere of influence to dominate almost the entire old Soviet Union. If the US places BMD sites in places like Poland or the Czech Republic, then those countries will think they can act counter to Russian interests, limiting Russia's sphere of influence. The war in 2008 in Georgia is a good example of this; Georgia was a NATO ally, and yet the US did nothing to support them when invaded by the Russians (due to our Middle East wars), not only did that show Georgia who was the biggest kid on the block, it showed every other country in the Caucasus who was too.

              • Re:Frak (Score:5, Interesting)

                by shutdown -p now (807394) on Friday May 04, 2012 @03:02PM (#39894009) Journal

                Georgia was a NATO ally, and yet the US did nothing to support them when invaded by the Russians (due to our Middle East wars)

                U.S. not standing behind Georgia was a perfectly sensible decision. NATO is supposed to be a defensive alliance - it's "a strike against one is a strike against all". But in the 2008 war, it was Georgia that attacked first. If NATO intervened on their behalf, it would set a bad precedent - any NATO member would then be that much more willing to initiate force, knowing that, should they run into problems, their allies will shoulder the burden for them.

          • by RogL (608926)

            If you don't intend to commit the first strike, there's no reason to build missile defenses. No one is going to attack us, because we can destroy them easily if they did. The only possible application of missile defense is to enable us to make the first strike, and defend against retaliation.

            Exactly - that's why there have never been any suicide bombers, and why no one has ever shot at armed police or troops.

            People desperate to take or keep power sometimes do desperate things.

            MAD relies on everyone potentially in charge of nuclear missiles to be rational.

            These 2 things are slightly incompatible. MAD has held up surprisingly well, but as the landscape changes from US-vs-USSR to multiple players, it gets messier.

            • Re:Frak (Score:4, Insightful)

              by ToadProphet (1148333) on Friday May 04, 2012 @11:48AM (#39891117)

              Exactly - that's why there have never been any suicide bombers, and why no one has ever shot at armed police or troops.

              People desperate to take or keep power sometimes do desperate things.

              Those two statements are unrelated. 'People desperate to take or keep power' don't blow themselves up or shoot at police. Nor do they launch suicidal first strikes... unless you can give examples that show otherwise.

              Desperate, powerless and misguided people do those things.

              • Re:Frak (Score:4, Interesting)

                by ScentCone (795499) on Friday May 04, 2012 @01:25PM (#39892575)

                'People desperate to take or keep power' don't blow themselves up or shoot at police. Nor do they launch suicidal first strikes... unless you can give examples that show otherwise.

                Most every suicide attack in the middle east is about getting and keeping power. When the Taliban straps explosives onto a mentally disabled, drugged young woman, covers her back up with her burka, and sends her into a vegetable market or out in front of a police station to slaughter people, it's entirely about power. About influencing it, projecting it, and destabilizing opposing power. When a young man driving a car full of explosives blows himself up in front of a foreign embassy or hotel, it's about getting and keeping power: he wants his particular slice of culture to be dominant over another slice of culture. To the extent that his slice of culture is informed by medieval-minded religious wackadoo-ness, blowing himself up isn't seen as self-destruction, but as participation in the culture, and as a shortcut to glory and reward. He wants power for him and his cultural niche, and blowing himself up is part of that plan. It's completely irrational, but it's hardly rare, at this point.

          • by tinkerton (199273)

            There is another aspect. The current implementation of the missile defense may be insignificant, but it's a way of pulling in the countries around Russia. Later on you can increase the weaponry. Doing things one small step at the time is how you cook the frog in the pan of water.

          • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

            by atriusofbricia (686672) on Friday May 04, 2012 @01:03PM (#39892239) Journal

            Exactly. Because of MAD, missle "defense" is actually an offensive strategy. Effective missile defense makes a first strike possible, where mutually assured destruction does not.

            If you don't intend to commit the first strike, there's no reason to build missile defenses. No one is going to attack us, because we can destroy them easily if they did. The only possible application of missile defense is to enable us to make the first strike, and defend against retaliation.

            Why is this marked Insightful, let alone +5? The system being built is absolutely incapable of any credible defense against a Russian attack. There is a very very far cry from a system able to (probably) shoot down a handful of relatively crude missiles (of the type Iran/NK would likely be able to produce on their own in the short to midterm) and the top of the line Russian missiles, never mind the sheer volume of them. Additionally, this system would do exactly nothing against a strike against North America.

            The way Russia is freaking out publicly you'd think the system was capable of 100% full interception of any Russian launch anywhere in the world. Even if this system were capable of fully neutralizing their land based assets that says nothing for their non-trivial sea launched weapons.

            In short, based on the information available I can't see how this system presents a credible threat to them nor how it could reasonably be used to allow a first strike. That doesn't even address the question of why the hell NATO would want to do a first strike against Russia in the first place.

            None of what I said should be taken to mean I think building this system is a good use of resources. If Iran or NK (or whoever) is going to be able to have the ability to launch such an attack I imagine they would have it far sooner than the 8 years it is going to take to build this silly thing.

        • by invid (163714) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:04AM (#39889821) Homepage
          There would be absolutely no strategic value to a Russian missile defense system in Cuba and Venezuela, not unless the United States wanted to launch a couple primitive SCUD-like missiles at those countries. What the Russians don't want is an American military presence in Central Europe. They want Poland to be in their sphere of influence like in the good old days, and they see this as a move into their territory. They themselves know that a missile defense system will be no threat to their defensive or offensive capabilities.
          • by alaffin (585965) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:16AM (#39889953) Journal

            This. Russia and its antecedents have spent the better part of six hundred years trying to control Poland and her neighbours. Did anyone really think that the collapse of the Soviet Empire would change that?

            • Russia and its antecedents have spent the better part of six hundred years trying to control Poland and her neighbours.

              Your dates are a bit off. Just to remind, the Russian Time of Troubles [wikipedia.org] was just over 400 years ago - and, to remind, part of the reasons why it's called that was because of two puppet kings backed by the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth on the throne.

              The assertion of Russian dominance over Poland didn't really start in its earnest until Peter the Great, and specifically the aftermath of the Great Northern War that established Russia as the new major player in the Baltic region, replacing Sweden which played t

          • by gtall (79522) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:20AM (#39890009)

            I also tend to think that this is really Putin trying to claim to the Russian people that Russia still matters as a military force, i.e., he still wields a big dick. Being an economic force isn't something he knows how to produce and he knows it. All he has to do is show Russia can influence America's strategic behavior to claim he can not only hold his dick, he can wave it as well.

          • by FhnuZoag (875558) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:45AM (#39890303)

            Except that the Russians tried to arrange a deal whereupon Russian observers would be in place on US missile defense bases, to ensure they cannot be used against them. The US refused.

            There's plenty of evidence that the Russians are genuine in their belief that this is a threat to them, and this has been a consistent position of theirs since the Cold War.

            • I don't understand why so many commentators feel that the US is entitled to do whatever it wants in terms of military positioning around the globe but other countries can't protest or take similar actions.

              Remember this diplomacy is a bit more complex than good guys vs bad guys.

        • Re:Frak (Score:5, Informative)

          by guttentag (313541) on Friday May 04, 2012 @10:46AM (#39890329) Journal
          We'd either blockade the receiving country with ships, or send that Charles Xavier guy to go work things out with Magneto (See X-Men: First Class Plot, paragraph 4 [wikipedia.org]).

          But seriously, the Cuban Missile Crisis was Russia's response to the U.S.'s placement of 100 nuclear IRBMs in Italy and Turkey a year earlier that had the ability to take out Moscow (See "Cuban Missile Crisis" Paragraph 1 [wikipedia.org]). The result of the crisis was that the Soviets removed their missile base equipment from Cuba and the U.S. dismantled its missiles in Italy and Turkey. And the leaders of the two countries got a Bat Phone so they could figure this out quicker next time (See "Cuban Missile Crisis" Paragraph 5 [wikipedia.org]).

          So from Russia's perspective, they're looking at this and asking, "Really? Didn't we already go through this 50 years ago?" They don't know what kinds of missiles are going to actually be at a base in Poland. If history were to repeat itself, it seems logical that their response would be to set up a missile base near the U.S... you know, to protect against a missile attack from Iran in case one of the missiles it fires at the U.S. overshoots its target.

          For a while we avoided this problem by telling the public we had this magical ability to shoot down nuclear missiles with lasers from space, but then Chevy Chase and Dan Aykroyd had to show everyone it doesn't really work (See Spies Like Us, Plot, paragraph 4 [wikipedia.org]), so now we have to build more missile bases to make everyone feel safe again. Who knew Chevy Chase would actually end up destroying the world? And to think, his high school guidance counselor said he'd never amount to anything.
        • by cpu6502 (1960974)

          The REAL issue is that Russia asked to be part of the defensive system, in order to protect their citizens living on the western part of their territory, but the U.S. said "No. Go away."

          Why would the U.S. include all the other European countries but not Russia? Clearly there's an agenda here to restart a new cold war, and thereby jumpstart the defensive corporations. War == money for them.

          The president and prime minister are both pretty pissed that they were excluded from participating. They feel that R

      • Re:Frak (Score:5, Insightful)

        by X.25 (255792) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:19AM (#39889273)

        Where did this come from, Russia is prepared to actually start world war 3 over a missile defence system? I thought the cold war was over? Its a bit more serious than sabre rattling!

        Rather, US is prepared to actually start world war 3 over a missile defence system.

        See what I did there?

  • Between all the arrogant saber-rattling over Iran, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia, and China, you would think the U.S. not only thinks it can go it alone on everything, but may just stumble like a blind fool right into a world war.

    • Don't worry about being left out. Everyone will get the chance to be involved!
    • I remember reading an insightful remark, years ago, on CNN.com from some high-ranking DoD official. He said the Cold War was World War 3. He went on to say the fight against Islamic extremism is World War 4, which is more questionable (the scope and scale of the conflict is much less than any other World War).

      So the U.S. has already stumbled into World Wars III and IV, and is now going for WWV! I guess WWII turned out so well for us, our leaders are eager to repeat the experience.

    • by dkleinsc (563838) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:15AM (#39889221) Homepage

      I don't think it's stumbling like a blind fool - these military ventures are very much in line with the plans of some evil bastards [slashdot.org] who think that because the US (with help of some European allies) is capable of completely taking over the world militarily, it has a moral responsibility to do so. Never mind the millions of people that might get killed in the process.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 04, 2012 @08:56AM (#39889005)

    Please let it happen before the end of 2012, otherwise all those Mayan calculations that the world will end in this year will go to waste... :p

  • by Trailer Trash (60756) on Friday May 04, 2012 @08:57AM (#39889021) Homepage

    Not sure what we'd do without it....

  • Weird (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bradley13 (1118935) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:01AM (#39889061) Homepage

    This is weird on so many levels.

    • First, since the collapse of the USSR in the 1990s, isn't the cold war over. Why is Russia still rattling sabres? As far as I can tell, they no longer have the ambition of conquering Europe.
    • Second, even back in cold-war days, the objections to missile defense were bizarre. MAD was exactly that: "mad". Governments agreeing to *not* defend their respective citizens: truly mad.
    • Finally, what the devil is the US doing, putting defenses into Europe? If missile defenses are necessary, Europe is perfectly capable of putting them in all by itself (I say this as a European). Stay home, America, stop spending money you don't have.

    So - what's really going on here?

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by DigiShaman (671371)

      Ego. That's what's going on here. And the powers that be in Russia are willing to risk a complete throwback to the cold war era.

      • Re:Weird (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Dragon Bait (997809) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:33AM (#39889445)

        Ego. That's what's going on here. And the powers that be in Russia are willing to risk a complete throwback to the cold war era.

        I'm not convinced it is necessarily Russia's fault. Every American president since the wall came down (Bush the Elder, Clinton, Bush the Lesser, Obama) has at best ignored Russia and at worse treated them as children to be chided or acted as if the cold war was on going.

        None of the presidents have acted like anything changed since the wall came down; none of them have treated them as equal partners on the world stage; none of them have acted like they are potential friends; none have given them have given any respect -- and by "respect" I mean the common decency of acknowledging that they have a right to an opinion. Hell, that they might be useful allies. The Russian experience and insight with Islamic countries could have proved useful over the last 10 years.

        Treat anyone as poorly as we've treated Russia and eventually they'll get belligerent as well.

        Is it too late to change the relationship? Who knows. Lost opportunities are always easier to spot than emerging ones.

        • by demonbug (309515)

          Ego. That's what's going on here. And the powers that be in Russia are willing to risk a complete throwback to the cold war era.

          I'm not convinced it is necessarily Russia's fault. Every American president since the wall came down (Bush the Elder, Clinton, Bush the Lesser, Obama) has at best ignored Russia and at worse treated them as children to be chided or acted as if the cold war was on going.

          None of the presidents have acted like anything changed since the wall came down; none of them have treated them as equal partners on the world stage; none of them have acted like they are potential friends; none have given them have given any respect -- and by "respect" I mean the common decency of acknowledging that they have a right to an opinion. Hell, that they might be useful allies. The Russian experience and insight with Islamic countries could have proved useful over the last 10 years.

          Treat anyone as poorly as we've treated Russia and eventually they'll get belligerent as well.

          Is it too late to change the relationship? Who knows. Lost opportunities are always easier to spot than emerging ones.

          To be fair, outside of their nuclear arsenal Russia really isn't all that significant - and that's probably the real thing that drives them. Without the Soviet Union, they're hovering around the 10th largest economy in the world (about even with Canada, depending on what source you look at), and the 8th largest by population. They are trying to maintain their inflated political influence through the only means they have - their large military and especially massive nuclear arsenal. Outside of their weapons,

        • by ScentCone (795499)

          None of the presidents have acted like anything changed since the wall came down;

          Right, because very little has. And Putin takes frequent opportunities to try to keep it that way.

          none of them have treated them as equal partners on the world stage;

          True. Because they're not. Not equal in their contributions to peacekeeping efforts. Not equal in efforts to rein in places like North Korea. Not equal in stabilizing trade. Not equal in their handling of organized crime. Etc.

          none of them have acted like they are potential friends;

          Other than constant overtures that are rebuffed at every turn by the same handful of people that are still running Russia.

          none have given them have given any respect -- and by "respect" I mean the common decency of acknowledging that they have a right to an opinion.

          What does that even mean? Do you mean that we don't let them t

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Putin wants to be reelected. He's a bully, so he needs to threaten. Once he's safely in office eating caviar and fucking icelandic whores, he'll be fine.

    • Re:Weird (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Guppy06 (410832) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:16AM (#39889239)

      First, since the collapse of the USSR in the 1990s, isn't the cold war over. Why is Russia still rattling sabres?

      For various reasons that can be and have been debated at length, Russia really feels threatened by the West and doesn't like NATO accepting new members in its former buffer zone of Warsaw Pact countries and Soviet Republics.

      As far as I can tell, they no longer have the ambition of conquering Europe.

      Tank rush to the English Channel? Not so much, no. But whether or not they want to establish/maintain hegemony over Eastern Europe is another matter.

      Second, even back in cold-war days, the objections to missile defense were bizarre. MAD was exactly that: "mad". Governments agreeing to *not* defend their respective citizens: truly mad.

      A perfect defense means you have no reason not to launch an offense. A first strike becomes all reward with no risk.

      The policy is nothing if not rational.

      Finally, what the devil is the US doing, putting defenses into Europe? If missile defenses are necessary, Europe is perfectly capable of putting them in all by itself

      I as an American agree wholeheartedly, but Europe has a longstanding postwar habit of not spending more than €0.17 on defense and relying on the US to cover the rest (witness the Yugoslav Wars).

      In any event, it's technically "NATO" we're talking about here. The balance of influence and responsibility within NATO can be treated as a separate matter.

      • by Uberbah (647458)

        Europe has a longstanding postwar habit of not spending more than â0.17 on defense

        Because they don't need to, with or without American military bases in Europe, and certainly not after the fall of the U.S.S.R. Grotesque military budgets have nothing to do with actual defense needs and everything to do with shoveling cash into the military-industrial complex.

    • by swb (14022)

      The sabre-rattling could be for a number of reasons.

      The first might be internal consumption -- Putin's popularity has been flagging as of late, and there's nothing like a little rally-round-the-flag to shore up support.

      Another might be to try to throw the US off balance while we try to negotiate with the Chinese, where we're already in hot water over the Chen incident in addition to trying to get support on Iran, Syria and various other Sino-American issues. The US and China smiling and agreeing to squeeze

  • by Ihlosi (895663) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:11AM (#39889165)

    They must know more than everyone else.

    • by Alex Belits (437) *

      No, they know Americans believe this thing actually works.

      Remember, MAD only keeps countries from starting a war if they all know about it. If US leaders convince itself they can attack Russia or China safely, eventually US will attack Russia or China. To be honest, I am surprised how religious nuts in Bush administration didn't start a nuclear war -- they believed, God protects the US.

    • by dkleinsc (563838) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:41AM (#39889557) Homepage

      Here's what they know: The US (specifically, that well-known liberal peacenik Richard Nixon) signed a treaty in 1972 specifically saying that nobody was allowed to do anti-ballistic missile defense, specifically so that there would always be a MAD scenario if somebody decided to strike. Then George W Bush basically told the Russians to go to hell and that the US was ignoring the treaty. Then they spent a lot of time and money trying to improve their anti-ballistic missile defense. Now Barack Obama is deploying anti-ballistic missile defense right near Russia's border.

      Another way of thinking about it: Would you be fine with $EVIL_EMPIRE deploying missile defense in Cuba, Mexico, and Canada?

      I get the joke, but the fact that the US is deploying it suggests that they think they have something useful.

  • 1962 in reverse (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MrKaos (858439) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:28AM (#39889389) Journal
    This is kind of like the Cuban Missile Crisis in reverse.
  • by MiniMike (234881) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:48AM (#39889653)

    Are they threatening to shoot missiles at our missile defense? Really? I almost want to see how well that goes for them. How many missiles will they go through before they figure it out?

    Additionally, I am quite surprised, no shocked really, that Russia would have so little respect for the sovereignty of Poland! Given the long history of these two countries relationship and past cooperation I, um, oh yeah, nevermind...

  • by paiute (550198) on Friday May 04, 2012 @09:59AM (#39889775)
    Yeah... North Korea? I'm going to have to go ahead and ask you to fire your missiles so they pass over Poland first, okay? That'd be great....
  • by thereitis (2355426) on Friday May 04, 2012 @11:10AM (#39890617) Journal
    World's most militarized nation (in dollars spent) wants to set up missile shield on their doorstep. I'd be more surprised if Russia _wasn't_ concerned.

    There are lots of potential reasons for their actions on both sides of the equation: Maybe the US really does want to protect against attacks, or maybe they want to continue their march to becoming the world government. Maybe Russia feels it won't be needed anymore by its allies if the Americans are protecting them instead. etc... I've no idea.

  • by KlomDark (6370) on Friday May 04, 2012 @12:05PM (#39891345) Homepage Journal

    Oh cool, we are getting our old, trusted, loved boogieman back! Just in time for the Terrist Mooslim to be retired as the archetype bad guy. The Powers That Be must have realized it was safer working with Russia to keep the citizens in fear. The Taliban approach was cheaper, but was much harder to manage. Russia will cost more, but is more predictable.

    So hopefully we'll start getting some good old school Megadeth songs again! (Although the last one was pretty good...)

  • by boorack (1345877) on Friday May 04, 2012 @01:26PM (#39892595)

    For almost 50 years we lived under threat of instant vaporization. Both NATO and Soviets assumed that opponent army reinforcements will be stopped at Vistula line by tactical nuclear strike. Revealed war plans assumed that two million Poles will die in such strike and most parts of central Poland will become useless, radioactive wasteland for a number of years. Here in Poland we were trained how to survive nearby nuclear strike on a regular basis.

    Things changed in 1990, when Cold War was finally over. Everyone became a friend. Some we liked some more [Americans] than others [Russians] for obvious reasons but it didn't really matter much.

    Now, after 20 years of relative safety some psychotic US leader came here and started messing around with their 'anti-missile' shit. Arms race is back. Let assume that they'll install a system that will intercept 50% of russian missiles. Rational response I would expect from Russian is to have, say, twice as many nuclear tipped missiles they have now. I know this, Russians know this. Psychotic US politicians know this as well. So we have to live once again under threat of (instant) vaporization just because some dysfunctional psychopaths who happen to have too much power in their hands decided to pursue their geopolitical games. Having seen how these games have played out in, say, Middle East I'm really scared. Various "developments" since 2001 made me confident that United States will spark 3-rd world war sooner or later. I was hoping that in all the mess between US, Russia, China and Middle East - Poland will become a kind of place everyone forgot about, so we'll be relatively safe. Now I'm losing that hope - some whilte collar fucks along with our local puppet government placed us back into spotlight.

    My message to US politicians and millitary: get the fuck out of here NOW. Take your anti-ballistic toys with you and shove them deep into your ass. You killed millions of people in the Middle East, destroyed so many countries. We don't want you to pursue the same psychotic games in Poland.

    Regards,

    Citizen od Poland.

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