Scare Tactics Don’t Work on Nukes

The U.S. nuclear missile program won't protect us from modern-day threats.

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In “Keeping the Bear at Bay,” Peter Roff uses decades old scare tactics in support of missile defense – a program many call “unreliable” but I call a “failure.”

The Patriot and Iron Dome systems are many times less complex than a missile defense system designed to protect the U.S. and our allies from a nuclear ICBM. That system has repeatedly failed, even the most scripted tests, and has little possibility of working under real life conditions.

Pro-defense rhetoric has turned missile defense from a good idea with engineering difficulties to a deployed burden on American taxpayers. If America is concerned about nuclear security, we should focus on preventing nuclear materials trafficking and securing dangerous stockpiles.

Today, the greatest nuclear danger isn’t from another country but rather a rogue group with a suitcase that evaded detection because we slashed nonproliferation funds to support “big ticket” projects.

John Isaacs
The author is the executive director of the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation.