• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Why Putin Fears U.S. Missile Defense

    Because it works.

    Military.com’s Jamie McIntyre reports:

    Skeptics of missile defense should take note of Russia’s paranoia about the U.S. missile defense in Europe.

    There’s a reason for Russia’s unreasonable stand: Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin believes something many in the U.S. scoff at, namely that the anti-??missile system probably works, and Russia has nothing like it.

    President Barack Obama’s desire to reduce the number of nukes is welcome. But he should not sacrifice U.S. missile defense capabilities in order to achieve that goal. Unfortunately, by prioritizing nuclear reductions over missile defense, our President seems to be playing right into Putin’s hands.

    Posted in Security [slideshow_deploy]

    19 Responses to Why Putin Fears U.S. Missile Defense

    1. alexander, sydney, a says:

      The European missile defence has nothing to do with US security. Its sole purpose was to buy eastern European alliegance to the US, with an imaginary defence against potential Russian aggression against them. Not only would it not provide any such defense – Russian aggression will come overland if at all – but the missile shield's existence would hopelessly polarise Russia, by treating them as an enemy of the West. Now, Russia may be a bit hard to handle, but it is an economy inextricably linked with Europe's future via massive trade in energy. Treating Russia like the Cold War is still on is foolish in the extreme, and the sort of strategy best left to die with the previous Administration.

    2. Dustin Whitmire, Tex says:

      The Heritage documentary "33 Minutes" was excellent. I just recently viewed the film and will be hosting a screening this coming weekend.

      What this president is doing with our national security is atrocious. He has already cut funding to our interceptor silos on the western board (our own safety!) to pacify the Russians – and all for nothing but foolishness. The move to cancel the defensive shield housed in Poland and Czeck on the anniversary of the day that Russia invaded Poland is perhaps the most disturbing action this president has taken in the last 11 months.

    3. James Carafano James Carafano says:

      Hey Dustin, thanks for holding a 33 Minutes screening. Missile Defense is more important than ever. Iran looks at events like the Detroit-bound "crotch bomber" and see it as a sign this administration is weak. Incidents likes this, as well as domestic protests in Iran, only prompt the hardliners there to want to move faster.

    4. James Carafano James Carafano says:

      FYI Alexander from Sydney is jsut flat wrong. The third site in Europe was specifically designed to counter an Iranian threat and protect both the US and Europe. The location was dictated by geometry not geopolitics

    5. Jim Przedzienkowski says:

      To me it is a commitment issue. The USA committed to instal the missile system in Europe and should keep the commitment. It's to bad if Russia does not like it. We need to treat our friends better then this.

    6. Larry Huffman, Ohio says:

      Alexander's comments seem to begin with a false premise and go from there. The purpose was not a missile defense shield against Russia — it was far too small for that, but against far more dangerous states, such as Iran. Putin has made plain he wants ALL U.S. anti-missile defenses dropped, not just those in Europe. If you begin with a false premise, you get a false conclusion.

    7. forrest says:

      The European missile defence system is to protect the United States from missiles from Iran. It would only take one of them with a nuclear warhead, detonated in the upper atmosphere, to wipe out the entire US power supply,

      potentially killing millions by starvation.

    8. R. Cox, Canton, GA says:

      I want to hear more about the other cuts Obama cuts in the military. My nephew is career USAF and says it began under Bush and has now accelerated.

    9. Jim Barroll says:

      Iran is testing medium range missiles. Iran is trying to get nukes. Enough said.

    10. Barbara F Delo, Blau says:

      America would be wise to learn from history. A policy of military strength kept the the nuclear threat in check for more than fifty years and helped bring down the Berlin Wall. By contrast,the stategy of accommodation and dialogue chosen by the Clinton administration in 1992-4 to deal with North Korea's early nuclear ambitions did not prove to be effective. North Korea for sure, and most likely other nations as well, used those years to go forward with development of viable nuclear missle programs. As a result we are now dealing with a far more dangerous world. Now is not the time to downsize our military capabilities.

    11. Rich, Philadelphia, says:

      If Putin's not doing anything wrong, and has nothing to hide, he has nothing to worry about. We've put a lot of effort into helping Russia rebound from the disaster of communism. Another "Cold War" is not part of the plan. We need our President to be firm on national and allied security issues.

    12. Normca says:

      Is Iran going to go over land to touch Israel or Alaska too. ? This idiot who is called Commander in Chief is giving up the defenses of the country he took an oath to defend so he, the One, can be liked. And then there's the respect the US needs to get back [supposedly lost by defending us and fulfilling a threat] so he renigs on the defense for Poland. Obama threatened Iran 9/1, 10/1/ 12/1, those dates go by an nothing but another threat – that's earning respect. The anti missile shield is needed [unless you want to disarm [as some do].

    13. Anthony Sandrick says:

      Once again we are failing to see the whole picture. Somewhere hidden between the lines is the truth. Putin is an "Old Schooler" who's main intrest is the former Soviet Union. He does not like the fact that former Soviet controled intrest are now free and aligned to the west. This he concieves as a threat directed at Russia. Lets face facts if we have a weapons system that can neturalize a major assault what options does he have left? Like in Sports behind every great Offence is a dominating and decisive Defence. When we can win a battle before it is fought we can save lives,property and human well being then we can insure a strong and lasting peace.

      Ronald Reagan once said "There are some who have forgotten why we have a military. It's not to promote war; it's to be prepaired for peace." Many on the Liberal side seem to have forgotten that statement and soon we will be back to the days of Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton.

    14. Larry Welch, Idaho says:

      Alexander,Sydney,Australia, (above) attempts to perpetuate dangerously false information about US missile defense capabilities and intensions.

      It is admirable that Heritage maintains an open forum for comments; however,it is essential to identify and address suicidal contentions for what they are. Putin's team are no dummies; the same can not be said for their US counterparts and their disingenuous supporters.

    15. James Carafano James Carafano says:

      would encourage all to read Ariel Cohne's paper on what Putin is up to. It lays it out pretty well

    16. joe,gibsonia says:

      War between Russia and our European allies would be over in days without some kind of missle deterent. Russia's tanks, like before, would overrun our allies defenses. Putin's big worry is the decimation of his armor in such an attack.

    17. Kyle Keithley Dallas says:

      I would be curious to lknow whom precisely is abvising BHO regarding world balance of power issues? He is clearly vapid when it comes to much beyond public speaking in order to spew the company, ( union) line.

    18. john guerrier says:

      I am happy action is been taking to defend our nation and friends oversea from massive missile attack.

    19. Vladimar You have a right to be afraid of

      US Missle defense however there will be no

      Nuclear missles fired at Russia Us is just

      As afraid No one wants to have a nucear war

      Especially with me back in Power I am not only

      Getting my Throne back in Russia but I am getting

      Back my power in US my family built The White

      If the US wants to play more nasty and greedier

      As for Russia than they have been The President

      Will due his term as President in a Hotel If you

      Both would quit being childish and face reality

      By inviting me back instead of having to go through

      World Court we can start dealing with the real world

      Peace.Her Imperial Highness Margaret

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.