Defense For a Real Threat By Trey Obering and Eric Edelman Monday, July 6, 2009
So could the European site actually defend against the Iranian threat? Critics of the program's likely effectiveness frequently use flawed analytical techniques. The radar the U.S. government has proposed deploying in the Czech Republic has been operated in flight tests in the South Pacific for more than eight years. Critics significantly underestimate its performance, even before its planned deployment upgrades are performed. Nor do detractors understand the basic capabilities of that radar or of the planned forward-deployed radar in acquiring, tracking and discriminating targets. We are taking a multilayer, integrated approach to target discrimination, not just relying on a single element in the chain.
Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Trey Obering was director of the Missile Defense Agency from July 2004 to November 2008. Eric Edelman, a distinguished fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Analysis, was undersecretary of defense for policy from August 2005 to January 2009.