Kim Jong Un moves force boost in US missile defense

Excerpts of an opinion piece by Rich Lowry, the editor of National Review:

Kim Jong Un has done the near-impossible. He has forced the Obama administration to admit that the United States needs more missile defense.

Opposition to missile defense constitutes one of the most treasured books of the Democratic arms-control gospel. Since it was introduced by Ronald Reagan in the 1980s, Democrats have reflexively denounced the idea of a defense against incoming ballistic missiles as wholly unworkable, impossibly expensive, and dangerously destabilizing.

Upon taking office, the Obama administration promptly nixed additional interceptors planned for deployment on the West Coast against the budding North Korean missile threat. George W. Bush had already put 30 interceptors at two sites on the West Coast, a symptom of his “Cold War mindset” that the supple and sophisticated Obama administration had no use for.

Rather than simply trust that a lunatic North Korean regime running its country like a vast prison camp will rationally calculate its self-interest as we would hope, the Obama administration says it is going to add back the 14 canceled interceptors. This will take the number of West Coast interceptors from 30 to 44, though with unnecessary expense and delay. The new interceptors should be online in 2017, or by the end of the president’s second term.

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