President Trump’s recent claim that U.S. ballistic-missile defenses are effective “97 percent of the time” has provoked much discussion about the capabilities of one U.S. defense system in particular: Ground-Based Midcourse Defense. That system provides the U.S. homeland with protection against a limited number of first-generation intercontinental-ballistic missiles, like the kind we might expect from North Korea in the near term.
The president’s comments were perhaps poorly articulated, but the ensuing reaction to them has also included some questionable assumptions about how to assess the reliability of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense. More troublesome is that it has distracted from the dialogue the country really needs right now, which is how to best improve homeland missile defenses in light of the North Korean threat.
Read the full article at The National Interest.