The irrepressible Ted Postol (from whom I was once privileged to learn a teensy bit about weapons system analysis) is still at it, and has produced a simple diagram explaining why putting medium-range missile interceptors in Poland to defend against Iranian missiles is a bad idea not only
for geopolitical reasons but (as is his specialty) for simple technical ones
. Namely, it's an easily defeatable 'defense', and to make matters worse, it's defeatable by the target (Iran) launching weapons at Poland
(where the interceptors are) because the proposed U.K. based radar has too high a horizon to see them if they take this (lower) trajectory - unless you put complete radar systems and the like at the Poland site, which in turn causes yet more trouble with the proposal (and produces yet more hit-it-first motivation).
Dr. Postol has a knack for taking complex strategic and policy arguments and finding problems with them based on strict physics which cut across party lines. Of course, this tends to make various people very irritated with him an awful lot of the time. On the other hand, it also (in my opinion) means that issues he investigates tend to have more of their fights center around actual fact-based problems, which is (again in my opinion) a plus.
Posted by jbz at May 29, 2006 12:16 AM