Vladimir Dvorkin, former -commander- _Director of the Research Institute_ of the Soviet Strategic Rocket Forces, is “quoted by Interfax”:http://www.militarynews.ru/ cautioning against the following bad things:
* Shooting down a North Korean space launch
“I subscribe to the view that North Korea may try to launch a delivery vehicle to put a satellite in orbit. It [the launch] will also serve as a test of an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of reaching Alaska.”
“As far as we are aware, Japan intends to take measures which will include the use of Standard-3 sea-based interceptor missiles,” he said, warning that such developments could lead to a “serious conflict situation.” Dvorkin said that American and Japanese counteractions could “cause China concern.”
* Underestimating Iran
Discussing Iran’s missile program Dvorkin said: “It has always been clear to me that Iran’s missile program is underestimated. Iran stopped using outdated missile technologies a long time ago.” In his view, “it is quite clear” that Iran is capable of building a missile reaching all of Europe.
Dvorkin suggested that Iran was close to building a nuclear weapon, Interfax-AVN said. He was quoted as saying that he “saw no reason why Iranian scientists should not be able to do it; perhaps they are short of highly-enriched weapons-grade uranium.”
“If Iran obtains a nuclear weapon it may trigger a snowball effect,” with the number of countries seeking a nuclear weapon going up sharply, a “total collapse” of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and “not just a regional but a global catastrophe,” Dvorkin said.
* Selling advanced air defenses to Iran
Asked to comment on media reports about an alleged deal on the supply of Russian S-300 air defense systems to Iran, Dvorkin said he wasn’t aware of “any such contract” but warned that giving Iran S-300 could cause serious tensions in Moscow’s relations with both Israel and the USA, Interfax-AVN said.
He is also quoted as suggesting that U.S.-Russian strategic arms talks will be complicated by the U.S. warhead upload capability.
* Ted Postol proposes replacing existing missile defenses with “UAV-based boost-phase systems”:http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/12/opinion/12postol.html?_r=1&ref=opinion. As I read it, these systems ideally would be based in Russia.
* Richard Weitz reviews the the “S-300 question”:http://www.worldpoliticsreview.com/article.aspx?id=3425.