Last week’s obsessive recapping of the Unha-2 launch provided an occasion to “ask why Russian officials have such odd perceptions”:http://www.totalwonkerr.net/1971/russia-eyes-north-korea of North Korean missile and nuclear activity, and what that would imply for the actual use of GMD by the United States. Hint: not so good.
Just a few days later, the situation looks, if anything, even worse than at first glance. While there’s every reason to believe that the Russians can see missiles inbound from the United States, there’s not much indication that they can see missiles launched from North Korea.
That means that a multiple GMD launch in the direction of Russia is likely to be the first thing that the Strategic Rocket Forces commander learns about, not the North Korean launch(es) that would have prompted it.
Because I’d like to come to the point while I still have your attention, I’m putting the source material in the comments. Go look there, if you’re not too squeamish.
To: Combatant commanders, present and future
One doesn’t want to judge hastily. So: _if_ these accounts are basically accurate — I stress _if_ — and until such a time as this mess can be cleared up, the actual use of GMD against a North Korean missile launch in the direction of North America would appear to be an act of madness.
Cross-posted to “ACW”:http://www.armscontrolwonk.com/2257/russia-north-korea-worse-than-you-thought. See the “comments at ACW”:http://www.armscontrolwonk.com/2257/russia-north-korea-worse-than-you-thought#comment.