PSR-LA Opposes Missile Defense Test
Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles is deeply concerned with the U.S. missile-defense system test planned for Sunday, January 31. The test will involve an ICBM missile launch from the Marshall Islands that will be be intercepted from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. We strongly oppose this test.
As a physicians’ organization, our mission is to protect public health from the harmful consequences of nuclear weapons. The United States possesses nearly half of the world’s 23,000 nuclear warheads, has thousands of weapons on hair-trigger alert, and has failed to adopt “no first use” policy. The Obama administration has, however, promised a new direction in U.S. nuclear policy and to lead international efforts toward meaningful nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
Sunday’s launch casts doubt on this commitment and indeed is counter-productive to current negotiations with Russia on a follow-on agreement to the START treaty. Statements by the Missile Defense Agency that the test is designed to intercept an Iranian missile are also suspect and mislead the public as to the threat Iran poses to the United States.
Furthermore, the $120 million cost of the upcoming test is not justified. The U.S. missile defense program remains deeply flawed, and even if it were to become effective, a ground-based interceptor would not protect the U.S. from attack by nuclear weapons carried on cruise missiles, nor from the threat of extremists detonating a nuclear weapon in a U.S. city.
PSR-LA believes the best way to protect the U.S. and other countries from nuclear threats is through international, verifiable treaties to eliminate nuclear weapons and to secure and eliminate all fissile nuclear bomb-making material.
Read more about the test:
Missile-defense test scheduled for VAFB from the Lompoc Record
Test of newest U.S. missile defense technology will simulate attack by Iran from CNN
Vandenberg Witness will hold a demonstration to protest the missile test.
When: Sunday, January 31, 2009, 1 PM
Where: Vandenberg Air Force Base. Located six miles north of Lompoc on Highway One, across the road from Vandenberg Middle school Santa Barbara County CA.
Contact: email@example.com, (831) 206-5043.