Riki Ellison, Chairman and founder of the Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance (MDAA), www.missiledefenseadvocacy.org,
released a statement today regarding the upcoming arms control treaty
that President Obama and Russian president Medvedev will sign on April 8th.
This arms control treaty will reduce each country's strategic nuclear
weapons. Ellison is one of the top lay experts in the field of missile
defense. His comments follow below:
interpretation of the treaty's language and intent in reference to
linkage of U.S. missile defense will have considerable influence on the
outcome of the Senate and Duma votes; of which 67 out of 100 U.S.
Senators are required to ratify the treaty.
this in mind, both Presidents will look to release unilateral
statements outside of the treaty as well as language in the preamble to
the treaty that will appease their legislators on the linkage or
non-linkage of U.S. missile defense which may not be in the treaty, but
will be regarded as binding by both sides. This diplomatic skill is
necessary to achieve a ratified treaty that would unequivocally link
missile defense forever to this treaty in intent and interpretation.
Russians have concerns that further expansion and development of U.S.
missile defense, including President Obama's Phased Adaptive Approach
(PAA) in Europe, is a threat to
Russian missile forces both tactical and strategic and could
potentially upset the future 'nuclear balance of terror' between the
the Americans, any linkage of missile defense in an attempt to limit
its capability, development and growth is unacceptable; this includes
the PAA as well as existing systems. Any linkage to or limits of
missile defense in the treaty are seen as being contrary to U.S.
national security and its ability to protect the homeland, troops,
force structures overseas and allies from ballistic missiles; as was
laid out and directed by President Obama's Ballistic Missile Defense
Review (BMDR) released February 1st. The
BMDR further documented that the number of ballistic missiles currently
in existence outside of the control of our allies, Russia and China,
is 5,900. Limiting our nation's protection from current and future
ballistic missile threats would put American lives and U.S. national
security at unacceptable risk; especially with the increasing
likelihood of a nuclear Iran and the continuing proliferation of missiles and nuclear technology around the world.
"The American public views Iran, North Korea, emerging terrorist groups and countries that sponsor those groups as the main threat to our national security, not Russia.
The American public and war fighter would not dare give up or limit its
current and future defensive capability against those existent and
emerging threats for a strategic arms control agreement with the
Russians; who are not viewed as a current or future threat to the United States.
such, the U.S. interpretation of non-linkage to missile defense in the
treaty is the direct opposite of the Russians perception."
concluded with: "As the Senate works to understand, interpret and
debate the intent of the new START treaty, it is beyond comprehension
how it can have two diabolically opposing interpretations of missile
defense. The reality of a successfully ratified new treaty outcome will
most likely not happen unless we agree to disagree on the linkage of
missile defense with Russia."