Navy missile defense works against short range missile
The U.S. military intercepted a ballistic missile Thursday in the first such sea-based test since a Navy cruiser shot down an errant satellite earlier this year.The system is taking on more challenging test each time it appears. The reaction time for the crew is much shorter on missiles like the one shot down. This close range test might also be used against missiles in the launch phase too, which would defeat their ability to set out decoys.
The military fired the target, a Scud-like missile with a range of a few hundred miles, from a decommissioned amphibious assault ship near Hawaii's island of Kauai.
The USS Lake Erie, based at Pearl Harbor, fired two interceptor missiles that shot down the target in its final seconds of flight about 12 miles above the Pacific Ocean.
The target was shot down about 100 miles northwest of Kauai in its final seconds of flight, about five minutes after it was fired.
The test showed Navy ships are capable of shooting down short-range targets in their last phase of flight using modified missiles the service already has, the military said.
The Navy and the Missile Defense Agency have already demonstrated that ships equipped with Aegis ballistic missile defense technology can intercept mid-range targets in midcourse of flight.
This is a very important weapon system that Obama has threatened to kill. McCain would be wise to make an issue of that, since the Democrat position is opposed by most voters.