For Immediate Release
Santa Barbara–The U.S. Missile Defense Agency is planning a test of its Ground-based Mid-Course Interceptor Missile from Vandenberg Air Force Base on May 30, 2016.
The targeted intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) will lift off from Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands. The ground-based interceptor will launch out of an underground silo from Vandenberg between noon and 4:14 P.M. in an attempt to intercept the targeted ICBM.
According to the Missile Defense Agency, “This will be the first time a ground-based missile interceptor launched from California attempts to smash into a ‘threat-representative’ intercontinental ballistic missile in its mid-course over the Pacific.”
The U.S. has already spent at least $41 billion on the Ground Missile Defense System. According to Rick Wayman, Programs Director at the Santa Barbara-based Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, “The Ground Missile Defense System is a boondoggle of the highest order. The U.S. continues to shovel billions of dollars into a system that simply will never work reliably. It’s long past time to stop throwing good money after bad and end this misguided missile system.”
The U.S. Department of Energy recently submitted their 2018 budget request in which they proposed “$10.2 billion for Weapons Activities to maintain and enhance the safety, security, and effectiveness of our nuclear weapons enterprise.” This particular test alone will have a price tag upwards of $244 million.
It should be noted that the test comes on the heels of negotiations on a treaty to ban nuclear weapons in international law. These negotiations took place under the auspices of the United Nations and more than 130 nations participated. A draft treaty has been released and is expected to be finalized by early July.
David Krieger, President of the Foundation, stated, “The U.S. ground-based missile defense system has only a 53 percent success rate in 17 tests. It will not be able to protect Americans or anyone else. It is simply an efficient and cynical way to funnel funds to defense corporations.” He continued, “There is simply no good prospect for this kind of weapons testing, especially with rising tensions on the Korean Peninsula. What is needed is an all-out diplomatic push for true security to achieve a world without nuclear weapons.”
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If you would like to interview David Krieger, President of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation or Rick Wayman, Director of Programs, please call the Foundation at (805) 965-3443.
The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation’s mission is to educate and advocate for peace and a world free of nuclear weapons and to empower peace leaders. Founded in 1982, the Foundation is comprised of individuals and organizations worldwide who realize the imperative for peace in the Nuclear Age. The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation is a non-partisan, non-profit organization with consultative status to the United Nations. For more information, visit wagingpeace.org.