Archive for the ‘Patriot’ Category

SKorea receives first Patriot missiles

November 28, 2008

The South Korean air force said Friday it had taken delivery of a first shipment of US-made Patriot missiles, designed to protect against any attack by North Korea.

They were bought second-hand from Germany and will replace the current ageing Nike air defence missiles, the air force said in a statement.

A Patriot missile launcher in Seoul. The South Korean air force ... 
A Patriot missile launcher in Seoul. The South Korean air force said Friday it had taken delivery of a first shipment of US-made Patriot missiles, designed to protect against any attack by North Korea(AFP/File/Jung Yeon-Je)

The first shipment arrived in the country in August but has been undergoing a series of performance tests before Seoul officially took delivery.

The air force plans to spend a total of 1.05 trillion won (710 million dollars) to deploy two battalions of Patriot missiles within two years.

The air force did not say how many Patriots it had taken delivery of. South Korea previously announced plans to buy a total of 48 second-hand PAC-2 Patriots.

The announcement came amid worsening ties between the two Koreas. In protest at what it calls Seoul’s confrontational policy, North Korea has announced strict curbs on cross-border movements from December 1.

The US and its allies regard the North’s missile development as a major threat to regional security, on top of its nuclear ambitions.


Read the rest:


Poland to get U.S. Patriot missiles in 2009

November 19, 2008

U.S. Patriot missiles will be dispatched in Poland in 2009, the country`s defense minister said on Tuesday while on an official visit to Ukraine, RIA Novosti reported.

“Patriot missiles will be in Poland in 2009, at first temporarily, and from 2012, permanently,” Bogdan Klich said.

The United States and Poland signed a formal agreement on the deployment of 10 interceptor missiles on Polish soil on August 20, which followed the signing on July 8 by the U.S. and Czech foreign ministries to station a U.S. radar in the Czech Republic as part of a planned missile defense shield in Central Europe.

Washington had to commit to measures to ensure Poland`s security, including the deployment of the Patriot missiles, before Warsaw would agree to host the interceptor base.

Moscow has consistently expressed its opposition to the U.S. missile shield, saying it threatens its national security. The United States says the shield is designed to thwart missile attacks by what it calls “rogue states,” including Iran.

RIA Novosti

Ten Reasons to vote for McCain

November 3, 2008

10) Mr. McCain is much, much funnier than Barack Obama. But then, almost everyone is.

(9) Mr. McCain is a passionate patriot who has always been, and will always be, guided by what he thinks is best for America. He can trace his ancestry back to an officer on Gen. George Washington’s staff and his family has served the nation nobly in war and peace ever since. Mr. McCain believes in winning wars.

(8) Mr. McCain’s intimate familiarity with military matters also makes him less biddable by the armed services. He was able, when most others (most notably his opponent) were not, to see that a change of strategy in Iraq – not a retreat – was needed. He brings an informed skepticism to military procurement requests as well.

(7) As he told Rick Warren, Mr. McCain believes there is evil in the world and that it must be confronted. While Michelle Obama and many others seem to think our enemies will purr like kittens once we inaugurate a black man with an Islamic middle name, that is dangerous fantasy. When asked for an example of evil, Mr. McCain mentioned al Qaeda putting explosive vests on two mentally impaired girls and blowing them up by remote control in an Iraqi marketplace. Mr. Obama, whose turn of mind is different, cautioned that the problem is sometimes us: “a lot of evil has been perpetrated based on the claim that we were trying to confront evil.”

(6) Mr. McCain may not be a Ph.D. economist, but he understands that raising taxes and adopting protectionist trade policies will deepen and prolong this recession. Nor would he permit Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid to push through the “card check” law – a union-backed measure that would reverse 73 years of labor law in this country by scuttling the secret ballot in union elections. Even George McGovern has denounced this job-killing, freedom-smothering law supported by Mr. Obama. Greater unionization will translate into lost productivity, inflationary pressure, and fewer jobs.

(5) John McCain will try to protect the unborn. Barack Obama is the most radical pro-abortion candidate ever to win a presidential nomination. Mr. Obama has promised to back the Freedom of Choice Act as his first presidential act, which would invalidate all restrictions on abortion at any stage of gestation – and even in cases where babies are born alive after an attempted abortion.

(4) Mr. McCain will employ diplomacy, not worship it. Mr. Obama is deluded about the power of “talks.” In 2007, he proposed, regarding Iran’s nuclear program: “if we are meeting with them, talking to them, and offering them both carrots and sticks, they are more likely to change their behavior.”

(3) John McCain has said his models for good judicial picks are John Roberts and Samuel Alito. Mr. Obama will pick Ralph Nader and Dennis Kucinich (just kidding, but his choices won’t be far off).

Read the rest from Mona Charen:

Missile Defense: Patriot PAC-3 Missile Test Success With Key Ally

October 18, 2008

The Engineer Online

The German Air Force, with support from Lockheed Martin and the US Army, has conducted the second international PAC-3 Missile test at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

 Patriot System 2.jpg

 Above: Patriot system of the German Luftwaffe

The test marked the first time a German Patriot launcher with Configuration-3 upgrades had fired a Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3) Missile. Upgrades include the PAC-3 Missile Segment launcher, the Fire Solution Computer and the Enhanced Launcher Electronics System (ELES).

The Patriot air defence system is a long-range, high to medium altitude missile system and Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor on the PAC-3 Missile Segment upgrade. The PAC-3 Missile will increase the Patriot’s firepower from an output of four to 16.

Lieutenant colonel Anthony Brown, PAC-3 product manager, said: ‘The successful flight test marks another significant milestone for both the Program Executive Office, Missiles and Space and our allies. We continue to build on the legacy of this superb weapon system as a key element for the free world’s defence.’

Tokyo missile defense now complete

March 30, 2008
By MARI YAMAGUCHI, Associated Press Writer

TOKYO – Japan installed the final piece of a missile defense system for Tokyo on Saturday, a day after North Korea test-fired a barrage of missiles.

A Japanese soldier stands guard as the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 ...
Japanese soldier stands guard as the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) surface-to-air interceptors arrive at the Iruma airforce base in suburban Toyo. Japan completed deploying a ballistic missile defence system in the Tokyo area, a day after North Korea reportedly fired short-range missiles off its west coast, news reports said.(AFP/JIJI PRESS)

Air Self-Defense Forces personnel set up a land-based Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missile intercepter system at the Kasumigaura base in Ibaraki prefecture (state), just northeast of Tokyo, regional defense official Keisuke Tanaka said.

It is the last of four PAC-3 sets deployed around Tokyo to protect the capital region, Tanaka said. The system at the Kasumigaura base, 47 miles northeast of Tokyo, includes five launchers, a special vehicle equipped with radar and another that serves as a control station, he said.

PAC-3 systems were previously installed at three other bases near Tokyo, including Japan’s largest naval base in Yokosuka, the homeport of the U.S. Seventh Fleet.

Read the rest:

Japan Ground Self-Defense Force personnel stand at attention ...
Japan Ground Self-Defense Force personnel stand at attention during the Central Readiness Force 1st Helicopter Unit formation ceremony in Kisarazu, east of Tokyo, Japan, Saturday, March 29, 2008.(AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye)

NATO’s Superbowl Loss?

March 5, 2008

by James Zumwalt
Human Events
March 5, 2008

The 2007-2008 NFL season witnessed the march of one of the greatest teams in professional football history fall 35 seconds short of perfection. Despite its loss in Superbowl XLII, the New England Patriots demonstrated tremendous success in fielding a team each week with single unity of purpose — to win.

Each team member had equal responsibility to achieve this goal, knowing the rest of the team relied upon him to execute his assignment with maximum intensity and effort.

Imagine, however, if some team members, at the outset of the season, placed limitations on what they were willing to do on the field? What, for example, would have been the result had a defender informed the coach he would only defend against the pass for 20 yards out but not beyond that? Or, worse, if a fully capable player, fearing injury, opted to sit on the bench the entire season, unwilling to share the risks, leaving his fellow teammates to take hits for him.

No coach would ever field such a team, knowing that doing so would spell disaster.

Ironically, on a much more important field — a battlefield in the war on terror — this is exactly what is happening.

In 2003, Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai asked NATO to help stabilize his country and provide security against the threat of the Taliban insurgency. Under a UN mandate, NATO took action, becoming the first ground mission in the six decade history of the alliance. French and German forces were sent to the north of Afghanistan; Italian and Spanish forces west; and US, British, Dutch and Canadian troops south — where most of the fighting takes place.

NATO’s mission in Afghanistan was an enormous evolution for the alliance. It represented the first time the Alliance was taking action against a threat outside the European theater.

This was an important step because the member nations, recognizing that the threats to their mutual security posed by terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction were global, necessitating more than purely local action.

The future of NATO as a credible force, with single-minded unity of purpose, turned on its performance in Afghanistan.

And it has failed.

Despite the strategic importance of NATO’s success in Afghanistan, it quickly became apparent not all team members came to win. Promised manpower levels were not provided. Some team members placed operational restrictions on their forces. They were not allowed to operate at night.

Others were barred from operating in those areas where the threat was greatest and, thus, help needed the most. Some even put limitations on the distance forces could patrol outside their bases. It was clear not all team members had the same unity of purpose in mind, content to leave other team members to take the hits for them.

Instead of fielding the 18-1 Patriots, NATO fielded the 1-15 Miami Dolphins. President Bush and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates have been pressing our NATO allies to do more in this very important fight.

Trying to at least get those nations imposing limitations on the use of their forces, Gates has pointed out, “Brothers in arms achieve victory only when all march in step toward the sound of the guns.” He repeatedly encouraged NATO team members to make their restrictions as benign as possible.

But their continued failure to do so is making the military commander’s mission in Afghanistan a nightmare as leaders need constantly consider what assets can be used at what times and in what locations. Missions are impeded as commanders fail to have unlimited access to all resources in-country. This is no way to fight a war you intend to win.

Leaving a disproportionate share of the risk and responsibility for fighting the Taliban and stabilizing Afghanistan to only a few members of the NATO team is a recipe for disaster. It undermines the team concept of all for one and one for all. It undermines support for the mission by a public who senses less than a full commitment to maximizing the application of military force. Why show up for the game if you’re not going to give your all towards achieving victory? Such a lack of risk balance has prompted Canada, which has suffered the
highest casualty rate of any country, to threaten a withdrawal of its forces next year if other member states fail to contribute more to combat operations.

President Bush has made clear, “Afghanistan is NATO’s most important military operation. By standing together…we will protect our people, defend our freedom and send a clear message to the extremists — the forces of freedom and decency will prevail.”

Afghanistan is NATO’s Superbowl. But while NATO leaders pledge to stay the course there, they are doing little to demonstrate a winning commitment. It was recently revealed that Prince Henry — third in line to the British throne — secretly spent more than two months as a combat soldier in Afghanistan before his presence was revealed by the media.

The bad news is the media placed greater value on reporting this story than on limiting risk to human life; the good news is Henry’s front line deployment demonstrated the Brits’ unity of purpose and commitment to the principle all team members are equal and should share equal risks. If only we could get all our NATO team members to accept this standard.

Short of that, NATO’s quest to win its Superbowl may well go the way of that of the New England Patriots.

James Zumwalt is a retired Marine who served in the Vietnam and Gulf wars. He has written opinion pieces on foreign policy, defense and security issues for dozens of newspapers. He is president of his own security consulting company.

South Korea Chooses Raytheon’s Patriot for Air and Missile Defense Capability Upgrade

March 3, 2008

TEWKSBURY, Mass., March 3, 2008 /PRNewswire/ — Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) has received an initial contract to provide engineering services related to a U.S. government Foreign Military Sale of the Patriot air and missile defense system to South Korea.Raytheon expects significant follow-on awards to complete the system integration and to provide command and control, communications and maintenance support equipment, as well as the training of Korean operators and maintainers and technical assistance to the deployed systems.

“There is a strong continuing demand, both domestically and internationally, for the combat-proven Patriot system,” said Joseph “Skip” Garrett, deputy of Patriot Programs for Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems.

Read the rest:

Military balance tilting toward China

January 25, 2008

By Toshinao Ishii
Yomiuri Shimbun
January 25, 2008

The military balance between China and Taiwan is turning in China’s favor due to its huge defense spending that showed double-digit growth for the nine consecutive years from 1989.

Taiwan is said to have superiority over China in maritime and air force strength. But China has built up its naval force remarkably in recent years.

According to the defense white paper for 2007, China possesses 70 frigates and destroyers as against 30 held by Taiwan. China overwhelms Taiwan in the possession of submarines 60 to four. China’s marine research vessels and submarines are stepping up their activities in the waters off eastern Taiwan.

China’s air force also has been active in the airspace above the Taiwan Strait.

“Chinese warplanes have been flying into the airspace over the Taiwan Strait frequently and their flight technique has improved,” a high-ranking Taiwan Air Force officer said.

Taiwan has deployed F-16 and Mirage aircraft as its mainstay fighter jets. China, on the other hand, announced last January a plan to deploy self-developed J-10 fighter jets, which are said to have capabilities matching those of F-16s.

China has deployed 1,328 ballistic missiles targeted at Taiwan, about seven times more than in 2000, when the administration of President Chen Sui-ban was inaugurated in Taiwan. Taiwan, on the other hand, has deployed only three sets of Patriot surface-to-air guided missiles (PAC-2) in the surburbs of Taipei and elsewhere. China successfully conducted an anti-satellite test last year, destroying a satellite with a missile .

As a counterbalance to China’s military arsenal, Taiwan’s military wants to possess PAC-3 missiles, P-3C antisubmarine patrol planes and diesel-powered submarines, which the U.S. administration of President George W. Bush decided to sell to Taiwan in 2001.

But the deals did not make any progress because deliberations on budgetary appropriations made little headway in Taiwan’s parliament due to dissent by opposition parties. Appropriations for the purchase of P-3Cs and submarine research costs were approved by the parliament in June. Taipei has sought to purchase 66 modified F-16s, but Washington has not complied with the request as it has grown increasingly distrustful of the Chen administration.

As a deterrent to China, Taiwan has secretly developed a Hsiung Feng [Brave Wind] 2-E cruise missile with a range that covers Shanghai and Hong Kong. But Taipei has refrained from disclosing its deployment “probably due to the pressure from Washington, which does not want to provoke Beijing because it is an offensive-type weapon,” an expert on military affairs said.

A crisis occurred in the Taiwan Strait just before the 1996 presidential election in Taiwan, when China test-fired missiles in waters near Taiwan and the United States responded by swiftly dispatching two aircraft carriers to the Taiwan Strait.

With Taiwan’s presidential election set for March, however, China has not shown any sign of military threats against Taiwan in recent months. This is because Beijing learned a lesson from the previous experience that such a provocation will draw criticism from voters in Taiwan and backfire in the election.

Taiwan’s former Defense Vice Minister Lin Chong-pin ruled out the possibility of a crisis in the Taiwan Strait, saying, “Military tension will not heighten as Beijing and Washington have close contacts.”

SecDef Gates sees division in Chinese actions

December 22, 2007

By Bill Gertz
The Washington Times
December 22, 2007

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said yesterday that recent military incidents involving the U.S. and China indicate troubling signs of division between Beijing’s military and the nation’s communist political leaders.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates, left, accompanied by Joint Chiefs ...

Defense Secretary Robert Gates, left, accompanied by Joint Chiefs Vice Chairman Gen. James Cartwright, takes part in a news conference at the Pentagon, Friday, Dec. 21, 2007. (AP Photo/Heesoon Yim)

China’s refusal to permit U.S. Navy ship visits to Hong Kong last month and a provocative anti-satellite weapon test in January are prompting U.S. intelligence agencies to worry that the Chinese military is not under the control of the civilian government in Beijing, according to other defense officials.

Mr. Gates voiced similar concerns yesterday when asked by a reporter whether China had explained why it barred the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk and accompanying warships from making a Thanksgiving Day port call in Hong Kong.

“What has been interesting to me this year is that I think we have had two situations in which there appears to have been a disconnect within the Chinese government,” Mr. Gates said.

After the Chinese military’s successful January test of a missile against a weather-satellite target, China’s Foreign Ministry “didn’t seem to understand or know what had happened” and indicated “confusion” over the test, he said.

“We seem to have had a little bit of the same thing with the Kitty Hawk, where the military may have made a decision that was not communicated to the political side of the government,” Mr. Gates said. “Now, I don’t know that for a fact, but there’s just some hint of that.”

A senior defense official said that Chinese President Hu Jintao was familiar with China’s secret anti-satellite weapon program but may not have known about the Jan. 11 test, which contradicted China’s public position against the development and deployment of space weapons.

A senior U.S. military officer said there also were signs earlier this year that senior Chinese air force generals were not aware of the existence of the anti-satellite weapons program, which is thought to be a top-secret effort directed by the Communist Party’s Central Military Commission. It is led by Mr. Hu as chairman and has two senior Chinese generals as vice chairmen.

Intelligence officials are said to disagree over the analysis of a Chinese leadership split, with pro-China analysts citing a split as explaining hostile Chinese behavior as the result of differences between hawks and doves. A similar analysis during the Cold War sought to explain Soviet behavior, though post-Cold War analysis showed the appearance to be deliberate disinformation.

Still, worries over suspected divisions in China’s leadership are prompting concerns about the control over China’s nuclear arsenal, which is currently expanding in both quantity and quality, defense officials said. China’s military is deploying three new types of advanced, long-range nuclear missiles and a new class of ballistic-missile submarines.

Chinese military leaders so far have not agreed to U.S. government requests for talks on strategic nuclear weapons, despite a promise made by Mr. Hu to President Bush last year to send the commander of China’s nuclear forces to visit the United States and the military’s U.S. Strategic Command. China’s military leaders are said to fear that talks on nuclear forces with the U.S. will lead to disclosures of information that could be used against China in a conflict.

U.S. intelligence agencies know very little about the forces and command-and-control arrangements for China’s nuclear weapons, which are estimated to include about 20 long-range nuclear missiles and several hundred shorter-range, nuclear-capable missiles.

Mr. Gates said that China is continuing its military buildup but that he does not consider China “an enemy.”

“I think there are opportunities for continued cooperation in a number of areas,” he said. “I still think it’s important for us to develop the strategic dialogue with China where we sit down and talk about how we see the threat, how each of us perceives the threat and the purpose behind our modernization programs and so on.”

Richard Fisher, a specialist on the Chinese military, said Mr. Gates’ comments on a possible split among Chinese leader is a cause for concern and should be clarified.

“If such a split is real, then he should also explain if there is a danger of a [military] coup against the party,” said Mr. Fisher, vice president of the International Assessment and Strategy Center. “Such a coup could lead to a PLA-led war against Taiwan for ‘national unity,’ a war that could easily escalate into a nuclear exchange.”

Mr. Fisher said he knows of disturbing reports of tensions between the ruling Communist Party and the military over efforts by Mr. Hu to crack down on corruption in the military.

Marine Corps Gen. James E. Cartwright, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who appeared with Mr. Gates, also said he wants to develop closer lines of communication with the Chinese military to avoid misunderstandings over issues like the Kitty Hawk, the anti-satellite test and Taiwan.

Asked about tensions between China and Taiwan over Taipei’s plan to hold a nationwide vote seeking United Nations membership under the name Taiwan, instead of the formal Republic of China, Mr. Gates said he is not worried “there will be a military reaction.”

Mr. Gates also called “specious” claims in the Chinese and U.S. press that the reason the Kitty Hawk was blocked from Hong Kong was Chinese anger that the defense secretary had not warned Chinese military leaders during his visit to China in October that the Pentagon was set to sell upgraded Patriot missile equipment to Taiwan.

Israel: More Progress on Missile Defense

December 21, 2007

by Leah Krauss
Haifa, Israel (UPI) Dec 20, 2007

The Israel Defense Forces this week announced progress in testing a new Patriot missile launching system in southern Israel. “(The system’s) updated design, developed by the Americans — primarily with the help of lessons learned from the war in Iraq — was installed and successfully tested with one of the Israeli Patriot missiles,” the IDF said in a statement from the spokesman.

“The ballistic threats (to Israel) are only increasing,” Lt. Col. Shabbatai Ben-Bohar — the first commander of the Patriot Battery Unit to try the new launching system — said via the IDF statement. “Our enemies understand that in air-to-air combat we have the upper hand, so they prefer to hide among the civilian population and launch ballistic missiles, knowing (they won’t be caught),” Ben-Bohar continued.

“As such, the new missile system has to address the reality Ben-Bohar describes,” the IDF said in the statement. “The new system represents another step in improving the interception of surface-to-surface missiles; now that it has passed the true test (of successful launches), it is expected to be installed for all Patriot missiles (in Israel).”

“In Tuesday’s experiment, the first of its kind in a very long period of time, a missile was launched at a target simulating an airplane carrying out an attack mission. The improved missile was able to successfully intercept the target,” according to a report on the test from the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz.

“Israel is improving the system’s radar and range as part of the implementation of lessons learned from the 34-day war with Hezbollah in the summer of 2006, during which the radical Lebanese movement fired nearly 4,000 Katyusha rockets at northern Israeli towns and communities,” the newspaper report continued.

This development, and the test itself, were carried out with the cooperation of Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd., one of Israel’s largest defense firms. The company announced in August that the Iron Dome, a short-range, rocket-based missile interception system, would be operational within a year and a half. Later, in October, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak visited the United States to discuss, among other things, missile defense collaboration.

“We are giving high priority to the production of a system involving several projects, which, within a few years, will provide protection for Israel from about 90 percent of all attempts to fire rockets at us, from (Iranian) Shihab missiles to Qassams (from Gaza),” he said at the time. “In the longer range, we will have, for many reasons, to achieve a much higher interception level.”

Israel’s Patriot testing is just the latest development in a longstanding cooperation with the United States on missile defense. The Arrow Weapons System was jointly developed by the two countries and continues to be upgraded. In late July the U.S. House Appropriations Committee approved $26 million in federal funding for the Arrow System Improvement Program, according to the office of Rep. Steve Rothman, D-N.J., a member of the House Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Defense.

At that time, Rothman said of the appropriation, “The Arrow program is one of the most advanced missile defense systems around and has been proven to work in tests against real and surrogate targets in California and Israel.

“It provides essential protection against ballistic missiles for Israel’s civilian population, as well as U.S. troops in the Middle East.

“In light of Iran’s open hostility toward the U.S. and Israel, I consider increasing the effectiveness of the Arrow system to be essential to our defense. This technology, along with diplomacy, can help us avert another deadly and costly war,” Rothman said.