On November 28, 2017, North Korea tested a Hwasong-15 missile. It was reported to have sufficient range to hit targets on the East Coast of the United States, including Washington, DC. Earlier in the year, July 2017, North Korea tested a similar rocket able to hit targets on the West Coast of North America. It was the first successful intercontinental ballistic missile launch.
Based on this reporting, it was no wonder that during the January 13, 2017 Hawaii false missile alert –– the excruciating 38 minutes of not knowing what to do — Hawaiians, and tourists, hugged their children, prayed, and cried in anticipation of a nuclear attack.
What they didn’t do was pull out their Civil Defense Preparedness information cards, or recall a nuke response drill and take an appropriate course of action to minimize massive casualties and/or death from radiation poisoning.
Tourists called the front desks of their hotels to be told that the hotel staff had no idea what to do and had no idea if their hotels had shelters; staff was essentially no help at all.
Currently, the US mainland is defended by the Ground-based Midcourse Defense System (GMD). An unreliable system. The GMD is the United States’ anti-ballistic missile system for intercepting incoming warheads which are loaded into silos in California and Alaska, as well as other locations. The success rate of interception during testing is 83%.
The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2018 was approved by Congress to spend $640 billion for national defense. This week, the first contracts were awarded.
There is no allocation for East Coast missile defense, nor is there funding for Civil Defense Preparedness.
This week, The Missile Defense Agency awarded Raytheon, and Raytheon subsidiaries, $641 million to test radar technology and corresponding sensors for the Ballistic Missile Defense. It also includes sensor modeling and simulation activities for the missile defense system.
The contract is scheduled for five years through 2023, according to the Pentagon.
Engineering and cybersecruity firm PeopleTec has been awarded a $33 million contract by the U.S. Missile Defense Agency for engineering and support of the agency’s international programs. The work will be done in Huntsville, Ala, as well as Fort Belvoir, VA and Tel Aviv (Raytheon Subsidiary).
All completion due by January 2023.
In December 2017, Congress asked for an East Coast missile defense site. Since 2012, Republican members on the House Armed Services Committee have pushed for a third GMD site on the East Coast. An East Coast site with twenty interceptors possibly to include Fort Drum, New York, Camp Ravenna, Ohio, and Fort Custer, Michigan. Republicans and Democrats in all three states have lobbied to host the installation. Bases in Maine and Vermont were also evaluated.
However, both the Pentagon and the Missile Defense Agency have shown little interest for an East Coast battery, claiming it is unnecessary.
Recalling my interview with the former Director of the CIA, Amb. R. James Woolsey (Lisa Benson Radio, KKNT 960 AM), who reported that it is a matter of considerable importance to have the batteries of the West Coast repaired and enhanced, and to have the East Coast protected against potential Russia, Iran and North Korea attack — an East Coast battery system IS necessary.
At this time, there has been no decision made on an East Coast battery of interceptors.
Critical to this discussion are two important factors:
For one, The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced in early January 2018 that public hearings would take place in mid January to (gently) prepare Americans for a nuclear attack. On January 15, it was announced that the “Roadmap to Radiation Preparedness” public health seminars were being cancelled. It was replaced with, “Roadmap to Flu Preparedness.” No rescheduling of “radiation preparedness” has been announced.
Further, regarding the lack of missile interception for the Gulf Coast of the United States:
The threat of “Ship Based Nuclear Threat” as a stealth attack on the Gulf Coast is overlooked, and frankly, hardly ever discussed by Americans.
Everyone expects an attack to via a launch taking place in North Korea.
The strategic advantage of such a horrific concept is that the ship-based systems could stand off from countries on the open ocean seemingly appearing as a cargo ship.
Jerry Gordon, former US Army Intelligence Officer offers his opinion,
United States Missile Defense lacks coverage of critical Gulf Coast vulnerability to container ship launch of nuclear tipped cruise missiles via canal shipping traffic. Further, the Centers of Disease Control (CDC) postponing their briefing of what to do in the case of a nuclear attack reflects an aversion to thinking about the unthinkable. Myopic in the face of North Korean, Russian, Chinese and Iranian long-range nuclear missile threats. In the wake of the failure of the warning system in Honolulu, and possibly on the U.S. mainland, this sudden CDC back off of a previous commitment to prepare Americans for such a possibility is inexplicable and dangerous. It must be rectified quickly.
Given the urgency, and the long completion time for enhancements and testing per these new contracts, Americans should be asking the following questions:
1- How do we protect our families in the event of a nuclear or biological attack?
2- If we have 40 minutes to impact, what is the safest course of action?
3- Will Congressional candidates make missile defense and civil defense a campaign topic?
4- Why is there no anti-radiation medication in US hospitals?
We are in the 11th hour of a nuclear proliferation crisis with adversaries North Korea and Iran. Two countries that are collaborating on their respective, and collective, nuclear ambitions.
If the first role of the government is to protect its citizens, why are we not engaging in community discussions on how best to react during a nuclear missile threat/attack?
Civil Defense Preparedness is another political hot potato. Which political party will take it on during campaign 2018? Our lives are secondary in regard to the current Left vs. Right civil war in America.
The Queen Esther Project will spend the next few months engaging in:
Supporters of The Queen Esther Project will be invited to conference calls with experts, and I will be available for speaking engagements. Social media will be used extensively to promote dialog and educate candidates.
Politics must not deter us from protecting our loved ones.
Israel revamped its entire civil defense system in the aftermath of the Gulf War, creating reinforced safe areas to provide protection against conventional attack, as well as other attacks. Israel has created a “new” HOME FRONT COMMAND, a component of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF). “The Israeli public is one of the most highly protected populations.” said Brig. Gen. Ruth Yaron.
The United States, substantially larger in size and density, would have a huge challenge creating “safe zones.” However, ask any American where their closest civil defense shelter is, and they would be hard pressed to tell you. In addition, most Americans, would have no idea what to do if they survived a blast.
It’s time. It’s time for Public Service Announcements, neighborhood civil defense captains, community discussions, and anti- radiation meds in our hospitals. Making believe we live in a perfect, safe, and sane world is not fulfilling government’s role to protect the American people.
Lisa E. Benson
National Security/Foreign Policy – Educator, Public Speaker
Blogger: “The Times of Israel”
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