USA’s missile defense system a threat to Russia
Medvedev calls missile defense a threat to Russia By Will Englund, Washington Post, March 23 MOSCOW — Three days before his meeting with President Obama at a nuclear security summit in South Korea, the outgoing Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev, reiterated his objections Friday to NATO’s missile defense plan, saying it would undermine nuclear parity and demanding written proof that Russia is not the ultimate target.
The hard-line armaments minister, Dmitry Rogozin, forcefully seconded
Medvedev’s arguments, made at an international security conference.
Rogozin said the NATO system would be aimed at Russia and Russian
missiles and as such is a threat to Russian sovereignty.
Since taking the office in 2000, Vladimir Putin has expanded the
powers of Russia’s presidency, consolidating authority in the Kremlin
and weakening other democratic institutions.
It would, he said, make possible a “blitzkrieg strike” intended to
the United States’ missile defense system is supposedly aimed at Iran,
yet U.S. officials are adamant that Iran won’t be allowed to obtain
the nuclear weapons that would make its missiles dangerous.
“We are holding a very critical part of U.S.-Russian relations hostage
to the Iranian problem,” said Richard Burt, former chief U.S.
negotiator in the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks. “I have to ask
myself: Does that make sense?”
“It has been a major, major tragedy that Russian concern about
American missile defense has had such a corrosive effect on
Russian-American relations,” said William Perry, who was the U.S.
secretary of defense from 1994 to 1997…..
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