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Lifting the shield(s): interrogations around the US missile defense project

La Lettre Sentinel n°45, mars-avril 2007 - 06 avril, 2007
Analyse and essay
Hajnalka Vincze

During the last year of the Clinton administration and the first nine months of the Bush team in power, a broad consensus had taken shape in the expert conferences and semi-official meetings on the two sides of the Atlantic: everyone agreed that the NMD (National Missile Defense) was going to become "the" great topic of controversy of the following months and years.

But then came September 11, 2001 and it upset, if not the situation itself, at least the anticipated chronology. The attention was diverted towards the "Great War on Terror" and the fighting adventures linked to it. Work on missile defense did not stop for as much, far from it, and the issue finally re-appeared at the top of the transatlantic agenda on 22 January, with the official request addressed to Warsaw and Prague by Washington so that they host certain elements of the US system. The debates concerning the (real or supposed) military effectiveness of the programme re-started vehemently. Debates that were, already at the time, completely fallacious. Since for America, the military considerations are, and have always been, secondary, compared to the motivations of a psychological, industrial, and politico-strategic nature.

Full text in French.


défense antimissiles, relations transatlantiques

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