The United States wants to extend its missile shield into former Soviet satellite states. This missile shield is the type of system that basically drove the Soviet Union out of business. The race to develop the Strategic Defense Initiative is seen by many as the straw that broke the camel’s back, and just about bankrupted the Soviet Union who tried to keep up militarily. Eventually, the SALT II treaty was recognized and adhered to, but never signed by the two countries. With the Soviet collapse, and the NATO encroachment into former Soviet satellites States, another treaty, The Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty, the CFE as it is known, was initially signed in 1990 by the countries of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the former Warsaw Pact. It was adapted in Istanbul in 1999 following the collapse of the Warsaw Pact and the enlargement of NATO, but NATO states have not yet ratified the new pact, arguing that Russia must first withdraw troops from Georgia and Moldova.
Putin said that he would not adhere to the terms of the pact until all the NATO countries adhere to the treaty. Ties have been strained over U.S. plans to extend its missile shield into former Soviet satellite states and the chance that Russia might veto a plan to give supervised independence to Kosovo, where NATO has 17,000 troops based. These are issues that could spell the end to this treaty and signal a new “Cold War” with Russia, largely based on the “missile shield” that the United States wants to put into former Warsaw Pact nations. This is the same SDI that caused the Russians so much consternation a few decades ago.
Why does the United States see fit to introduce this renamed SDI program into Eastern Europe? The U.S. says that it is to protect itself from “rogue states”. If that is the case, than why not put it around the United States? From all the data that I have looked at, this entire program is a huge white elephant. First of all, just about four out of five missiles launched at another missile, even with the incoming missile coordinates known, have failed to hit the target. Many in the military can’t see this program ever getting off the ground, let alone actually being deployed in Eastern Europe. To set off a new “Cold War” with Russia over a system that isn’t even working or completed yet is an unbelievable move for the U.S. to make.