July 11, 2013
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Leading defense Republicans, U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services (SASC) Committee; Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-CA-25), Chairman of the House Armed Services (HASC) Committee; U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R- Ala.), Ranking Member of SASC Subcommittee on Strategic Forces; and Congressman Mike Rogers (R-AL-03), Chairman of HASC Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, today sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel expressing concern over the recent failed test of the ground-based midcourse defense (GMD) system and requested a plan to resolve the cause of the failures.
In the letter, the Members wrote: “It is already clear that President Obama’s decision to drastically cut funding for the GMD program since he came to office and to ‘curtail addition GMD development,’ has drained funding available to conduct needed tests of this system… Regardless of the causes of the recent flight test failures, we encourage you to make the development and deployment of a new kill vehicle one of your highest priorities, especially in light of your recent announcement to deploy an additional 14 ground-based interceptors to Alaska to address the growing threat from North Korea.”
The Members continued: “In closing, we seek your assurance that defending the American people against long-range missile threats remains the top missile defense priority of the United States. Additionally, we ask the Director, Missile Defense Agency provide us, as soon as possible, an action plan to resolve the cause of the failure of the recent missile defense test, conduct a new intercept test of that system, and to provide a clear roadmap for the development and fielding of a next generation kill vehicle for the GMD system that will be required to stay ahead of the long-range ballistic missile threats to the United States.”
You can click here to view the full text of the letter.