Monday, July 17, 2006

Missile Defense Test

Recently, the THAAD missile defense system succeeded in a test. That's great and all. I'm all for a strong defense. My problem is that some very conservative bloggers have touted the tests dishonestly (or stupidly, it's always hard to tell) as some kind of defense of President Bush.

Instapundit links to Captain's Quarters who asserts:

People also laughed when George Bush claimed this week that our missile defense systems could knock down the Taepodong-2. I think he knew a bit more than the media and critics considered at the time.

Well, actually no, he was wrong and the denials are a matter of record. Just in case he's not clear, he seems to think we've got a fully operational missile defense now:

Naysayers have constantly criticized the effort by pointing out that the system at this stage can't knock down 1,000 ICBMs with 100% accuracy, but this shows that the anti-missile system can take out inbounds on a one-for-one basis, and doesn't require a shotgun approach.

This whole missile defense business has been a total joke for a long time with all the very contrived tests and failures (...see various posts by Robert Park and this by Oliver Willis). While this test does appear to represent true progress, the problem is very hard...take a look at a report by the American Physical Society.

I don't want to get too partisan. This isn't an attack on President Bush, nor those who support his policies. Instead it's an attack on dishonest vitriol meant to forestall intelligent discussion from either the left or the right. I'm sure it happens on the left, but it seems that the most read and influential bloggers who engage in this kind of intellectual dishonesty occupy the right.

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