Thursday, 2 February 2012

Euro Missile Defence Command to be at Ramstein

AFP is reporting that the NATO base at Ramstein in Germany will host the command for the NATO missile defence. The base also hosts Allied Air Command. Interceptors will be based in Romania and Poland, with sea based ones home-ported in Spain.

At the same time, RIA Novosti has reported that Russia may be prepared to allow joint missile defence exercises with NATO planned for March to go ahead. However, the Russians are still seeking legally binding written guarantees from the US that the Euro BMD system will not have the capability to counter Russian missile launches.

The issue has, as NATO Monitor has often discussed, been a block in talks around the basket of conventional and nuclear arms control discussions between the US and Russia. NATO and the US continue to insist that the European BMD system is a counter to potential threats from Iran, and nothing to do with Russia. The Russians counter that the system may be configured that way at present, but that could change with time.

As we have said before, NATO has to make an assessment. Is it's security enhanced more by reducing possible conventional and nuclear threats from Russia, or by deploying a BMD system of at best dubious reliability against an Iranian threat that doesn't actually exist?

No comments: