Undersecretary of State Ellen Tauscher and Romanian President Traian Basescu announced in Bucharest today that Romania and the Deveselu Air Base near Caracal, 125 miles southwest of Bucharest, will be the site of the first deployed United States Aegis Ashore missile defense system. This system is scheduled to be deployed by 2015 and will play a pivotal role in defending Europe and deterring Middle Eastern countries, such as Iran, from using or threatening to use ballistic missiles against European populations, NATO and U.S. military forward operating bases.
A stellar Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) test last week gave proof of concept for the initial protection of Europe under President Obama’s plan and enhanced the currently deployed U.S. missile defense capabilities across the globe. This success provides strong momentum to ensuring support from Congress and the President to move forward with and adequately fund the initial phases of the Phased Adaptive Approach (PAA). Deficiencies remain in projected funding of the testing, development and deployment of these initial phases.
One of the key elements to capture the momentum from this missile defense game changer is the State of Hawaii and the Department of Defense’s five missile defense assets located there: