Missiles Ahoy! The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming!

The White House has dumped Bush's Incredible Missile program to save the world.

President Obama announced on Thursday that he would scrap former President George W. Bush’s planned missile defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic and instead deploy a reconfigured system aimed more at intercepting short- and medium-range Iranian missiles.

Mr. Obama decided not to deploy a sophisticated radar system in the Czech Republic or 10 ground-based interceptors in Poland, as Mr. Bush had planned. Instead, the new system his administration is developing would deploy smaller SM-3 missiles, at first aboard ships and later on land somewhere in Europe, possibly even in Poland or the Czech Republic.

“President Bush was right that Iran’s ballistic missile program poses a significant threat,” Mr. Obama told reporters at the White House. But he said new assessments of the nature of the Iranian threat required a different system that would use existing technology and different locations. “This new approach will provide capabilities sooner, build on proven systems and offer greater defenses against the threat of missile attack than the 2007 European missile defense program.”The decision amounts to one of the biggest national security reversals by the new administration, one that has caused consternation in Poland and the Czech Republic and pleased at least some officials in Russia, which had adamantly objected to the Bush plan. But Obama administration officials stressed that they are not abandoning missile defense, only redesigning it to meet the more immediate Iranian threat.

I would imagine the White House has negotiated with the Russians for something in return, but the Neocons will scream bloody murder. And as you would expect, the right-wingers are in freakout mode. As far as they're concerned, it's still toe-to-toe nookyular combat with the Rooskies.

Funny thing: When it comes to things like saving the ecnoomy and creating decent health care, we hear about the cost of this and the cost of that, ad nauseam. So why aren't the teabaggers and Republicans up in arms over all this government spending on missiles and whatnot?

Obama seems to be doing it smarter and cheaper. Maybe we should have a pay-go approach to bombs and guns. Maybe the CBO should be seen in prime time giving America estimates on how much we're spending on missile defense, don't you think?

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