World military update
U.S. Plans THAAD Sale to U.A.E. Worth $7 Billion
The Boston Globe
The Bush administration is set to notify Congress of a pending arms deal with the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.). The United States is planning to sell the U.A.E. a missile defense system known as Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD, for a contract which is expected to reach $7 billion. Once Congress has been officially notified of the projected sale, it has 30 days to prevent it from going through, a power which is rarely exercised. The system, which is still at least a year away from being operational, is being promoted by the U.A.E. as a way in which to defend against an Iranian ballistic missile attack. Of course, that does raise the question of why Iran would attack the U.A.E.; explains Kenneth Katzman of the Congressional Research Service, “The U.A.E. has been concerned for many years about possible retaliation against it for any U.S. or Israeli strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities.” The United States just activated its first THAAD battery in Ft. Bliss, Texas, in May.
Israel and the United States Agree on a New Missile Defense Deal
Aerospace Daily & Defense Report
After intense negotiations between the United States and Israel, the countries have agreed to deploy a powerful U.S. radar system, the Forward Based X-Band Radar-Transportable (FBX-T), also known as the AN/TPY-2 radar, as well as a contingent of U.S troops on Israeli territory. This radar is the same kind that is already deployed in Japan and Alaska as part of the U.S. missile defense system. Additionally, the new radar system will be linked to the Joint Tactical Ground Stations (JTAGS) network, which receives information from U.S. Defense Support Program satellites. According to U.S. and Israeli officials, the AN/TPY-2 combined with the satellite-based alert system will likely double or even triple the rage of the current Israeli missile defense radar, Green Pine, which has a range of 800-900 kilometers. The United States has been reluctant to provide access to these systems due to security classification issues and Israel has been reluctant to allow the permanent stationing of foreign troops on its soil. However, the two countries have agreed to compromise. This radar is very likely to be the radar intended to be part of the U.S. plans for deploying a missile defense system in Europe, in addition to the X-band radar in the Czech Republic. It also is probably the radar mentioned in the amendment sponsored by Senators Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., John Warner, R-Va., David Vitter, R-La., James Inhofe, R-Okla., Mel Martinez, R-Fla., and Carl Levin, D-Mich., where they suggested adding up to $89 million to the Fiscal Year 2009 defense authorization for the deployment of an AN/TPY-2 radar to a “classified location.” This amendment was adopted by voice vote on Sept. 10.