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Why is no one clamoring to build more ABMs? (1 Viewer)

Dayton3

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Ever since the Russians invaded Ukraine we've had people talking about the possibility of the U.S.(and NATO) getting involved in a shooting war with the Russians and how that would inevitably lead to a strategic nuclear exchange.

If people really believe that then why aren't they clamoring for the U.S. to deploy thousands of more ABMs? I know most ABMs do not successfully intercept their targets but then again most missiles fired at airborne targets don't hit them. Still even at current interception rates if you launch 10 ABMs at an incoming missile the odds are you will stop it.

So why is no one mentioning ABMs?
 
Ever since the Russians invaded Ukraine we've had people talking about the possibility of the U.S.(and NATO) getting involved in a shooting war with the Russians and how that would inevitably lead to a strategic nuclear exchange.

If people really believe that then why aren't they clamoring for the U.S. to deploy thousands of more ABMs? I know most ABMs do not successfully intercept their targets but then again most missiles fired at airborne targets don't hit them. Still even at current interception rates if you launch 10 ABMs at an incoming missile the odds are you will stop it.

So why is no one mentioning ABMs?

Because they're pretty much futile except in a rogue missile situation. A full-scale attack would easily overwhelm any ABM system we could deploy.
 
We need an ANW system: Abolish nuclear weapons.
 
Because they're pretty much futile except in a rogue missile situation. A full-scale attack would easily overwhelm any ABM system we could deploy.
You are suggesting we couldn't build and deploy several thousand ABMs that would stop virtually all of a thousand ICBM attack?
 
You are suggesting we couldn't build and deploy several thousand ABMs that would stop virtually all of a thousand ICBM attack?

Not cost-effectively, no. ABMs - and the infrastructure that is required to support and operate them - are a lot more expensive than ICBMs. We could deploy as many ABMs as you want to buy.... but any adversary could match that by building however many ICBMs it would take to overwhelm them.
 
Not cost-effectively, no. ABMs - and the infrastructure that is required to support and operate them - are a lot more expensive than ICBMs. We could deploy as many ABMs as you want to buy.... but any adversary could match that by building however many ICBMs it would take to overwhelm them.
You assume Russian resources are unlimited. They aren't.
 
Ever since the Russians invaded Ukraine we've had people talking about the possibility of the U.S.(and NATO) getting involved in a shooting war with the Russians and how that would inevitably lead to a strategic nuclear exchange.

If people really believe that then why aren't they clamoring for the U.S. to deploy thousands of more ABMs? I know most ABMs do not successfully intercept their targets but then again most missiles fired at airborne targets don't hit them. Still even at current interception rates if you launch 10 ABMs at an incoming missile the odds are you will stop it.

So why is no one mentioning ABMs?

Because it would put the Russians in a “use them or lose them” dilemma and incentivize them to launch their nukes before our ABM system comes online.
 
Not cost-effectively, no. ABMs - and the infrastructure that is required to support and operate them - are a lot more expensive than ICBMs. We could deploy as many ABMs as you want to buy.... but any adversary could match that by building however many ICBMs it would take to overwhelm them.

Or they could deploy weapons that ABMs can’t intercept, like FOBS or a Project Pluto type missile.
 
Because it would put the Russians in a “use them or lose them” dilemma and incentivize them to launch their nukes before our ABM system comes online.
So our nuclear arsenal RIGHT NOW deters the Russians from launching nuclear weapons? Right?

But if we started building an ABM force suddenly our nuclear arsenal no longer deters the Russians?

Get real.
 
Or they could deploy weapons that ABMs can’t intercept, like FOBS or a Project Pluto type missile.

I played a lot of Missile Command on the Atari back in the 80's. It taught me everything I needed to know. No matter how good I got, the result was always the same.
 
So our nuclear arsenal RIGHT NOW deters the Russians from launching nuclear weapons? Right?

But if we started building an ABM force suddenly our nuclear arsenal no longer deters the Russians?

Get real.

The Russians would be put into a situation where the US can destroy them but they can't destroy the US. That threatens MAD. It incentivizes them to attack the US before such a system comes online because at least then they also kill America.

If you were in an armed standoff with someone and that person started putting on a suit of body armor that would make them no longer threatened by your bullet, would you just hope they don't kill you after they put it on or would you shoot them and hope you could kill them before they could fire back?
 
The Russians would be put into a situation where the US can destroy them but they can't destroy the US. That threatens MAD. It incentivizes them to attack the US before such a system comes online because at least then they also kill America.

If you were in an armed standoff with someone and that person started putting on a suit of body armor that would make them no longer threatened by your bullet, would you just hope they don't kill you after they put it on or would you shoot them and hope you could kill them before they could fire back?
I would find a way to make peace with them.
 
I would find a way to make peace with them.

If China developed enough nukes to destroy America and an ABM system that invalidated our nuclear deterrent, would you trust them to "make peace" with us?
 
If people really believe that then why aren't they clamoring for the U.S. to deploy thousands of more ABMs? I know most ABMs do not successfully intercept their targets but then again most missiles fired at airborne targets don't hit them. Still even at current interception rates if you launch 10 ABMs at an incoming missile the odds are you will stop it.

Mostly, it all comes down to cost.

Right now, we have 2 real ABM systems that work, and have been fielded. One if the variations of the GBM-GBI system, that is based out of Alaska and California. Those are very accurate, but only cover a relatively small area and have a limited number of missiles they can fire.

The other is the AEGIS SM-3 system. This is a working system, and we only installed that system in Poland and Romania in the form of "Aegis Ashore". That could be rolled out and deployed in the US, in much the same way the earlier NIKE system was deployed in the 1960s. But I can't see anybody wanting to spend the money for that to happen. Each installation would cost in the neighborhood of $3-4 billion, not including the cost to create a training facility and to train all those to operate it.

If we had the political will, we could have a system in operation in only a year or so. But we are still living in a "Post-Cold War" climate, and nobody wants to consider the costs of putting such a system into place. Or the large increase this would mandate for the Army. Figure each installation would requite a Battalion of ADA, that is around 300-500 people per installation. Even putting it only around the 15 most populous sites in the country, that is more than double the entire size of the ADA branch at this time. And figure a cost of around $200 billion plus.
 
Or they could deploy weapons that ABMs can’t intercept, like FOBS or a Project Pluto type missile.

Well, I will discuss each of these.

FOBS (Fractional Orbital Bombardment System) was a 1950's concept, back when ICBMs were still fantasy, and essentially was to emplace nukes in space. And today, they would be even more stupid. Too easy to shoot down the platform, plus the Outer Space Treaty of 1967 states that the US and USSR would not place any weapons of mass destruction into space. So dismiss FOBS altogether. Especially as we already have weapons that can strike systems in that kind of orbit, and have had them for decades.

Project Pluto has the same faults. Essentially a nuclear powered ramjet cruise missile. The concept once again dates to an era before ICBMs were a reality, and were trying to find ways around this in case they took longer to develop than they did, or simply for some reason never worked. So once again, nobody is going to do this as it would be easier to intercept a cruise missile than an ICBM.
 
Well, I will discuss each of these.

FOBS (Fractional Orbital Bombardment System) was a 1950's concept, back when ICBMs were still fantasy, and essentially was to emplace nukes in space. And today, they would be even more stupid. Too easy to shoot down the platform, plus the Outer Space Treaty of 1967 states that the US and USSR would not place any weapons of mass destruction into space. So dismiss FOBS altogether. Especially as we already have weapons that can strike systems in that kind of orbit, and have had them for decades.

Project Pluto has the same faults. Essentially a nuclear powered ramjet cruise missile. The concept once again dates to an era before ICBMs were a reality, and were trying to find ways around this in case they took longer to develop than they did, or simply for some reason never worked. So once again, nobody is going to do this as it would be easier to intercept a cruise missile than an ICBM.

Then we go back to option A: Russia launching ICBM’s before their deterrent is invalidated.
 
The Russians would be put into a situation where the US can destroy them but they can't destroy the US. That threatens MAD.

Not really.

Here is something that likely shocks people. When the ABM treaty was signed in 2972, the US dismantled all of their current ABM systems. However, the Soviets continued to operate and update their own ABM systems. That is because the treaty allowed to maintain 2 sites. One for the capitol, the other for their main ICBM site. The Soviets then later the Russians continued to maintain theirs, and update them regularly. The US on the other hand decommissioned all of their systems nationwide.

So by that logic, the Russians should have been terrified that MAD would have been threatened, as they could have harmed us, but we could not have done major harm to them. But strange, it never worked that way.

I never understood that false logic, that a defensive system would make things more dangerous. It would be like saying giving cops bullet proof vests would make crime worse, as the crooks would need bigger guns to hurt them. Or putting systems like CIWS on ships would make the enemy mount more and bigger weapons on ships. It certainly never worked that way in any other system, why would this be different? I can't think of a single defensive system put in place, where the response was increasing offensive ones.
 
Hasn't Space Force exhumed Raygun's body of work, Star Wars?
 
Then we go back to option A: Russia launching ICBM’s before their deterrent is invalidated.

That is stupid. Russia is not suicidal. Unless you think they are nihilistic idiots, and are willing to see the planet go up in flames for ego.

That makes no logical sense. Please talk to me about logic, and use factual evidence. Not emotion. I dismiss emotion as irrelevant.

Once again, that is as logical as saying that if you give the cops bullet proof vests, the fear is that the criminals will all go out and shoot all the cops before they have them.
 
Not really.

Here is something that likely shocks people. When the ABM treaty was signed in 2972, the US dismantled all of their current ABM systems. However, the Soviets continued to operate and update their own ABM systems. That is because the treaty allowed to maintain 2 sites. One for the capitol, the other for their main ICBM site. The Soviets then later the Russians continued to maintain theirs, and update them regularly. The US on the other hand decommissioned all of their systems nationwide.

So by that logic, the Russians should have been terrified that MAD would have been threatened, as they could have harmed us, but we could not have done major harm to them. But strange, it never worked that way.

I never understood that false logic, that a defensive system would make things more dangerous. It would be like saying giving cops bullet proof vests would make crime worse, as the crooks would need bigger guns to hurt them. Or putting systems like CIWS on ships would make the enemy mount more and bigger weapons on ships. It certainly never worked that way in any other system, why would this be different? I can't think of a single defensive system put in place, where the response was increasing offensive ones.

Ummm... Why aren't you mentioning the critical limits to the ABM Treaty's deployment of interceptors?

Also you seriously think destroying every city and military base in Russia except for their capitol and main ICBM site wouldn't "do major damage to them"?
 
That is stupid. Russia is not suicidal. Unless you think they are nihilistic idiots, and are willing to see the planet go up in flames for ego.

That makes no logical sense. Please talk to me about logic, and use factual evidence. Not emotion. I dismiss emotion as irrelevant.

Once again, that is as logical as saying that if you give the cops bullet proof vests, the fear is that the criminals will all go out and shoot all the cops before they have them.

It would be suicidal for them to assume America wouldn't just nuke them (or otherwise attack them) once we invalidate their deterrent.
 
Ever since the Russians invaded Ukraine we've had people talking about the possibility of the U.S.(and NATO) getting involved in a shooting war with the Russians and how that would inevitably lead to a strategic nuclear exchange.

If people really believe that then why aren't they clamoring for the U.S. to deploy thousands of more ABMs? I know most ABMs do not successfully intercept their targets but then again most missiles fired at airborne targets don't hit them. Still even at current interception rates if you launch 10 ABMs at an incoming missile the odds are you will stop it.

So why is no one mentioning ABMs?
Because if ABMs worked worth a damn, we'd already have installed them, treaty or no treaty.
 
Please, speak logically and know what you are talking about.

That is not what it is at all, not even close.

I wasn't replying to your armchair quarterbacking.

Star Wars is ABS.
 
Mostly, it all comes down to cost.

Right now, we have 2 real ABM systems that work, and have been fielded. One if the variations of the GBM-GBI system, that is based out of Alaska and California. Those are very accurate, but only cover a relatively small area and have a limited number of missiles they can fire.

The other is the AEGIS SM-3 system. This is a working system, and we only installed that system in Poland and Romania in the form of "Aegis Ashore". That could be rolled out and deployed in the US, in much the same way the earlier NIKE system was deployed in the 1960s. But I can't see anybody wanting to spend the money for that to happen. Each installation would cost in the neighborhood of $3-4 billion, not including the cost to create a training facility and to train all those to operate it.

If we had the political will, we could have a system in operation in only a year or so. But we are still living in a "Post-Cold War" climate, and nobody wants to consider the costs of putting such a system into place. Or the large increase this would mandate for the Army. Figure each installation would requite a Battalion of ADA, that is around 300-500 people per installation. Even putting it only around the 15 most populous sites in the country, that is more than double the entire size of the ADA branch at this time. And figure a cost of around $200 billion plus.

SpaceX's current Starlink constellation is authorized for 4,408 satellites, all in orbits at around 550 kilometers.
 

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