NAPSNET Week in Review: 13 April 2001

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US-PRC Spy Plane Incident


1. Event DetailsThe 24 US crewmembers who were detained in the PRC after their EP-3 spy-plane landed in Hainan arrived in Honolulu on April 12. The first of the debriefings revealed that the US fliers came much close to losing the reconnaissance plane and their lives than had previously been known. One US Defense Department official said the PRC F-8 fighter made two passes near the US plane, coming close to its left wing. The official added, “On the third pass, he came in too fast. He tried to decelerate by bringing up his nose, which would bleed off speed. But when that happened, he lost some fine control, and his tail came up under the No. 1 propeller,” broke in two pieces and fell to the sea. US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Friday that the PRC fighter pilot was at fault in the collision of the US surveillance plane. The US Department of State’s Office of International Information Programs released the following official text of a letter from US Ambassador to the PRC Joseph Prueher to PRC Minister of Foreign Affairs Tang Jiaxuan on April 11, 2001.
“US-PRC Midair Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, US)
“US Reconnaissance Flights” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, US)
“Resolution of US-PRC Spy Plane Incident” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 11, US)
“Letter Regarding Spy Plane Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 11, US)
“Photos of US Spy Plane” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 11, US)
“US-PRC Spy Plane Incident” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)
“US Government Position on Incident” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)
“Public Attitudes toward Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)
“Situation of US Spy Plane Crew” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)
“Effect of Plane Collision on US-PRC Relations” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)
“PRC on Air Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, PRC)
“US-PRC Plane Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)
“Effect of Collision on Sino-US Relations” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)

The Washington Times has learned that the PRC is preparing to conduct a small, underground nuclear test. US intelligence officials said the EP-3E surveillance aircraft that collided with a PRC interceptor jet on April 1 was gathering electronic intelligence related to the impending test, along with other intelligence targets.
“Underground PRC Nuclear Tests” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)


2. US-PRC TalksThe US on Friday named Beijing as the venue for the meeting on April 18 with the PRC to discuss the plane collision. US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage stated, “We intend to press for the release of our aircraft; it’s an 80- million-dollar aircraft. It is ours.” The Wall Street Journal reported that the US is expected to take a tougher approach toward the PRC now that the crewmembers of a downed US surveillance plane have returned. Among the steps being discussed is a reduction or suspension of exchange programs with the PRC military, while social contacts between US and PRC diplomats could be sharply curtailed. PRC foreign ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue said that the PRC had no intention to quickly return the US surveillance aircraft that crashed on Hainan Island. An anonymous senior US defense official said that the top US priority at upcoming talks with the PRC is not to retrieve the spy plane but to persuade the PRC air force to stop its aggressive intercept tactics.
“US-PRC Talks” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, US)
“US Reconnaissance Flights” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, US)
“Status of US Plane” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)


3. Analysis of US-PRC StandoffAnalysts said that the strong economic interests that bind the PRC and the US together should limit long-term damage to relations from the spy plane crisis, despite resistance from hawks in both camps. Guo Xiangang, a researcher at the China Institute of International Studies, a think thank attached to the PRC foreign ministry, said, “I’d expect no catastrophic consequences from the standoff.” The Washington Post published an opinion article by Samuel R. Berger, former national security adviser to US President Bill Clinton, which said that what the US has learned from the spy plane standoff is that the US relationship with the PRC remains volatile and can be knocked off the tracks with one wrong turn. The Wall Street Journal reported that analysts said that US-PRC relations are likely to face tensions in the coming months and the “crucial variable” is whether the moderates on both sides can find new ways to communicate with and strengthen each other, or whether they have been weakened and disillusioned by the incident. US analysts said the collision between the US and PRC planes exposed a fissure in Bush’s administration between hawkish, anti-PRC factions, and the diplomacy-first strategy of moderates and the US State Department.
“Effect of Incident on US-PRC Relations” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, US)
“US-PRC Relations” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)
“Effects of US-PRC Spy Plane Incident” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 11, US)

The New York Times reported that the spy plane incident succeeded in getting the PRC government greater attention from the US President George W. Bush administration. An opinion article by Bates Gill of the Brookings Institution said that the recent US-PRC spy plane incident had lessons on how to deal with the PRC. Gill argued, “Beijing held a lot of cards in this incident, but in the end America held the card that mattered most, namely China’s long-term need for a stable working relationship with the United States.” An opinion article by James Lilley and Arthur Waldron of the American Enterprise Institute said that the spy plane incident could have the effect of removing “dangerous illusions” on both sides regarding the PRC-US relationship.
“US Policy toward PRC” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)
“US Opinions on Spy Plane Incident” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)
“Analysis of US-PRC Standoff” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)
“World Opinion on PRC-US Air-Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, PRC)

The PRC government went all out to convince its people that it had won a moral victory in releasing the crew of the US spy plane after receiving what it billed as a contrite letter from the US. There is a growing anti-American sentiment in the PRC where the US is seen displaying hegemonic behavior that is more similar to being the world’s biggest criminal rather than the world’s policeman. However, there were plenty of skeptical rumblings, especially on university campuses and in Internet chat rooms. Recent reforms to streamline and scale down the PRC military are paying an unexpected dividend to the armed forces: a stronger voice in foreign policy, as evidenced by a pivotal role in the dispute over the downed US reconnaissance plane. The PRC is continuing aerial surveillance targeted at collecting electronic communications from Taiwan, Vietnam and areas of the South China Sea. According to a letter signed by PRC Ambassador to the US Yang Jiechi, received by some US lawmakers, the PRC has advised US members of Congress to separate the PRC bid to hold the 2008 Olympics from the current spy-plane diplomatic row.
“PRC Views of Incident” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, US)
“Popular PRC Sentiments About Standoff” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)
“PRC Government Position on Incident” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)
“PRC Military Role in Spy Plane Standoff” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)
“South China Seas Espionage” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)
“PRC Olympic Bid” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)

The Washington Post carried an analytical article which said that the US-PRC spy plane standoff was mostly a diplomatic one handled by the US State Department when in the past several administrations the most important breakthroughs in diplomacy with the PRC were handled by the president’s national security adviser.
“US Policymaking” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, US)


4. Japanese Reaction to IncidentJapanese Vice Defense Agency Director General Ken Sato stated, in response to reports that the US EP-3 that departed from the Kadena Base in Okinawa, said, “The US forces are acting according to the Japanese-US Security Treaty. The accident will not influence the security relations.”
“Japanese Reaction to US-PRC Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, Japan)

The Daily Yomiuri reported that the midair collision is symbolic of the struggle between the two countries for control over the Pacific.
“Japanese Views on US-PRC Air Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, Japan)


5. Taiwanese Reaction to IncidentThe Global Times reported that in the wake of the PRC-US military planes midair collision, all circles in Taiwan are showing extraordinary concern about this issue, which is mainly reflected in official remarks, media articles and commentary and from scholars as well. Taiwanese officials are concerned that as the PRC and the US repair their relations after the spy plane dispute, the US will accede to PRC demands not to sell Taiwan Aegis- class destroyers.
“Taiwanese Position on Air-collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, PRC)
“Taiwan’s View of Plane Collision” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)
“US Arms Sales to Taiwan” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)


China


1. South China SeaThe International Herald Tribune reported that Asian officials and analysts said that the PRC government and military are increasingly turning away from issues of land borders and to maritime issues, particularly its assertion of sovereignty over all disputed islands and reefs in the South China Sea.
“PRC South China Sea Policy” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)


2. US-Taiwan Naval CooperationAn unnamed defense source said Monday that the US navy sent a delegation of officials to Taiwan last week to provide wireless communication codes to facilitate communication between the two militaries.
“US-Taiwan Naval Cooperation” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)


3. Taiwan Military ExercisesThe Taiwan Defense Ministry said that it will review its defense capabilities against the PRC when it holds an anti-landing exercise next week in the climax of the year’s biggest war games.
“Taiwan Military Exercises” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)


4. Dalai Lama Visits TaiwanThe official PRC state media said on April 8 that the current visit to Taiwan by Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama is an attempt by pro-independence forces in Taiwan and Tibet to split China.
“Dalai Lama Visits Taiwan” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)


Korea


1. DPRK Spy ControversySong Du-yul, a Korean-German professor accused by ROK rightists of spying for the DPRK, refuted allegations against him, arguing that their arguments are aimed at damaging ROK efforts on rapprochement with the DPRK.
“DPRK Spy Controversy” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, ROK)


2. US View of DPRK ThreatUS Secretary of State Colin Powell stated that the DPRK still presents a serious threat to the ROK. Powell stated, “We are looking very carefully and conducting a review with respect to North Korea… In due course we will engage, and will continue to support President Kim Dae Jung in the South and his efforts.” According to ROK analysts, the channel of consultation and coordination between the ROK Defense Ministry and the US forces in the ROK is apparently showing signs of weakening, as it is alleged to be the cause of different assessments of the present threat that the DPRK poses.
“US Policy toward DPRK” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)
“US-ROK View of DPRK Threat” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)


3. EU Relations with DPRKEU Foreign Relations Commissioner Chris Patten said that the European Union (EU) delegation’s visit to the DPRK was unrelated to any anti-US sentiment. Patten continued that the EU has no intention to provoke the US, arguing that the latest trip is instead an effort to express support toward the ROK.
“EU’s Relations with DPRK” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, ROK)


4. DPRK-Russia SummitA high ranking source in the ROK’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said that the DPRK had informed Russia that Kim Jong-il’s Moscow visit, scheduled for April 17, would have to be postponed.
“DPRK-Russia Summit” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, ROK)


5. DPRK Agricultural ConditionsThe US decided to provide the DPRK with 100,000 tons of food aid, reported a diplomatic source in the US on April 11. Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul, Germany’s Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, announced that Germany would send 30,000 metric tons of beef to the DPRK. The DPRK parliament on April 5 adopted a new budget and policy guidelines that emphasized resolving its food problem and boosting trade and diplomatic relations with the outside world. DPRK Premier Hong Song Nam told the parliament that the country will continue its cautious attempt to improve ties with Western countries, a move essential to win badly needed outside aid.
“US Aid to DPRK” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, ROK)
“Aid to DPRK” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, ROK)
“New DPRK Budget and Policy Guidelines” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)

The Far Eastern Economic Review carried an opinion article by Aidan Foster-Carter of Leeds University which said that the root problem of the DPRK’s agricultural problems is the rigid planning and the whim of its leaders. Foster- Carter stated that a new policy of rezoning is to make it impossible for former owners of the land to claim their holdings.
“DPRK Agricultural Policy” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 12, US)


6. DPRK PoliticsROK government officials and analysts said that the DPRK parliamentary meeting fell short of ROK expectations that a sweeping revision of laws would be enacted to facilitate an open-door policy, and that the DPRK appears to be pursuing a limited policy of diplomatic and economic reforms.
“DPRK Parliamentary Session” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, ROK)


7. Inter-Korean RelationsThe ROK Red Cross asked its counterpart in the DPRK to advance the letter-exchange related notification date from the agreed upon April 15 to April 13. “Why would you bother when we would be doing it anyway?” the DPRK is reported to have replied related to the ROK’s request.
“Red Cross Talks” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, ROK)

The DPRK has begun to reinforce anti-ROK and anti-US propaganda through the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). The KCNA broadcast an interview with Ko Sang-moon, a former high school teacher who was kidnapped by the DPRK while on an overseas trip, who said that Korean students should fight against Americans in the ROK. The KCNA denounced ROK Defense Minister Kim Dong-shin Saturday as a “warmonger” who supports military ties with the US and stressed that the DPRK would not put any efforts into improving relations with the US as long as its counterpart wishes for its nation’s doom and proposes unfavorable pre-conditions for dialogue.
“DPRK Broadcast towards ROK” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, ROK)
“DPRK Relations with US” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, ROK)


8. DPRK Security IssuesThe US Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said two DPRK patrol boats briefly intruded into ROK waters off Yonpyong Island in the West Sea and retreated when challenged by ROK naval vessels.
“DPRK Vessels Intrude ROK Waters” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 11, ROK)

The latest issue of Jane’s Intelligence Review reported that the DPRK retains a limited capability of conducting electronic warfare.
“DPRK Communication Network” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 11, ROK)

Lee Jae-wook, a research fellow at the Korean Institute for Defense Analyses, in a report published on April 6 said the DPRK has exported at least 540 missiles to Libya, Iran and other Middle East countries since 1985. The latest customers of the DPRK missiles included Libya, which bought 50 Rodong-1 missiles with a 1,000-kilometer range.
“DPRK Missile Exports” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)


9. US-ROK Joint ExerciseThe ROK-US Combined Forces Command (CFC) said the ROK and the US will hold an annual joint command post exercise, called “Reception, Staging, Onward Movement and Integration (RSOI),” April 20-26.
“ROK-US Joint Exercise” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 11, ROK)


Japan


1. US-Japan Security RelationshipThe Associated Press reported that the US nuclear submarine USS Chicago arrived unannounced at the Japanese port of Sasebo, breaking a US-Japan agreement to provide Japan with at least 24 hours notice in the event that a nuclear submarine would be entering a Japanese port. Japan’s Foreign Ministry reported that the US apologized for the error and termed it an administrative error.
“US-Japan Security Relationship” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)


2. Japan-Taiwan RelationsThe Yomiuri Shimbun reported that after the cabinet meeting on April 13, five cabinet members strongly expressed their support for issuing a visa for former Taiwan President Lee Teng Hui. Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori confirmed the decision not to accept the visa application.
“Lee Teng Hui’s Visit to Japan” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, Japan)


3. Japanese PoliticsJapanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori told his Cabinet on April 6 that he would step down. The Daily Yomiuri reported that four Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) leaders filed their candidacies on April 12 for the party presidential election, kicking off the race to select a successor to Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori as LDP president.
“Japanese Prime Minister Resigns” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)
“Prime Minister’s Resignation” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, Japan)
“Japanese Politics” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, Japan)

The latest Yomiuri Shimbun opinion poll regarding the Constitution showed that 54 percent of those polled said that it should be revised. 45 percent of the respondents were concerned with environmental issues, and 34 percent with the Constitution’s renunciation of war and the issue of the Self-Defense Forces, down three percent points from the previous year.
“Japanese Constitution” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, Japan)


4. Japanese History TextbookThe Daily Yomiuri reported that the ROK’s decision on April 9 to temporarily recall its ambassador to Tokyo demonstrated to those at home and abroad that the ROK is taking a hard line over Japan’s approval of a controversial history textbook, but that it also indicated that the government wants to keep the issue from undermining relations with Japan. ROK President Kim Dae-jung told Masaya Fujimura, chairman of the Japanese-ROK Economic Cooperation, “The issue of history is a thing of the past, but it is important to our people.” PRC Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan expressed the PRC Government’s indignation over the textbook to Japanese Ambassador to the PRC Anami Koreshige.
“Japanese History Textbook” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 13, Japan)
“ROK on Japanese History Textbook” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, PRC)
“ROK Protest Japanese Textbooks” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, US)
“PRC on Japanese History Textbook” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, PRC)

A group of historians on April 3 defended their new middle school history textbook, while citizens’ groups and a national teachers union held separate press conferences at which they questioned ministry criteria for authorizing history textbooks and claimed that approval of the disputed textbook ran the risk of inflaming jingoism among students.
“History Textbook” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 9, Japan)


5. Japanese NGO’s DPRK VisitThe Japanese nongovernmental Citizens’ Fund for Redress, Network for Redress of War Victims by Japan visited Pyongyang in March to interview DPRK women allegedly forced to serve as sex slaves for the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. Ambassador Jong Thae-hwa, the DPRK’s top negotiator in normalization talks with Japan, told the delegation, “Japan has not settled its militarism. There are growing voices in the United States and Asian countries demanding that Japan settle its past.”
“Japanese NGO’s DPRK Visit” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, US)


Russia


1. Atomic Energy MinistryRussian President Putin on Wednesday dismissed Yevgeniy Adamov from the post of the head of Atomic Energy Ministry (Minatom), and replaced him with Aleksandr Rumyantsev, Executive Director of the Kurchatov Research Institute. Bellona reported that Adamov may have been replaced as head of Minatom because the ministry’s international activities brought no profit and undermined Russia’s non-proliferation obligations. The Russian PIR Center released a report which argues that Putin’s decision to fire Adamov is a good sign for those who are concerned about forming appropriate international climate to ensure nonproliferation of nuclear weapons and dual-use technologies.
“Russian Atomic Energy Ministry” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)


2. US Nonproliferation ProgramsFormer US Senator Sam Nunn argued that the world’s risk of nuclear catastrophe has not diminished since the end of the Cold War, but policy makers must worry about accidental missile launches, unpaid Russian nuclear scientists selling their know-how to rogue states and the vast amounts of Russian nuclear, biological and chemical weapons that are poorly secured. Nunn argued against cuts being considered by the Bush administration to the Cooperative Threat Reduction program.
“Cooperative Threat Reduction Program” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)


3. Foreign Policy ObjectivesRussian officials say that Russian President Vladimir Putin is attempting to move into the areas where the US appears to have disengaged, seeking not only a stronger role for Russia in Western affairs, but also as a hedge against any Bush administration attempt to exclude Russia from security decisions that affect Russia’s interests like NATO expansion and missile defenses.
“Responses to US Foreign Policy: Russia” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)


4. Russia-PRC RelationsDuring their consultations on strategic stability, PRC Deputy Foreign Minister Zhang Deguang and his Russian counterpart G. Mamedov reiterated both sides’ opposition to the deployment of the NMD system and the development of the TMD system of a military bloc nature for the Aisa-Pacific region.
“PRC-Russian Relations” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, PRC)


South Asia


1. Nuclear IssuesTanvir Ahmad Khan writes in The Dawn that while India and Pakistan’s development of nuclear weapons was to force them to dialogue to promote effective management of their nuclear deterrents, their individual talks with the US and others can’t have addressed the need for a comprehensive strategic restraint regime.
“Nuclear Risk Reduction” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)

Indian Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee stated that India was prepared to destroy its nuclear weapons if all other nuclear weapons states decide to destroy theirs.
“India Proposed Disarmament” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)


2. Comprehensive Test Ban TreatySwedish Foreign Minister Anna Lindh urged India to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, and said the European Union wanted both India and Pakistan to resume talks over Kashmir.
“Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)


3. Indian Kashmir Dialogue OfferV. Sudarshan writes in Outlook India that Indian Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee is seeking to reinvigorate talks with certain militant groups and the All Parties Hurriyat Conference over Kashmir in an attempt to stave off a personal political crisis. Sudarshan states that K.C. Pant will be the government’s interlocutor. An editorial in the Times of India argues that should the people decide that the recent initiative is merely an attempt to distract attention from the defense scandal, it will put the government into further problems.
“Kashmir Dialogue Offer” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)
“Comments on Kashmir Dialogue Offer” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)

The Hindu and the Deccan Herald cited government sources which stated that the Indian government may not be adverse to de-linking Kashmir from other issues affecting India-Pakistan relations.
“India-Pakistan Relations” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)


4. India-PRC RelationsLieutenant General H.R.S. Kalkat, commander of India’s Eastern Command Army, stated that India had informed the PRC that India was interested in continuing the process of recognizing the Line of Actual Control. Kalkat also announced the resumption of military-to-military exchanges between the two countries’ armed forces.
“India-PRC Relations” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)

R. Prasannan writes in The Week that, similar to the PRC’s claim that the US EP-3 spy plane was intruding into PRC territory, US and British naval vessels have been intruding into India’s exclusive economic zone without permission to conduct oceanographic surveys.
“Regional Issues” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)


5. Pakistan Military HardwareRussia has backed out of a deal to provide engines for a collaborative effort by Pakistan and the PRC to build the Super-7 fighter plane.
“Military Hardware” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)


6. Sri Lanka-LTTE Peace TalksNorwegian Ambassador to Sri Lanka Jon Westborg conceded a key LTTE demand and announced an easing of Sri Lanka’s economic embargo against the LTTE. Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar stated that Sri Lanka was nearly ready to announce the date and venue for peace talks with the LTTE before the end of April. The LTTE ruled out the possibility of talks with the government until Sri Lanka lifted a ban on the LTTE and reciprocated a truce.
“Peace Talks” (SANDNet Weekly Update, Vol. 2 #15)


Nuclear Weapons


1. START I ReportingThe US State Department’s Bureau of Arms Control released a fact sheet listing the aggregate numbers of strategic (nuclear) offensive arms in existence within countries covered by the START I agreement.
“Nuclear Weapons Report” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)


2. Kursk SubmarineThe Norwegian independent station TV2 said that the Russian nuclear submarine Kursk had nuclear missiles aboard when it sank last year, despite Russian assurances it carried only conventional weapons. Grigorij Tjomtsjin, a member of a Russian commission investigating the accident, told the station that documents he had seen indicate that there were two SSN19 nuclear missiles aboard, but later denied having made the statements.
“Kursk Submarine” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)


Missile Defense


1. Russian MD ProposalPeter Baker writes in the Washington Post that Russia’s proposed alternative to the US missile defense plan is just a theoretical framework for how a mobile European-based system might be developed using Russian technology, but offers little technical evaluation and no cost estimates, development timetables or organizational structures.
“Russian MD Proposal” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)


2. US Missile Defense ProgramA US Defense Department official reported that technical problems with a new Boeing booster rocket have delayed its first flight until at least August. The team of aerospace contractors developing the US Air Force’s Space-Based Laser Integrated Flight Experiment (SBL-IFX) has successfully completed the experimental satellite’s System Requirements Review, and reviewed the results with the US Air Force and the Defense Department’s Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO).
“US Missile Defense Program” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)
“Missile Defense Contracts” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)


3. CommentaryIvan Eland, director of defense policy studies, and Daniel Lee, research assistant, argue that missile threats to the US depends on the intentions of those rogue states and significant positive political developments have recently occurred in the DPRK and Iran to reduce the threats facing the US. They argue that these political changes justify a slowing of the development and deployment of a limited land-based national missile defense.
“Missile Defense Commentary” (NPP Weekly FLASH, V.3 #14)

More than 40 ROK civic groups on Monday formed an alliance, the Korean Committee Against NMD-TMD and For Peace, to oppose US missile defense programs, claiming that such moves will prevent peace from prevailing on the Korean peninsula.
“ROK Views of Missile Defense” (NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, ROK)

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