The Vice President’s long opposition to missile defense meets the reality of North Korea.
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Said Reagan in announcing his idea:
“We are launching an effort which holds the promise of changing the course of human history.”
Indeed. Which is precisely what infuriated Biden and his liberal allies.
What so offended Biden was that Reagan was making a direct challenge to the liberal sacred cow that was nuclear deterrence doctrine – mutual assured destruction. Or MAD as its appropriate acronym had it. In short, the liberal idea – the conventional wisdom of the day – was “if you kill us you will die too.”
Reagan was appalled at this thinking – and had no hesitation in challenging the conventional wisdom. It is hard to realize now how much the idea of “arms control” had essentially developed into a liberal religion, its practitioners considered more priests than bureaucrats.
As history now records, SDI became a central player in ending the Cold War. It was SDI that brought the Reykjavik Reagan-Gorbachev summit to an abrupt end as Gorbachev sought to effectively end the program. Reagan would have none of it, and walked out rather than be pressured to stop SDI.
None of this impressed Biden, although he was shown to be demonstrably wrong. Thus his opposition to the program continued through the years.
By the time George W. Bush arrived in the White House to keep SDI moving, Biden was still doing his best to thwart the program.
As the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman, Biden called a July 24, 2001 hearing on a Bush budget request for $8 billion in SDI research.
Biden made plain his opposition, opening the hearing with a reference to a Wall Street Journal editorial on SDI that referred to Biden as “Dr. No.”
The then-Senator immediately raised the Bush administration’s specific insistence that at some point in the future North Korea could have a nuclear missile and threaten to use it against America.
Biden ridiculed the very notion of this possibility. He was nothing if not an avid believer in the sanctity of the arms control priesthood. To push forward SDI was an attack on arms control, said Biden and he would have none of it.
Scorned the future vice president:
The threat has variously been described as a crude missile threat by a rogue state…. The threat has variously been described as a crude missile threat from North Korea, Iraq, or Iran, the risk of an accidental launch of a sophisticated Russian ICBM, or of the danger posed by missiles which might menace U.S. forces deployed on the Korean Peninsula, or some other hot spot around the world….. It seems to me that answering the “why” question on missile defense requires a discussion not only of the threats, but how real they are, how damaging to U.S. interests they are, how immediate they are, and also the alternatives available to meet those threats. …
Have we seriously explored a diplomatic solution to North Korea’s development of and
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?