BARRY PAVEL: Why don’t we look to get started here? Good afternoon everyone. And then you for joining this discussion on “What’s Next? Missile Defense in 2030.” And I was thinking about this session, which will be really fun, I was realizing that I don’t even know what I’ll be doing at 20:30 p.m. tonight, let alone having confidence in what we can project. But I think we’ll certainly stimulate a discussion of what we might see coming next as opposed to assuming that the present dynamics that we’ve been discussing for the good part of the day here are going to be exactly the same tomorrow or certainly sometime in the planning – in the planning period.
So I’m very excited to introduce three exceptionally well-qualified strategic thinkers and technologists to discuss the future trajectory of missile defense technology against the backdrop of some unforeseen threats, some global megatrends and some technology and capability developments that will factor into our discussion.
A very brief introduction. To my immediate right, we have Dean Wilkening, who’s a physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, a former senior research scientist at Stanford University, but also, as some know, was very helpful for the – at the outset of the Obama administration as we ran – when I was at the White House ran the “Missile Defense Review.” Dean had done some path breaking work on missile defense that greatly informed the Obama administration’s initial decisions on taking what was called a phased adaptive approach to missile defense.
Next to him is someone else who was also extremely influential in that exercise when he was at the Pentagon, and that’s Jim Miller, who is currently president of Adaptive Strategies LLC. He is the former undersecretary of defense for policy, having just recently departed from that position this year. As you can tell already, he’s refreshed and ready to go.
And then, we also have Robert Stein, who is a senior fellow and studies a lot of technologies and other issues with the Defense Science Board associated with the Pentagon.
Let me just set a little bit of the context. Every four years, the National Intelligence Council here releases a report that projects global trends out 10 or 20 years. It does so to try to frame leaders, policymakers, decisions on strategies and policies. And, at the Scowcroft Center, as you heard Fred Kempe talk about a bit and Ellen Tauscher, we’re trying to stitch some of these trends together to – and then apply it to various work areas, to cybersecurity, to transatlantic security, to Asia, to the Middle East, to defense industry, where we had this conference here a couple of weeks ago where Ellen mentioned drones flying in the board room in the corner. And so we’re applying this framework in many areas. And I sort of think of this panel as applying the framework to missile defense as well.
Twenty thirty is just 16 years away. A lot can happen in that timeframe. When we go back 16 years to 1998, the landscape looked very different than it does today. The September 11th attacks were still three years away. The NATO alliance had 16 members. Less than 4 percent of the world used the Internet, which I think is a very stark change. China’s per capita GDP was about one tenth of what it is today, and there’s many, many other examples. And considering the tectonic shifts and the strategic shocks that have occurred since then, many of which caught most of us if not all of us by surprise, I think this panel on future threats and capabilities serves as the perfect capstone to today’s excellent discussions.
Before I turn it over to my panelists to begin their remarks, I just want to remind you, on Twitter, use the hashtag #acmd14. And if people want to move forward to – there’s additional seats in the front row.
So I think with that very brief scene setter, I’d like to turn to Jim Miller and to hear his thoughts on where we see this – the key elements of this space moving forward.
JAMES MILLER: Barry, thanks very much. And thanks to you and Ian Brzezinski and the Atlantic Council both this conference today and all the great work that’s been done over the years and very recently on European security specifically.
As we think about missile defense in the 2030 timeframe, I think it’s useful to recall the words of former Yankee’s great Yogi Berra and that is that prediction is very difficult, especially when it’s about the future. And so, just as you did, I had a little look in the rearview mirror and thought about 16 years ago, in 1998, and just a couple of other items I’ll add to your list, Barry.
First, a couple of guys from Stanford, Larry Page, and a guy named Sergey Brin had a little startup called Google, currently 400 billion market cap today, quite a change indicative of the change that you indicated with respect to Internet. And also 16 years ago this year, more pertinent to today’s topic, North Korea flew a Taepodong-1 over Japan as part of its test program. People will remember that very vividly. Since then, North Korea has tested nuclear weapons three times and it’s tested its Taepodong-2 and of even greater concern is now capable of displaying it, it appears – deploying the KN-08 ICBM capable of reaching the United States.
So we’ve seen major threats in those 16 years of rise in form of North Korea. We’ve seen others as well – I’ll try to speak to it later. And as we look out in the next 16 years, I would just start by agreeing with your premise that while we need to look at trends, we also need to be resilient for the possibility of surprise.
In this context, I wanted to address quickly three questions. The first fundamental question is whether the technology for missile defense over the next 16 years can keep up with the technology and operating concepts for ballistic missiles and cruise missiles.
If we consulted that same document that you mentioned, the strategic trends 2030, we’d reach – we’d find an interesting although inconclusive agreement I’d like to just cite it. It remains to be seen whether technologically advanced and expensive missile defense systems can keep pace with the increasing numbers of ballistic and cruise missiles that can be employed against them. It remains to be seen that.
It’s worth unpacking the problem a little bit. I want to go a little further than that, obviously. And over the next decade, in 16 years and beyond, we can see the threat continue and should expect the threat to continue to advance in a number of ways.
First of all, just as the number of ballistic missiles skyrocketed – no pun intended – over the last 16 years, we can expect those numbers to continue to go up across the globe for the next 16 years. Ballistic missiles and cruise missiles are a cheap delivery system relative to many others. And you see the trends there. We’re seeing increased precision for conventional payloads and we’ll see that more broadly. At the same time as we see biotech advances, we see advanced – manufacturing advance and as we see 3DF (sp), 3D40 (sp) printing as well advance, we will see small groups, including terrorist groups in small states have more capability for everything from unmanned aerial vehicles to potentially chemical or biological weapons. And the widespread proliferation of UAVs over the coming 16 years is likely to make those a very interesting delivery vehicle even for small states.
Second, at the other end of the spectrum on delivery systems, we will see the United States, Russia and China at least with the capacity to deliver munitions both with super-sonic or hyper-sonic cruise missiles as well as the possibility of boost-glide devices off of ballistic missiles. Those technologies are in development today, though they look pretty promising.
So if you’re on the defender side, that’s a pretty daunting set of issues that we’ve got to deal with. And I think for three reasons that we still ought to make a bet on missile defense, and let me say what those are very briefly.
First, we have tremendous technology advantage and human capital advantage – those two are intertwined – relative to our competitors. And, second, we have the ability to out scale regional threats like North Korea and Iran. We would prefer not to get into a situation where we’re spending millions of dollars to defeat a threat that costs thousands of dollars. But if we need to, we have the capacity to spend more than they do. And, third, and incredibly importantly, the U.S. and our allies and partners globally bring the combination of a multiplier effect for our human capital and advanced technology, first of all, and, second, the ability to stitch our systems and share information in a way that, for example, General Pat O’Reilly, when he was head of the Missile Defense Agency, worked to advance in every region.
And so my bottom line assessment on the 2030 timeframe is it’s – although it’s quite uncertain, is that we have a lot of advantages and that we should be able to – we should be able to sustain a capability. Pat’s successor, Jim Syring, has a lot of work to do, as does his team.
On the other hand, I would expect over the next 16 years the same situation to apply for national missile defense that applies today with some greater uncertainty. And that is that both Russia and China are likely to a have a combination of quantity and quality of countermeasures to be able to offset any national missile defense system of the United States. They have the technology. They have the incentive to do so. And I think I would expect them to do so. And we are – although we have a very capable missile defense system for ballistic missiles, we’re a long way away from being able to have nationwide cruise missile defense.
So if we continue on a reasonable path and invest intelligently and work closely with our allies and partners, we’ve got a good prospect to be first approximation in the same relative position that we are today, capable of dealing with the regional threats but not capable for a homeland defense of dealing with a large-scale attack. And we’re going to need to work hard over the coming decade plus to maintain that position.
I want to mention two wild cards in particular. First, if Russia or China particularly would share countermeasures with North Korea or Iran, it’s not something that we expect or something they understand that we have taken exceedingly dim view toward, but if they were to share advanced countermeasures, it would throw that earlier calculation into question. It’s not in Russia or China’s interest to do so, but it’s an important caveat. And, second, the United States will have choices in the coming really five to 10 years about additional advanced technologies, including directed energy systems, including rail gun technologies as well. And I would expect, by 2030, we may have a mixed approach with some of those systems in play and that will complicate the calculations to some degree.
Question two – and the second and third I’ll address more swiftly – the U.S. and our allies and partners are technology and intelligence more effectively and can we get more bang for the buck on missile defense? I know that – understand that Bob Bell talked earlier today about NATO missile defense in particular. And while I’m here, I just want to reiterate how – although I’m out of administration for a few months, how strong the commitment is to the European Phased Adaptive Approach and we’re on track for phase two in 2015 and Romania phase three in 2018 and Poland. And I’m 100 percent sure that by 2018 that we will have that deployment in Poland and that that will be sustained into the future. And the same story is true with variations in the Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. I won’t go through the details. Maybe we could leave that for the Q&A period.
But the U.S. needs to take some steps to improve our posture in this regard. And I want to highlight three related areas.
The first is that this administration took important steps to reform export control. And that has helped significantly. There’s a long way to go and even further to go as we look to reform our technology, security and foreign disclosure processes to be able to work more effectively with our allies and partners. Protecting our so-called crown jewels of our systems is important but equally important for our export control technology security regime is to be able to share with our allies and partners. I’m proud to be a part of the steps that we took in that regard. We’ve got a lot of work to do there.
Second, to stay ahead of these threats, we need to do better at protecting our cyber and that – I’ll start with the protection of intellectual property – and it makes no sense to have an export control regime that protects – that makes it challenging to share technology with our allies and then have others to be able to come in to our critical defense contractors and be able to extract information. So we’ve got to do much better at protecting our intellectual property and work with our allies and partners so that they can do that as well.
And third, and related, we’ve really go to work to enhance the survivability and resilience of our command and control systems relating to missile defense and related to national command and control broadly.
So that leads to my third and final issue, and that is the question of what implications will advances in technology have for strategic stability and for missile defense as well? And I’m thinking here of several in particular.
Directed energy and boost-glide and hypersonic I mentioned before, but in addition, both counter-space capabilities and cyber need to be a consideration as we think about the future of missile defense and of stability.
And, in this regard, I want to use a couple of quotations here or at least refer to DNI Jim Clapper. He testified earlier this year that threats to U.S. space systems will increase in the future and that includes both disruptive and destructive counter-space capabilities. And DNI Clapper also testified to something that should not surprise anybody tracking cyber today and that is that the risk of exploitation disruption and even destruction for critical networks is growing.
And because of all these changes, the bases for strategic stability with the U.S. vis-à-vis Russia and with the U.S. vis-à-vis China are likely to change by 2030. There may be more uncertainty about the capabilities of these emerging systems. And this will put a huge priority both on the resilience and survivability of our own systems, of the U.S. systems, but also on our being able to have extensive and frank discussions with both the Russians and Chinese about the capabilities, about doctrine, and about intention. Those talks are underway on both – so-called track one, government to government, and on track two and track 1.5 with think tanks and with mixed groups. And they need to accelerate and they need to go into more depth over the coming decades because the challenges – just as you suggested at the outset, Barry – the challenges will evolve over the next 16 years. And the last thing that we want to have is misperception, miscommunication and miscalculation resulting in an inadvertent conflict.
So let me stop there and say once again thanks to the Atlantic Council, thanks to the great work that’s been done here.
MR. PAVEL: Thanks very much, Jim. I have 1,000 questions, but I think I’ll postpone them until after we hear from our other panelists. But it was a fantastic opening discussion that I think raises – will set the stage for the rest of this panel. But now I’d like to turn to Dean and hear what his thoughts are.
DEAN WILKENING: Thank you, Barry. And I too, like Jim, would like to thank both you and the Atlantic Council for hosting a very interesting discussion on missile defense.
Well, like Barry and Jim, I thought back 15 years and used that as sort of a framework for thinking how far we might be in the future, in 2030.
First thing I noticed was 15 years is not a lot of time. It’s basically one development cycle of a major weapon system. So my view is that in 2030, we’re going to see mostly evolutionary developments in missile defense, not revolutionary, although we could quibble about where the boundary between evolutionary and revolutionary changes exists.
Let me talk about three areas: one is political developments, threat developments, and then system development. And I’ll focus mostly on the latter.
Over the last 15 years, we had a major political development with respect to missile defense, mainly the U.S. withdrawal from the ABM Treaty. And it’s interesting to note for those that are fans of arms control, the ABM Treaty was a very good treaty in that it placed very tight constraints on the development of missile development systems, and until the U.S. withdrew, we could not do 90 percent of the things we’re doing today as I think Pat and some others said earlier today. I do not see in the next 15 years any enthusiasm for re-imposing any political constraints on missile defense systems. So whereas there was a sea change 12 years ago, I don’t see any major political developments.
With respect to the threat, as many speakers have already mentioned, there has been tremendous evolution of the threat, expansion of the threat, certainly regional missile threats. I think in the intercontinental range, the United States has had a tendency to exaggerate how quickly states will develop ICBMs, going back to the Rumsfeld Commission in 1988, five years from a decision to do so. They can have that capability. So either you have to conclude that North Korea did not decide to do so or, in fact, it’s harder to develop ICBMs than the Rumsfeld Commission thought. I think it’s the latter.
When might states, North Korea, Iran in particular develop ICBMs, I would put it in the 2020 timeframe. Certainly by 2030, North Korea will have operational ICBMs.
The regional missile threats, we’ve seen a lot of developments, nuclear tests by India and Pakistan, North Korea more importantly. We’ve seen the development of space launch vehicles by both North Korea and Iran, and so we’re going to see a continued expansion of the sophistication and the number of missiles, as Jim alluded to just a moment ago.
There are some interesting potential developments in the threats base 15 years out, implosion of Pakistan. If Iran goes nuclear, the whole Middle East is up for grabs, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the rest. So that is a potential disaster in the making.
I think probably the first full-scale use of missile defense in a wartime situation we may see in next 15 years and it will be Israeli missile defense against regional threats. We already saw the Iron Dome in operation not more than a year or so ago. And one could only hope that, in the future, the missile defense systems operate as well as the Iron Dome did a few years back.
Let me talk a little bit about system evolution. If we go back 10 to 20 years ago, we had mostly the – what we called theater missile defense systems – PAC-3, THAAD, the Standard Missile-3, Aegis systems – all were in early stages of development and now they have reached maturity. We are fielding them in modest numbers as much as we can afford budget wise. We’re looking at foreign military sales of some of these systems. Going forward, I will see probably the next generation of a lot of these regional missile defense systems, possibly follow-ons to THAAD, possible follow-ons to the Standard Missile-3.
In the ground-based interceptor arena, that is the system that has at least on the test range has performed less well than people had hoped. I think the earlier panel at noon talked about that a little bit. It’s essentially a prototype design, and when you put a prototype system out in the field, it’s great for testing. It’s great to learn from the failures. But if you’re going to rely on that as an operational system, you shouldn’t be too surprised that it does tend to fail more than you’d like. So I think in the next 15 years, we will see a redesigned ground-based interceptor and I believe it will work quite well so by 2030, we will have a well-functioning ground-based missile – homeland missile defense architecture.
But, in fact, the interceptors, in my view, are the smaller piece of the pie with respect to missile defense. It’s really the sensors and the command and control that are the most important element. If we go back 15 years, the upgraded early warning radars, in the 1990s, X Band radars were just coming into being, the Transmit/Receive Module technology, and over the last 10 to 15, 20 years, we’ve seen the maturation of a lot of the high-frequency radars. We are now close to the end of modernizing our upgraded early warning radars so there’s been a lot of activity in the sensor arena, not so much in the space-based arena, although the SBIRS High system that replaced the old DSB defense board program satellite has been deployed and is working very well. The space missile tracking system SBIRS Low is the original name. Then it became STSS, and it became PTSS, and then that was cancelled last year.
So looking back over 15 years, we have not seen a successful development of a space-based tracking sensor, but I think in the next 15 years, we likely will. So I would predict by 2030 we may see a very interesting and important space-based sensor architecture.
So if I was to try to summarize, I think the technology of missile defense is sound. It’s very good technology. One way I – sometimes I like to say it is it’s the technology of precision-guided munitions applied to the missile defense problem. So if you think precision-guided munitions have had a dramatic change in conventional warfare, I think that’s just what we’re seeing with the missile defense problem.
I don’t see a lot of new technologies. I’ll talk about lasers and rail guns in a minute. I do not think by 2030 we will see space-based weapons; sensors, yes, not the interceptors. Most of the interceptors will be hit to kill, maybe with multiple kill vehicles, but it’s going to be that same class of technology, again, an evolution from the kinds of technologies that I think are working quite well today.
With respect to sensors, I think that’s one of the most important arenas we will evolutionary improvements. We will see a long-range discriminating radar of some sort, S Band, X Band, something like that deployed around the continental United States. As I said earlier, we will probably see space-based tracking sensors, possibly airborne adjuncts as well, especially if you’re worried about the survivability of space-based assets, so there are a lot of interesting opportunities in the optical tracking and sensor arena.
And I think it was alluded to briefly earlier but often ignored is software, signal processing, command and control, or in the missile defense arena it’s C2BMC, command, battle management, communication and control systems, that integrate all that data from the various sensors and use it to efficiently allocate interceptors to discriminate decoys and the like. There’s a lot of interesting developments I think that will take place in the C2BMC sensor – the software arena, excuse me.
Now, as for the new technologies, lasers and rail guns are interesting technologies, definitely worthwhile conducting research and development on it. I think by the 2030 timeframe, we may see some niche applications of those technologies, mostly for point defense – rail guns for point defense of airfields, lasers for point defense of capital ships, maybe some limited range boost phase intercept systems. But I don’t think they will have a dramatic effect on our missile defense capability, certainly not for protecting the national territory or the territory of our allies. That will remain the domain of midcourse, and, to some extent, terminal intercept systems, hit-to-kill systems.
I think if there was one class of technologies that would be extremely interesting to see, though I have no clever ideas about what technology this might be is technologies that can reduce the cost of missile defense systems per shot, per kill. And, again, this has been alluded to earlier by a number of people.
That if there is one technology that will be a sea change in missile defense, a sea change in the role that missile defense will play in U.S. national strategy, it will be if we can make the cost per shot competitive with the cost of an offensive missile. Today, it’s probably five to 10 times more expensive, something in that arena, which does not by the way mean you don’t deploy missile defense against regional adversaries, because, as Jim said, it’s really – to be a little technical, it’s the cost exchange – it’s the cost relative to our GDP of the cost of that offensive missile to North Korea’s GDP. We can win that competition. But when you turn to China and you look at the conventional missile threat that China poses, you really start having to worry about the cost of your defensive shot versus the cost of your offensive shot.
And if we can reduce the cost of our defense interceptors, it opens up the possibility of moving away from what today is a thin defense and probably by 2030 will also be a thin, limited defense architecture as part of our strategy to thinking about much thicker defenses, defense dominance, and things like that. So if one can come up with those technologies, and I would love to hear great ideas from industry and elsewhere about that, that will be truly a sea change.
And, as, again, I will reiterate a point made earlier, it’s the integration – what we will see by 2030 I believe is the integration not only of missile defense systems integrated with one another, the sensors and the shooters but also integrated with offensive operations and other forms of operation. And I think that will greatly enhance the effectiveness of missile defense as one of the tools in our toolkit. It will not – unless we can get this cost-exchange ratio changed, it will not be a capability we can stand on alone but it will become an increasingly effective instrument in our national arsenal.
So let me leave it at that.
MR. PAVEL: Thank you very much, Dean. I now have different questions for Jim as a result of your discussion, but I’ll still hold those until we hear from Bob for his views.
ROBERT STEIN: I’ll try to give you another bunch of questions if I can.
As I think was said in comments earlier today, I too am going to focus on the more conventional role of missile defense in dealing with rogue threats, non-nuclear threats, et cetera and not even pretend that there is a missile defense damage denial role in a massive nuclear attack against the country. That’s the provenance clearly of deterrence to the extent that raising doubts helps that fine but it’s largely on the offense side that that (resides ?).
So I’m going to talk actually about two and a half subjects. Subject number one, evolution in missile defense, where I see it going. I’ve been involved in missile defense since the early ’60s so I’ve seen a bunch of evolution. I’ve actually seen three revolutions, and I see a fourth possibly on the horizon, which I want to talk about, and then I’m going to talk – my half subject will be land attack cruise missiles, something we are just not stepping up the plate on in the country.
So let me go to the – let me go to the – excuse me – to the evolution part. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that over the next 15, 16 years, we will continue progress on all of the elements of missile defense. There’s no question in my mind we will see a new EKV on the GBI. We will see sensors. If you compare the sensors, both the ground sensors and the sensors in space that we have today compared to what we had 15, maybe 20 years ago, there’s virtually no comparison in terms of the accuracies, the sensitivities, the ranges that they can work at, the precision that they work at, and so on.
Missile technology has come a long way, although not quite as far I think as some of us tend to think. Actually, I was part of range measurement work on missiles that were fired and developed by ARPA, as it was called, in the ’60s. Boeing actually built one. The then Douglas Aircraft built the other. This was when we thought we were going to defend nuclear silos 1,000 feet away, when we were hardening silos.
Why 1,000 feet away? Because the atmosphere will have done its job by the time a ballistic missile gets down to 1,000 feet or 2,000 feet in altitude and strip out all the decoys which we really did not know how to deal with during those times. That gave rise to the need for some exquisite missile capability. And if you can imagine, both of those companies built, developed and had success on the test range with missiles that reach mach 10 in eight-tenths of a second. I’ll save you the calculation. It’s an average of 400 Gs for eight-tenths of a second. It was quite incredible. They also did 400 G lateral turns. So it was kind of eye-watering technology. And in different ways, particularly in guidance more than propulsion we have developed pretty sophisticated capabilities, and that will continue.
I think the big area that we will see evolution is something that Dean touched on is how we orchestrate our command and control, how we tie together sensors that are hundreds if not thousands of miles apart, geo-locate them, register things so that a sensor here tracking the same target that a sensor here is looking at doesn’t end up reporting it as two targets. It sounds trivial. Trust me: it’s not trivial to be able to do that. I think we’ll see a lot of progress in that arena, which is really important to networked ballistic missile defense, which is what we really depend upon to get large areas of protection.
I think we will also worry more than we are worrying now about how we make our missile defense cyber proof and electronic warfare proof. Both of them are areas that, in my belief, we need to invest more attention in, and I’m sure we will over that – over that period of time.
None of those things will yield new revolutionary capabilities. We will continue to get better at what we do. Even if – even if the next generation or the generation after the next generation of a new kill vehicle allows us to do some multiples, that is not going to fundamentally solve the cost-exchange ratio that everybody has talked about, which is one of the real problems with missile defense. Something else has to come along to reduce that significantly if we’re going to reduce it significantly.
So that will now lead me to my possible revolutionary change. I’ve seen, as I said, three revolutions in missile defense. Back in ’60s – this is hard to imagine in today’s world, but back in ’60s, in the Nike systems that we had, the warheads were nuclear; a guidance designer’s dream, a nuclear warhead. You don’t have to get exquisitely close to a missile. Hard to imagine that the country stood still and accepted nuclear tipped missile sitting in residential neighborhoods in probably 40 or 50 locations across the United States, but we did.
Guidance of those were command guided missiles. We then learned how to do semi-active and later active guidance, which allowed us to get rid of the nuclear warheads and put on blast rod warheads, fairly heavy ones, and we yet improved guidance. That opened up all kinds of avenues for being able to use missile defenses that we had not used before, both air and missile defenses.
Another revolution occurred: the guidance got better and better and better; the air dynamics to go with them got better and better and better. We moved out into space, where it was sort of even easier to get exquisitely good miss distance, and so it’s then – (inaudible) – on all warheads. What we’ll do now is drive my missile directly into the other guy’s missile, get – first of all, get a lot more energy involved when I do that and not depend upon the spray of a warhead or a fuse, and that’s been very, very successful. And we see it virtually in all of our exoatmospheric missiles and in the PAC-3 missiles in Patriot. And so that has been a revolution.
So now what’s the revolution coming? And I suspect that you’re all expecting the words to come out of my mouth that Dean mentioned, “I’m going to go directed energy.” Those are not the words that are going to come out of my mouth. I agree 100 percent with what Dean said: Interesting technologies. We shouldn’t give up on them. Rail guns are yet to be proven. They will have a limited role in any case. DE has been one of those things. The promise has been around the corner seven years away. That’s the algorithm. No matter when you ask the question, I believe they do have a good role in missile defense, but not necessarily for killing a target. There are other things that could be very useful for directed energy to be more feasible.
There is a natural synergy that I believe the country has not been exploiting. As I build better and better and better conventional missile defenses, I force my adversaries into positions of having to deploy decoys, having to do maneuvers, both evasive maneuvers and accuracy correction maneuvers, putting seekers on missile so they can get good miss distance so that they can reduce the payload, so that they can maintain lethality while putting other things on the missiles to confound the defenses. Every one of those things that they do to a missile, dispensing decoys, having to get exquisite miss distance, stargazing to know where they are – all of these things open up an avenue that gives me an opportunity to mess with those missiles. Mess is a technical term.
All of those things we talk about doing, but there is virtually no coordination, at least that I’m aware of, without looking at how missile defense, our use of various cyber techniques, our use of electronic warfare as a package, as a – I’ll use the high word against because it rolls off your tongue so nicely – an integrated package could be used together so that we can do a little bit of steering of what he does by what my conventional defenses do, and then I can exploit those with some of the other. It’s a fertile field. I think that there are significant technological opportunities to be able to do that.
There are issues associated with it. Some are technical issues. Some are political issues. There are a variety of issues associated with doing that. But it’s something that I believe that we really ought to exploit. And it represents a true layering of capabilities. The reason layers work is they’re independent. If you’re using the same sensors from one layer to another, you don’t quite have the independence that you think you have so you can’t quite cascade the – (inaudible) – like we like to do on a piece of paper.
This would represent really a true, very different phenomenological layering that we could do. And I think there’s potential in that. So let me end with my half subject and it’s a half subject because I almost have nothing to say about it.
Land attack cruise missiles – the United States has provided lessons to the entire rest of the world about how effective land attack cruise missiles can be in the early stages of a conflict. That lesson cannot have gone unnoticed throughout the rest of the world. They are fundamentally different. We tend to talk about missile defense, but cruise missiles and ballistic missiles are really quite different.
Ballistic missiles are easy to see. They’re up there. Any sensor in the world, if it’s got the range, can find them, see them, whatever. But, boy, are they hard to knock down. They’re on a nice ballistic trajectory and unless you blow them to smithereens, they keep coming. So easy to see, really difficult to knock down.
Cruise missiles are exactly the opposite. If you get anywhere near them and they fall down where they are, far away from you, but boy are they hard to find. They hug the earth. They can be exquisitely small. There’re various countermeasures that they can employ. So they’re very different. And so although our endoatmospheric air and missile defense systems deal with both, to a degree, when you want to get large area protection, you’ve got to do something different, other than you can do with those. And again, it’s something that has sort of been on the backburner in the United States for as far back as I can possibly remember. We don’t pay serious attention to it. By “serious” I mean really start doing something about it.
The only one who’s really dealt with cruise missiles largely is the Navy because their protection of ships is important. But if you think a lot of countries have ballistic missiles, sometimes go look at who has cruise missiles, and far more countries have cruise missiles than ballistic missiles.
So it’s a final note. We really need to get serious about cruise missiles. It will take one conflict with bad results to make us serious. It would be nice to get ahead of that power curve, rather than behind it. So those are my comments.
MR. PAVEL: Thanks very much, Bob. And if you know half about that topic, then I hesitate to say that the percentage of that topic that I know about. But you raise a very interesting issue for me and it’s topical today. President Obama gave a major speech at West Point today that had a lot of noteworthy items in it. But one of them that really caught my eye was his emphasis on this trend that some of you had spoken about today. And I know General O’Reilly and others in the Brent Scowcroft Center have been writing and thinking about this, and that’s the individual empowerment trend, which gives individuals and groups the ability to do things increasingly that only nation-states could do.
And I wonder to what extent do you think in this period – I’ll start with Bob, but would love to hear from Dean and Jim – to what extent do you think in this period that we’ll see individuals or groups get access to a range of the tools that you’ve been discussing? I mean, we know they have access to ballistic missiles of various ranges, tending toward the shorter. We’ve seen those used in conflict in the Middle East.
But I wonder also about land attack cruise missiles. I wonder about missile defenses. And I’m not sure sort of how that plays into this. I wonder about space access, which I know from reading some of the literature is increasingly available to anybody who has a few tens of thousands of dollars to watch various terrestrial locations. And I wonder about counter-space. Not to mention – I think we know cyber is in such hands. But how does this sort of individual actor role – how much – to what extent should that change our discussion here?
MR. STEIN: I would not worry particularly about ballistic missiles in the hands of individuals or small groups. They take a lot of infrastructure to support them and you don’t kind of carry them around on your back as you move. Nor would I worry about ballistic missile defenses in the hands of small groups because I don’t think they’re going to worry, particularly about being attacked by things they have good defense upon.
I think if I were really going to worry about things, I would really worry about, again, land attack cruise missiles serving not a military purpose, but a political purpose. They don’t require much accuracy. You can create havoc in a city with them. They don’t have to go very long distance. If you can fly a model airplane, you can essentially fly cruise missile. And there are various warheads, not nuclear, but warheads that can be made in literally people’s garages that could create havoc in a city. I would really worry. It’s kind of the terrorist possible use of a drone or a cruise missile that, again, we’re not prepared to deal with. And I don’t know if we’re ever going to be able to deal with that because it’s exquisitely expensive to deal with that.
So it’s a potential open door. I’m sure, if you would ask me what would you do about it, if you were – (inaudible) – I would say, I don’t know.
MR. PAVEL: I’m particularly worried about that scenario that you’ve painted combined with Jim’s point on the explosion of biotechnology. That to me is a really –
MR. STEIN: That was one of my garage, bathtub –
MR. PAVEL: Okay –
MR. STEIN: That and chemical are the two you’d worry about.
MR. PAVEL: Jim, I don’t know if you’ve thoughts on this question.
MR. MILLER: Barry, I share Bob’s concern about the possibility for unmanned aerial vehicle technology being used effectively as cruise missile by small groups and so forth and then the possibility that terrorists could do that. And the first approach on that I think is through counterterrorism and effective intelligence and so forth. But I think it’s also possible that, you know, with good but not perfect intelligence one could image a desirability to be able to put up effectively a point defense or a small area defense if the relative location were isolated.
I would differ a little bit on the question of ballistic missile threats in the sense – and this may depend on where you draw the line between terrorist threat and so-called hybrid threat. But if you look at what Hezbollah has today, I certainly consider them a terrorist group, and they have a substantial ballistic missile capability you referred to Iron Dome’s success, I guess you did earlier. And I think that the ability to deal with large numbers of relatively short-range systems, including – and to do so at low cost is going to be an important part of security for Israel and perhaps for many of our other partners and allies as well.
MR. PAVEL: Dean, did you have any thoughts on that or –
MR. WILKENING: Yeah, I echo exactly those concerns. And if there’s one marriage of a delivery system and a warhead I’d worry about, it’s drones and biological weapons. And it’s not biotech. It’s anthrax. Anthrax is a great weapon, easy to make relatively. You don’t need to know genetic engineering. You just need to know some microbiology. And so that would be very worrisome.
The good news is that a mask will basically protect you. So if you can get warning, at least for military personnel, to put on a mask, you’ll save most – a large percentage of the troops on a base. What to do with a city, I don’t know. Israel, obviously, understands our problem, but I don’t know about how many other people do.
MR. PAVEL: Great. Let me ask two more questions, and then we’ll open it up to the audience. My second question is sort of a – almost an analytic framework question. We talked a lot about relatively inexpensive, and in some cases, relocatable missile defenses themselves. We have pictures of one of them behind me. We talked about maybe directed energy, but not as likely, maybe railgun, but not as likely. I’ve had other physicists on this stage telling me something else. But for now, I’ll suspend my uncertainty.
We’ve talked about potential breakthroughs in additive manufacturing leading to dramatic reductions in cost effectiveness for certain systems. We’ve talked about much cheaper and distributed access to space-based capabilities, to, you know, increased capabilities for networked battle management and command and control, counter-space concerns, obviously cyber offense and defense.
And Henry, in the Scowcroft Center, and I were talking about this at the break and how cyber is going to remain an offense dominant domain for a while. And I’m not sure – I was just thrilled to hear Jim and other panelists discuss the linkage between cyber, security, and missile defense command and control in particular, which I think is underappreciated to a great extent.
And then, I also wonder if we’ve thought about countries like China, who are getting increasingly innovative and is it possible they’ll come to a more innovative set of defense systems that can surprise us in some way. But I guess – what I’m asking – those micro-questions which we’ve addressed system by system, but I wonder if with all of this broader conversation than the one people of a certain age have grown up with in terms of the strategic balance. We immediately think of offensive, nuclear offensive, conventional, and missile defenses, and we kind of leave it at that. But then, we’re increasingly adding on all of these other areas. That I wonder if it’s – stepping up to the macro level, is it time to have a completely new discussion about what a strategic balance looks like? Because it seems like the areas we’re adding on are potentially more numerous and more significant than some of the core areas that we are very comfortable thinking about.
It’s probably a strange way to ask the question, but it just strikes me all of these new sort of lines of capability and potential technology and potential vulnerability, strikes me instead of just saying keep the framework and let’s work these problems, maybe it’s time to change the framework. I don’t know if any of you have thought about that.
MR. MILLER: Barry, I’ll bite and I know it. (Laughter.) And that is I think that for the next decade, two decades, and into the future that the question of what is a nuclear balance and is it stable vis-à-vis Russia and vis-à-vis China will continue to be a useful separate question to ask. But then, these other issues will cut through that in the sense of will missile defenses, will cyber, will counter-space, will prompt global strike in some form be sufficient to cause one side to have less confidence, and then that’d create instability and crisis and incentives for first use.
And so that’s something I think is important and indeed critical. And if you think about the potential consequences for a major nuclear exchange, it’s something we shouldn’t lose sight of. It will get more murky. It will get more complicated. And we need to be able to have the conversations with Chinese, Russians, and our allies and partners because their interests are at stakes as well about the future basis of that core element of it.
At the same time, I think your question rightly implies that there will be other kinds of strategic attack, whether it’s cyber attack on a critical infrastructure or some other means. And we also need to think about the combination of rules of the road, code of conduct, which we are doing for space and cyber internationally, but then, push that down at the doctrinal level and have, again, those conversations with a number of other countries about the basis for strategic stability more broadly.
If you’re the United States, it looks the elements, in a sense, are the same as for other countries. But the advantage we have of having friendly neighbors on the north and south and substantial oceans on the east and west is important. And so if you think about strategic stability from the Israeli perspective, then you’ve got – you get into questions that are much more about short – potential employment of short-range systems as well.
And so as we think about that broadening of a definition of strategic stability, I think we want to work closely with allies and partners to make sure we don’t define or – define our ways and that’s important to them or fail to take account of their interests.
MR. PAVEL: I see.
MR. STEIN: I have a little to add to what Jim said. Other than to echo the part on cyber, I think that we really have to think about cyber as at least a semi-existential threat. We have been essentially 100 percent unsuccessful in deterring China in the use of cyber in terms of stealing IP, trillions of dollars of IP. We will clearly be less successful, should we ever get into a situation where they are shutting down all kinds of things in a country. And to me, that says that we need a discussion, first amongst ourselves. I don’t know if you had it Jim or not, when you were in the building. But I think a healthy conversation with ourselves as to what is the role of cyber in achieving a new kind of strategic balance, and once we decide what that policy is, to engage much of the rest of the world in that. Again, I think it’s just crying for attention.
MR. PAVEL: I think with that, we can open it up to questions from the audience. And I have a lady in the back there.
Q: My name is Alicia Drossman (sp). I’m an independent researcher. This question is actually perhaps for further than 15 years down the road. I was interested in what is the possibility of developing a missile transfer control regime for Boost-Glide technology or technology for hypersonic glide vehicles acknowledging the limits of the Hague Code and missile transfer control regime that happened – prevented key transfers of ballistic missile tech in the past. But just developing some policy here that could perhaps regulate the advance of technology. Thank you, gentlemen.
MR. PAVEL: Very specific question. I don’t know if anyone has –
MR. MILLER: I guess it’s the former policy guy. I’ll take the first cut at that. So first of all, the basic technology of ballistic missiles, as you indicated, is dealt with – not just through the Hague Code of Conduct, but through the Missile Technology Control Regime and its various elements as well. And I would interpret your question as asking could you add to that limitations on Boost Glide technology that would then attempt to force countries, presumably including large states, as well as smaller states, to stick with ballistic technology and not go towards Boost Glide.
I can imagine that in theory, but at this point I’m not seeing the strategic rationale for doing that. And I think that the verification that’s associated with it, notwithstanding the ability to monitor launches, would be very challenging. So I don’t think it’s beyond the scope of missile technology control, but at this point, I could hear views either in follow on or afterwards, while understanding that we have to come to a good, not just unilateral, but multilateral understanding about what it means when these systems are employed and what types of warheads would be put on them. For example, if – it’s a different situation if Boost Glide is applied to a nuclear system, than if it’s known to be non-nuclear, in terms of the stability we’re talking about earlier.
But from my perspective, I’m not seeing the a priori case for a separate consideration. I’d be glad to follow up afterwards.
MR. WILKENING: I think MTCR, Missile Technology Control Regime’s been a useful vehicle and certainly hasn’t prevented the spread of missile technology. Applying that to Boost Glide as a practical matter, I don’t see the incentives on the Russian or Chinese side to enter into any constraints on it because they see this technology as a counter terror missile defense system. So one could propose regimes to try to do it. I think if anything the U.S. is probably less interested in that technology than the other two major actors. But even the U.S. is clearly pursuing it, as prompt global strike, for various reasons. And so I don’t see a lot of enthusiasm for trying to constraint this technology.
MR. PAVEL: Just very quickly, how much will the advent of 3D printing make the proliferation of systems we’re concerned about a much greater challenge – ballistic missiles, cruise missiles? How much will sort of sending these designs over the Internet and the ability to produce them in more places, have any of you sort of noted any concerns? Would this make missile defenses even more – even more urgent?
MR. STEIN: I think it’s got the potential to marginally drive down the cost of some components of missile defense, but turn around and look behind you, and think of the printer that’s going to print that behind you, et cetera. Again, I think it’s a – in other areas, it will be revolutionary. I think here a few components can be made that can be a lot cheaper, a lot quicker, but the basic systems –
MR. WILKENING: If I could add, 3D printing is a very cool technology for economic reasons. It tends to make very small gadgets that otherwise you could not make with conventional manufacturing techniques. But as Bob just mentioned, if you look at the components of a ballistic missile or, for that matter, a missile defense interceptor, the rocket body, the fuel, the pumps, maybe some of the components in a pump, but there’s not a lot of application to this class of technologies to ballistic missiles or missile defense interceptors for that matter.
MR. PAVEL: A question from Ian Brzezinski.
Q: Thank you. Ian Brzezinski from the Atlantic Council. Over lunch, we had three former Missile Defense directors up here, who gave, not surprisingly, a very positive assessment of the way the government through the Missile Defense Agency has been able to prompt support, if not accelerate, the development of technologies that culminated in missile defense capabilities we have today.
You all are in different positions, which have governmental and industrial experience. How do you assess MDA’s progress over the last decade, so to speak? Are there ways and things that could be done to make it more effective in developing, not just evolutionary technology that could change the missile defense, but revolutionary change in missile defense?
MR. MILLER: Let me just say as a bit of a joke, I guess, although there’s seriousness to it. I’m glad we haven’t changed the name for a while – (laughter) – because I think that’s a waste of energy. I had fairly extensive involvement, over my five years in government, with the Missile Defense Agency, largely with General O’Reilly at the helm. And I think I saw, not just every year and every cycle, but almost every moment he and his team having to make critically important judgments about what’s the most cost-effective, where would things would pay off, and then explain them not just within the Department of Defense, but to the Congress as well.
And I know that for any given portfolio of choices, there will always be, not just one person with a different view, but multiple people with different views on where the relative balance should be between near term, long term, between national missile defense and theater missile defense, how far to lean into allied and partner capability, which I push hard, and General O’Reilly was a great partner in that.
But I want to just give a very positive view. I think it’s an incredibly challenging mission for the reasons that have been referred to today. And I think it’s been under very solid stewardship.
MR. STEIN: I’d just echo those comments. I think the MDA of the last 10 or 15 years is radically different than the missile defense work that was going on before that. There’s a certain maturation that took place, both in the organization, that led to maturation of the products. We got serious about producing real things, getting them in the field, having people trained to actually use them, kind of getting out of the wonder world of the grand experiment, enough of that going on, to further the advanced things, but serious things getting into the field. So I too would take my hat off to that evolution of the last 10 to 15 years of the Missile Defense Agency.
MR. MILLER: Very quickly, I’d indicate that I haven’t told General O’Reilly about before, but I and other senior officials got exactly the same timeline of notification about tests that succeeded as tests that failed – to put it the other way, test that filed as tests that succeeded. And that openness and that understanding that that is the way to operate and it’s a way to improve, to have that openness within the department and with Congress and American people I think is incredibly important.
MR. PAVEL: Great. A question in the back, the gentleman in the blue shirt.
Q: Tom Collina, Arms Control Association. A question for Jim Miller. Hi Jim, how are you? I want to ask you about one of the many decisions you made while on the inside to see if you have any – other perspective on it now that you’re on the outside. Last March, the Pentagon decided to deploy the 14 additional CE-2s in Alaska if the next test hits, which we’re expecting sometime very soon. Since that decision was taken, last March, two things have happened. One is the July test of the CE-1 failed. And that led to a decision by the MDA to redesign the kill vehicle, which has now been firmly embrace by MDA, the Pentagon, Congress, it’s one of few things that seems to have widespread bipartisan support, redesign the kill vehicle.
So those two things, the failure of the July test and now this effort to redesign the kill vehicle, do those, in your mind, in any way, change the decision to go ahead with the 14 additional CE-2s? It’s one thing for the next test to lead to fixing the 10 that are deployed. But does it change your thoughts about deploying 14 additional CE-2s, now that we know about the unreliability of the system and that we’re working on a better system to follow up? Thank you.
MR. MILLER: No. And to elaborate just a little bit, you have both a quantitative and a qualitative set of issues. As we saw the threat from North Korea advancing, with a lot of uncertainty still about both numbers and quality of the KN-08 and TD-2, but more to the point that KN-08, as we looked at that hedge that we had consciously put in place and Under Secretary Gates said that his recommendation to the president, if you didn’t act to – began to move forward on that hedge, to go from 30 to 44 back to the prior plan essentially in terms of numbers, then there was no prospect of making it by 2017.
And from my perspective, given that we had it within our wherewithal to grow within that timeframe from 30 to 44, that it was a relatively modest cost, that it wouldn’t affect strategic stability. And at the same time, that our other mechanism that we had plan previously for dealing with a potential threat to the homeland, the SM-32B interceptor, slipped to the right, not because of challenges so much in its development, but because of challenges to getting it funded on Capitol Hill.
The combination of those, to me, indicated and still indicates that going forward on the quantitative side, that that modest but important step was very sensible. And on the qualitative side, yes, the MDA and indeed the nation need to deal with the quality issues and I think, as Bob referred to it, deal with EKV, and have a technical approach that works. If that ends up working within that timeline to 2017, that’s great. If it moves a little bit to the right, it doesn’t mean that other investment to get everything else in place was incorrect in my view.
MR. PAVEL: Dean Wilkening.
MR. WILKENING: So let me just add a footnote. I think it’s very easy to say in retrospect we should have been redesigning the EKV four to six years ago. And then we’d be in much better situation. It’s also easy to say, geez, why don’t we just stop now and do the EK redesign and then deploy that system as opposed to CE-2? That would be a perfectly reasonable strategy if there was no palpable sense of a threat.
And I think where people differ on this and where Jim has just articulated is there is a sense that the North Korean threat was emerging, perhaps faster than some thought, perhaps was becoming more serious than some people thought, and so I think senior decision makers did not have the luxury to say, well, let’s just look at this as how can we get the best system by 2025. Let’s not deploy CE-2. Let’s just go with an EK redesign. Because they wanted something in the field, a more substantial system in the field by 2017. ]
If you take that – a threat into account, the uncertainties, and the fact that as a senior decision maker you have responsibility for making these decision, then I think the decision that was made is perfectly reasonable.
MR. PAVEL: Let me take a couple of questions at once. We have this gentleman in the middle. We’ll collect two and then turn to the panelists.
Q: Thank you, Mike Elleman from IISS. I guess it’s a simple question. What is the pacing technology for the evolution of more reliable, effective missile defenses? Is it sensor technology, kill vehicle, boost capability, computing power? I’d just like to get some thoughts on that.
MR. PAVEL: Thanks. Then, let’s go to the gentleman in the blue, right there, yeah.
Q: Hi. Sydney Freedberg from BreakingDefense.com. Having heard a lot optimism on lasers and railguns for the Navy, in particular, although, of course, they’re not talking about a national defense system of those, I’m very interested in people to elaborate on their relative pessimism on those having a fundamental impact, perhaps a marginal impact as point defense. And conversely, the mention of hypersonics and Boost Glide systems, you know, how that could change, both the offensive potentials, as you say Russia and China are looking at, but also whether they could have a defensive application as well.
MR. PAVEL: Great. So the first question, what’s the pacing technology across the architecture.
MR. WILKENING: It’s sensors and command and control, integrating that stuff together. That’s the pacing technology. It’s going to make the stuff much more effective.
MR. STEIN: I would simply add to that, exo-atmospheric discrimination. It’s a tough job and I think we’ve done very well with it. We still have a ways to go. So I would also throw that into the hopper as an issue.
MR. PAVEL: And then the second question was the question I had, why the pessimism on all this cool, new stuff?
MR. STEIN: It’s not pessimism. It’s realism. (Laughter.)
MR. WILKENING: Yeah, these are great technologies, but they tend to be short-range. Let’s take railguns. Railguns have a lethal range measured in kilometers that I can count on one hand, maybe two. So I cannot defend the Continental United States with a railgun. Or if you think you can, you’d better be – I’m sorry.
Q: Navy’s talking about 100-kilometer range.
MR. PAVEL: The Navy’s talking about 100-kilometer range, he said.
MR. WILKENING: I am not aware of a technology that has that range. But let’s put it this way. A 50-caliber machine gun is a great boost phase technology if I can get within a kilometer or less of a ICBM launch site. So kinetic projectiles, if I can get close enough, I can knock them down. That’s the problem. I can’t get close enough. For terminal defense, where that threat’s coming at you, great application.
Same is true, I think for lasers. They have relatively limited range. Here it’s not in the single digits, but double, hundreds of kilometers perhaps. I still have to get fairly close. And so they don’t work very well for midcourse because a laser is not very effective against the hardened aeroshell of a Reentry Vehicle, but boost phase and terminal, I might be able to do something.
Boost phase, I got to get close. And so then you start thinking of how do I get close. Well, people put it in space, can’t get close enough. Airborne platforms, maybe, airborne laser, there was an attempt to do that, but you’ve got to worry about the air defenses that the adversary puts up. So bottom line with lasers for boost phase defense, with the current and for the technology I can see for the next decade or so, you can’t get close enough to have this be an operationally effective system.
Terminal defense, threats coming at you with a laser, now I can start doing some interesting things. Certainly if it’s conventional, let’s call it an anti-ship ballistic missile. It’s got seekers on it. It’s trying to do things to find me. I can use my laser against his seeker and burn it out, for example. Oh, that’ll defeat a terminally homing conventional anti-ship ballistic missile.
So I can see interesting, what I call niche applications, and I think we will see those evolve in the next couple of decades. But for homeland defense, for defense of Europe, for defense of Japan, broad area defense, I don’t see anything that is going to provide that capability, except for midcourse intercept, and then you’ve got to work the sensors, the command and control. You’ve got to work the midcourse decoy problem, which is a sensor and a software algorithm issue. I am not pessimistic about being able to solve that, at least with respect to the North Koreas and the Irans of the world. So I think that’s the way to go.
So it’s not pessimism. It’s realism, but it’s not for broad area defense.
MR. MILLER: Barry, could I just add, in case my earlier comments were misinterpreted as putting me in this uber-optimistic case. First, I would defer to these technological wizards, Dean and Bob. But second, based on my degree of knowledge, I see no evidence to suggest that in the 2030 timeframe we’re going to get to something that would allow national capabilities with either railgun or directed energy, but point defenses will be valuable.
But what happens, as you think about the implications for strategic stability is two kinds of filters are applied. The first one says, well, if I’m Russian or a Chinese or if I’m the United States looking at their capabilities, I’ve got to think about not just what they had today, but what they might have in 15 years. And so I’d be projecting forward.
And second, there’s a degree of uncertainty associated with what’s present today as well. And so it means that even as we see the potential early deployments for tactical uses of these systems, that we need to be thinking about their implications and the perceptions of our allies and partners and of Russia and China as well for strategic stability.
MR. PAVEL: We have time for one more question. Yes, right there.
Q: Richard Weitz, Hudson Institute. I see twin dynamics at work and I’m unclear which one might emerge dominant. And this relates to what President Obama said earlier today about U.S. need to work in coalitions. On the one hand, I see us taking off and really exceeding the capabilities of allies and partners in many of these areas.
On the other hand, these technologies might make it easier to promote integration of sensors and so on. So I wasn’t sure what the panel thought, where the balance might lie. Is this going to improve our ability to work with partners and coalitions? Or is it going to make the U.S., as often occurs in other domains, in a different realm altogether, making it – if anything, it would apply – seek partners just for political cover, as we pretty much do our own thing?
MR. MILLER: Richard, I’ll reply. I suggested, as I think in my remarks, and that is that we have tremendous opportunities for cooperation today on missile defense, as in other areas, and we move forward, whether it’s European Phased Adaptive Approach working in the Asia-Pacific with Japan and South Korea in particular, or working in the Middle East with Israel, with the Gulf Cooperation Council states. Those – I think technology will help us find new opportunities, new specific opportunities. And it is imperative for our national security interest that we do so. And in order to do that, as I said in my remarks, we’ve really got to change the model that we currently have for export control and for technology security and foreign disclosure.
We’ve got to make it so that our allies and partners cannot just plug in more effectively, but can get involved in the development process and get involved in coproduction in a way that is much more substantial than it typically has been in the past. We are not going to keep the technological edge by overprotecting. There are some key technologies. There is a small number of so-called crown jewels. But we’re going to be able to protect that technological edge by partnering with our allies and partners and by innovating more rapidly. That is a much more promising path. It applies to missile defense as in other areas.
MR. STEIN: Let me add one thing to that. It was interesting. When Ash Carter came into office, one of the things that he said he was going to accomplish, he was going to change the whole ITAR situation because, in his words it was not clear, in my words it was quite clear, I thought, that our holding on to our own technology and by definition holding out other people’s technology was now starting to work against us, rather than for us. And he saw that clearly. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to do much about it, even in the position that he was in. But I think it’s another area that really needs to change pretty fundamentally. We don’t own technology anymore. And there’s good stuff out there that our regimes are working against us and we really need to rethink that. So how come you failed at that, Jim?
MR. MILLER: Bob, I actually spent a lot of time on that. And Secretary Gates was really if not the – a predominant impetus to moving forward on export control reform. And in fact, we did migrate – the good news is we migrated thousands of items off of the U.S. munitions list and to the CCL, which is run by the Commerce Department. And that we then identified, if I remember right, 36 countries who were Strategic Trade Authorization partners, where we could just have a presumptive okay for moving that technology.
That’s the good news, that the remaining work is that only touched, in a sense, the low hanging fruit, and didn’t get to the center of the issue where real technology sharing is what our allies and partners want and what we’ve got to be able to provide as we go forward.
MR. WILKENING: I would just add a footnote. I think one of the interesting things about missile defense is it can perform a very interesting role for alliance cohesion and joint development, unlike the strategic technology of the Cold War, namely nuclear weapons. Those were truly crown jewels. You could not share much at all of the technology. At best, you could have basing rights in other countries, and that was the form of sharing. But here, you can do a lot in terms of joint development, the sensors, the focal plane arrays, the radars, the interceptors. And so I think it’s a much richer set of technologies that you can use for joint development, alliance cohesion, alliance integration, joint exercises with these systems, and the like. So I would certainly echo what both Jim and Bob said.
MR. PAVEL: Great. This has been a really excellent discussion. I learned so much that I’ve learned that I know even less than I thought I knew, if that makes sense. But please join me in thanking our panelists for a really fantastic – (inaudible, applause). (Applause.)