From the Wash Post:
Air Force Lt. Gen. Henry A. “Trey” Obering III, director of the Missile Defense Agency, said yesterday that he thinks the U.S. military would have “a good chance” of shooting down a missile that threatened the United States with a system that “would be very capable” if it had to be used today. He said the military tried to mimic North Korea’s Taepodong-2 missile and intercepted the target even though the goal of the exercise was simply to gather data.
Last week, the WSJ ran a good profile of Obering:
What’s next? “In my mind, space-based interceptors [are] very attractive,” he says. To those who say that would mean the “weaponization” of space, the general has a ready answer. “We already do intercepts in space, because that’s where the missiles fly . . . What we’re talking about is having space-based interceptors that would engage from space.” Congress has authorized funding for some space experiments starting next year. …
Does he object to the term “Star Wars,” the mocking nickname given by Sen. Ted Kennedy to what was then known as the Strategic Defense Initiative? A big smile crosses his face. “Personally, I don’t. . . . When you look at what the ‘Star Wars’ movie was really about, I think it fits. . . . It was basically the force of good trying to address the force of evil.”
Yesterday’s intercept took place 100 miles above the earth — that’s outer space.