Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. Military Space News .

Subscribe to our free daily newsletters

Obama team urges Polish patience on shield

US Defense Secretary Robert Gates.
by Staff Writers
Krakow (AFP) Feb 19, 2009
The United States urged Poland Thursday to be patient over a missile defence deal it inked with Washington while President Barack Obama's team reviews the controversial multi-billion dollar shield.

"What I told the defense minister today is that they have to give us a little more time to review these things," US Defense Secretary Robert Gates said at a NATO meeting in Krakow, southern Poland.

Gates said no final decision on the shield, which has enraged Russia, has yet been made.

"Between the economic crisis, Afghanistan and Iraq the administration has not yet reviewed where it is on a whole range of issues including relationships with our allies, the missile defense program, the relationship with the Russians."

Former president George W. Bush launched plans to extend the US missile shield into Europe, basing 10 interceptors in Poland linked to a radar in the Czech Republic to counter any threat from "rogue states," primarily Iran.

But Obama's administration has begun a review of the project's costs and technical feasibility, a move which has eased fears in Russia that the shield was aimed at it.

Polish Defence Minister Bogdan Klich said talks with Washington on implementing the deal, and in particular the stationing of US Patriot missiles in Poland, were ongoing.

"We must be patient and wait until the new administration in Washington will end the ongoing review and we will receive a clearer and forward looking position," Klich said after talks with Gates.

"I reminded him (Gates) that the agreements that were signed last year should be implemented," Klich told AFP after the meeting.

Klich however said talks at deputy ministerial level on technical aspects of the controversial US plan -- the benefits Poland stood to gain from the deal -- "are on track."

The minister told AFP there was no delay "on the topic of the SOFA (Status of Forces Agreement) supplemental agreement; we are speaking about implementation deals on the (missile) base agreement and the topic of locating American Patriot missiles in Poland."

Earlier Thursday Gates reiterated the Obama administration's position on the missile shield.

"We are concerned about the Iranian missile threat and as long as that threat exists we will continue to pursue missile defense, as long as we know it will work and as long as it is cost effective.

"But we will pursue it not only with our NATO allies but also with the Russians."

The August 14, 2008 missile defence deal inked by Washington and Warsaw sparked outrage in Moscow which threatened to aim its own missiles at the planned US installations in Europe.

Washington had wanted the Polish and Czech installations up and running by 2011-2013, to complete its system already in place in the United States, Greenland and Britain.

Washington insists the shield -- endorsed by NATO at it's February 2008 summit -- is in no way aimed at Russia.

The United States warns that Iran could develop long-range missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads by 2015-2017.

Quoted by the Czech CTK agency in Washington earlier this month, Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg suggested the Czech radar facility was likely to be delayed for three years while the Obama review was conducted.

"Czechs will fully understand it if the US administration puts off the construction of the radar base by three years. We will not be basically opposed to this," Schwarzenberg said.

Missile defence is expected to figure high on the agenda of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin during a planned visit to Poland in the next few months, his first in seven years.

In late January, Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk said he was confident Russia would freeze a move to deploy missiles in the Kaliningrad region, on Warsaw's doorstep, in retaliation for the US deployment in Poland.

Share This Article With Planet Earth DiggDigg RedditReddit
YahooMyWebYahooMyWeb GoogleGoogle FacebookFacebook

Related Links
Learn about missile defense at
Learn about nuclear weapons doctrine and defense at
All about missiles at
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Does Missile Defense Discourage Nuclear Proliferation Part 14
Washington (UPI) Feb 18, 2009
The absence of effective defenses against small attacks employing ballistic missiles increases the incentives for additional countries to acquire such weapons. Thus, a strong case can be made that building modest missile defenses for the United States strengthens deterrence and discourages nuclear proliferation.

  • Clinton hopes to build on solid Sino-US foundation
  • Clinton sees new role for Indonesia in US 'smart power'
  • Analysis: What Germany is all about today
  • US-Chinese military dialogue set to resume this month

  • Nuclear test site seeks world heritage status
  • NKorean disarmament stalled by possible succession: Clinton
  • IAEA finds graphite, uranium traces at suspect Syrian site
  • Iran slowing uranium enrichment: IAEA

  • Boeing SLAM ER Scores Direct Hit In Land-Based Moving Target Test
  • Kremlin Intrigue And The Closure Of Kyrgyzstan Air Base
  • Iranian defence minister in Russia on missile quest
  • Sea Viper Shows Its Fangs

  • Obama team urges Polish patience on shield
  • Does Missile Defense Discourage Nuclear Proliferation Part 14
  • The Missile Defense Reality Check Part 13
  • Raytheon's JLENS Passes Key Milestone

  • Major airlines call for climate deal to include aviation
  • Swiss aircraft firm to cut jobs in Ireland
  • Bank of China extends massive credit to state aircraft maker
  • Shanghai Airlines seeks capital injection

  • MoD Police Try Out UAV
  • US drones are based in Pakistan: senator
  • AeroVironment Launches Production Of Its New Digital Data Link
  • Commentary: 'Wired for War'

  • Analysis: Boredom now U.S. troops' enemy
  • Iraq invites Saddam's soldiers to come home
  • Outside View: Strange Shiite bedfellows
  • Dogs of War: Covering contractors

  • Further Interest In Australian Made Bushmaster
  • When Pigs Fly...With Ospreys
  • Raytheon Awarded Contract For Marine Corps Enhanced Thermal Imaging Program
  • Raytheon Wins Contract To Develop Next-Gen Jammer Technology

  • The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2007 - SpaceDaily.AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement