Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. Military Space News .

Subscribe to our free daily newsletters

US cutting operations at main Pacific missile testing range

by Staff Writers
Majuro (AFP) March 6, 2008
The cost of military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan are forcing the US to cut back operations at its Pacific missile testing range in the Marshall Islands, the range commander said Thursday.

"The global war on terror in Iraq and Afghanistan costs money and it has to come from somewhere," said Reagan Test Site commander, Colonel Stevenson Reed.

"We're not immune," Reed said after briefing Marshall Islands President Litokwa Tomeing in the Marshall Islands capital Majuro.

About six million US dollars will be cut from the 250 million dollar annual budget this year, meaning lay-offs for more than seven percent of its American and Marshall Islands workforce.

The missile range at Kwajalein atoll has been the testing ground for every US missile and anti-missile defense system since it was first established in the mid-1960s.

The US pays Kwajalein landowners more than 15 million dollars annually to rent islands in this boomerang-shaped necklace of low-lying coral islands that are dotted with radar, high speed infrared cameras and missile launch pads.

The range is going through a four-year transformation period, during which it will cut about six million dollars from its budget annually.

Last year, the US army started shifting some range operations and personnel to its Space and Missile Defense Command in Huntsville, Alabama.

The planned installation of a deep sea fibre optic communications cable by 2010 will allow some range operations to be will be run remotely, cutting costs for US Defense Department contractors and other branches of the military that use Kwajalein, Reed said.

Tony deBrum, foreign minister of the Marshall Islands, a former US territory in the Western Pacific, expressed dismay at the sudden announcement of the cutbacks.

About 12,000 islanders who live crowded on the tiny island of Ebeye, which has been described as the "slum of the Pacific", depend heavily on the salaries of the 1,125 Marshall Islanders who work at the nearby missile base.

Up to 100 are expected to lose their jobs this year, while 64 American jobs will also be lost.

"There is no doubt that the reduction in the Marshall Islands workforce at Kwajalein over the next four years will have immediate impact on families of the employees who will be laid off," deBrum said.

DeBrum said he was "particularly dismayed" about the announcement by Reed because he was told by US Defense Department officials last year there would be no reduction in the workforce.

Email This Article
Comment On This Article

Related Links
Learn about missile defense at
All about missiles at

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

India, Israel to jointly develop anti-aircraft missiles
New Delhi (AFP) Feb 27, 2008
India will jointly build a surface-to-air missile with its second biggest weapons supplier Israel and hopes for such collaborations with other countries, the defence minister said Wednesday.

  • Germany Wants New Strategic Partnership With Russia
  • Taiwan boosts military spending amid China increase
  • China announces big rise in military spending, amid US tensions
  • Pentagon voices concern over China's military power

  • Iran Set For Showdown On Multiple Fronts
  • Experts evaluating nuclear blast detection system: CTBTO commission
  • Outside View: Concerts and nukes
  • North Korea Blames US For Impasse In Nuclear Talks

  • US cutting operations at main Pacific missile testing range
  • India, Israel to jointly develop anti-aircraft missiles
  • Pakistan says Indian missile test to trigger arms race: report
  • India test-fires sea-based nuclear-capable missile: ministry

  • BrahMos-2 Tests Mark Major Progress On Indian Cruise Missile
  • US confident of Europe missile deal soon: Fried
  • US offers Poland military plan for missile shield: ministry
  • US, Czech on cusp of missile shield deal

  • Northrop, EADS to invest 600 mln dlrs in Alabama site
  • China air passenger traffic up 16.8 percent in 2007: state media
  • Environmentalists climb on Heathrow jet in airport protest: officials
  • NASA opens a rotary wing research project

  • Global Hawk Marks 10-Year Anniversary
  • QinetiQ Selects Aonix PERC For Taranis UAV
  • Autonomous Technology Is Cool For CATS
  • Assembly Starts Of Taranis Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle

  • Iraq 'surge' downsizes as 2,000 US soldiers return home
  • US-Iraq pact won't tie Bush successor's hands: White House
  • Ex-Pentagon official settles scores in book on Iraq: report
  • Top US military officer opposes timetable for Iraq withdrawal

  • Singapore puts ammo under ground
  • Lockheed Martin Receives Contract To Demonstrate A C-RAM Interceptor System
  • Tank Warfare And Doctrine Part Six
  • URI Selected By DHS To Co-lead New Center Of Excellence For Explosives Detection

  • 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