Tue, Jun 27, 2006
Agrees To US Deployment Of PAC-3s, Moves Up Planned Radar
In the latest
development over North Korea's threatened test of its Taepodong-2
long range ICBM, neighboring Japan has agreed to allow the United
States to deploy Patriot interceptor missiles on American bases by
the end of the year.
The agreement, reached this weekend, marks the first time the
two sides have reached an accord on placing batteries of Patriot
Advanced Capability-3 missiles on Japanese soil. The missiles are
designed to intercept ballistic missiles, cruise missiles or
aircraft... surely a matter on the minds of the Japanese lately, in
light of North Korea's recent saber-rattling.
In fact, Japan's Yomiuri Shimbun newspaper reports Tokyo and
Washington have also signed an agreement to expand their
cooperation on a joint ballistic missile defense shield, committing
themselves to joint production of interceptor missiles.
That's not all. The US is also reportedly moving up its planned
test of a missile-detecting radar system in northern Japan,
according to the Kyoto News agency. The test run of the
high-resolution X-Band radar system was initially scheduled to
begin weeks later... but was moved up after North Korea made moves
to launch the upgraded ICBM.
And speaking of the Taepodong-2... at this writing, the missile
is still on its launchpad on the country's northeastern coast,
attracting almost as much attention just sitting there as it would
if North Korea presses ahead with the launch... which, of course,
is exactly the point.
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