May 21st, 2012
05:27 AM ET

Interim missile defense shield now in place to protect Europe, NATO chief says

(CNN) - NATO's chief says the alliance now has interim ballistic missile defense capability in Europe, a move that is likely to further heighten tensions with Russia over its objection to a missile defense shield.

"It is the first step towards our long-term goal of providing full coverage and protection for all NATO European populations, territory and forces," Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen told reporters Sunday, the first day of a two-day NATO summit in Chicago.

Among the so-called interim capabilities are missile interceptors loaded on a U.S. ship in the Mediterranean, the first of four anticipated warships with the defense system, Rasmussen said. A defense radar is also operational in Turkey, he said.

NATO has asked Russia to participate in the system but negotiations have been deadlocked over Russia's demand for a legally binding treaty guaranteeing the shield would not be used as a deterrent to Moscow's own systems.

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soundoff (18 Responses)
  1. Andreas Moser

    I feel much safer now.

    May 21, 2012 at 5:33 am | Report abuse |
  2. ♚Mmmmm♛

    ...and whom or what europe is protecting itself against?

    May 21, 2012 at 6:30 am | Report abuse |
  3. Missy

    Why would Russia oppose a defense system? Logic would follow they may be up to something in the future.
    Of course the general concensus on Iran is they are in the midst of that *something*.

    May 21, 2012 at 7:02 am | Report abuse |
  4. Herr Oberst

    Dismantle the defensive shield. Obama has made promises to Putin he is honor-bound to keep.

    You want to see a bunch of european generals crap their trousers, sit Obama on stage with Medvedev and a microphone turned on – the open mic gaffe – "Wait until I win the re election, then I will have more flexibility [To unilaterally disarm America making her weak and vulnerable. Oh, by the way, can I wash your car, too?"]

    May 21, 2012 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Pete

      @HerrOberst,Obamas defense plan is not only land based but also mobile with missile equipped ships.Missile designers are in the developement stages of designing a missile that has the capibilities to strike targets at their launch sites,giving them a higher intercept ratio than in mid flight when missiles would be at maximum speeds,and have a lesser chance of interception.Pres.Obamas missile experts explained of having to update the inefficent Bush missile defense plans only being land based,this covering only a small percentage to what's being the engineered coverage now..Putins engineers are requiring missile specs that are of compatible capabilities of NATOs own missile designs for futher review...And Russias not happy with missile bases in Soviet Georgia, their foes of late.Russia is also asking for missile limits and locals in its future pressuring against Iran and its emerging missile programs as prognosticated by US Intel reports..

      May 21, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. saywhat

    @ Missy
    This could be the other way around, no? And that hog wash on Iran doesn't wash anymore.
    We have been successful in creating enemies and turning entire regions hostile to us and can hardly afford to continue isolating ourselves.

    May 21, 2012 at 9:49 am | Report abuse |
  6. saywhat

    @ Herr Oberst
    Sure our policies in the past decade have made us stronger. lol

    May 21, 2012 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
  7. Missy

    @ saywhat Yes, very well could be.
    Iran doesn't give beans about the worlds view on their nuclear program, or anything else they may have interests in for that matter.
    I would venture to guess those enemies are ours because we have been so successful in invading (getting in between two kids fighting) and occupying so many countries that they respond just as teenagers do ... "Butt out, gosh you think you know everything Mom"
    Btw, what does washing hogs have to do with anything?

    May 21, 2012 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  8. saywhat

    @ Missy

    The whole Iranian bruhaha is hogwash if one listens carefully to what our own defense experts, DOD and spy agencies have been saying all along. Its hogwash if one listens to the whole security apparatus, thinkers, intellectuals and academics of the country where the rulers driven by twisted ideology and agenda want us awash in that hogwash – Israel.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  9. saywhat

    And of course our invasion and occupation of Iraq & Afghanistan is not getting in between " two kids fighting", that permit to say is absolutely off the mark.
    Much has been written and said about our motives, needless to go into that all over again.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Missy

      Ok, so the Iranian thingy is hogwash. But I say with all the wars we've been in, it goes "alot" deeper than what security apparatus and media tells us.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
  10. joebob

    This is exactly why Marijuana should be legal, remove the money from the cartels, grow it here legally better to have that $3.6 million out of the hands of the cartels and in the hands of tax paying US citizens.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
  11. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "Right Wing Insanity"

    Iran. The boy that cried wolf? Or just another cooperation game?

    May 21, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "Right Wing Insanity"

    Interim defense shield? Considering Italy, since there last quake, is in ruins. And Greece with it's collapsed economy. That's kinda like setting up an ABM to gaurd a junkyard (pitbull wasn't enough).

    May 21, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "Right Wing Insanity"

    So why isn't an interim defense shield offered to the North Koreans, so they don't hurt themselves.

    May 21, 2012 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  14. chrissy

    lol @ jeff, leave it to you! Thank you for that laugh. As for the commentor above who thinks OBAMA gets to make ANY major decisions on his own, you are very much mistaken. And Americans would do well to remember when voting time comes, CONGRESS decides.

    May 21, 2012 at 6:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • mickey1313

      agreed, and as long as the gop has power in congress the war machine " defence" spending will grow and grow.

      May 22, 2012 at 2:55 am | Report abuse |
  15. JerseyJeff

    This system could never handle a Russian MERV ICBM. It's insane that Russia is so reluctant to take part.

    I think this system is a way to bridge the conservative and the progressive into both moving toward nuclear disarmament, even unilateral disarmament by the United States. First, to a couple hundred and then much later near none. We cannot try to control nuclear proliferation with MAD with multiple armed states and continue to tell states with any credibility to not pursue nuclear military capabilities. The shield also draws some key nations closer to the West and NATO with the security of having these facilities and the presence of NATO force to guarantee security from the "boogie man" and neighborhood bully, Russia.

    May 22, 2012 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |