News



DATE=4/30/98
TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
NUMBER=2-230546
TITLE=BALLISTIC MISSILE CONTRACT (S)
BYLINE=JIM RANDLE
DATELINE=PENTAGON
CONTENT=
VOICED AT: 

INTRO:  PENTAGON OFFICIALS SAY THEY ARE TAKING A BIG STEP TOWARD 
DEFENDING ALL 50 AMERICAN STATES FROM A BALLISTIC MISSILE ATTACK.
THURSDAY, THE U-S DEFENSE DEPARTMENT AWARDED A KEY CONTRACT FOR 
DEVELOPING THE COMPLEX COMPUTER PROGRAMS AND HARDWARE THAT COULD 
SEND 100 ANTI-MISSILE MISSILES ROARING INTO THE SKY TO DESTROY 
WARHEADS BOUND FOR AMERICAN CITIES.  V-O-A'S JIM RANDLE REPORTS, 
THE BOEING COMPANY WON THE COMPETITION FOR THE CONTRACT.

TEXT:  THE TASK OF HITTING AND DESTROYING INCOMING BALLISTIC 
MISSILE WARHEADS IS COMPLEX, DIFFICULT AND EXPENSIVE.  PENTAGON 
OFFICIALS SAY IT IS SORT OF LIKE TRYING TO HIT A BULLET WITH 
ANOTHER BULLET. 

THURSDAY'S ONE-POINT-SIX BILLION DOLLAR INITIAL CONTRACT IS FOR 
JUST ONE KEY PART OF THE TASK, CALLED "SYSTEMS INTEGRATION." 
THAT'S PENTAGON LANGUAGE FOR GETTING THE RADARS AND OTHER 
SENSORS, COMMUNICATIONS EQUIPMENT, COMPUTERS, ANTI-MISSILE 
MISSILES AND OTHER GEAR, TO WORK TOGETHER SMOOTHLY.

THE HEAD OF THE BALLISTIC MISSILE DEFENSE ORGANIZATION, 
LIEUTENANT GENERAL LESTER LYLES, SAYS THIS SYSTEM IS SUPPOSED TO 
PROTECT THE UNITED STATES FROM A LIMITED MISSILE ATTACK, THE SORT
THAT MIGHT BE LAUNCHED INTENTIONALLY BY A ROGUE STATE, OR 
ACCIDENTALLY BY A MAJOR POWER.

HE SAYS THERE WILL BE THREE YEARS OF DEVELOPMENT WORK BEFORE 
THERE IS A DECISION ON WHETHER OR  NOT  TO BUILD AND DEPLOY THE 
SYSTEM.  ENGINEERS SAY, IF A DECISION IS MADE TO DEPLOY THE 
SYSTEM, IT WILL TAKE THREE MORE YEARS TO GET IT BUILT AND 
WORKING. (SIGNED)

NEB/JR/ENE/JO

30-Apr-98 6:13 PM EDT (2213 UTC)
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Source: Voice of America
.