The Baltic Region

2016 Issue №1

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The US ballistic missile defence policy in the Baltic and Nordic regions

DOI
10.5922/2079-8555-2016-1-3
Pages
34-44

Abstract

This article examines the implications of the deployment of the US ballistic missile defense (BMD) system in the Baltic and Nordic regions. These implications are to be considered to ensure Russia’s military security. Using the structural-functional method, the authors analyse the internal structure of the US BMD in Europe, stages of its implementation, and its influence on the military equilibrium in the region. Being similar to other regional missile defence systems of the Pentagon, BMD in Europe increases the offensive capabilities of the US armed forces and its allies and in doing so, it stops performing a purely defensive mission declared by Washington. It is stressed that the deployment of mobile sea- and land-based BMD elements in the Baltic Sea region and Nordic countries will inevitably destabilize the strategic situation and may lead to a new round of arms race in the region. The efficacy of BMD in Europe is evaluated from the perspective of military technology. The system’s potential threats to Russia’s military security and its armed forces are assessed. The article considers measures to enhance national security that could be taken by Russia provided the US plans to deploy BMD in Europe are fully implemented.

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