Should U.S. Walk Away From 1987 INF Treaty?
Mark Gunzinger of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) has no qualms about walking away. China, North Korea, Iran, Pakistan, India and Saudi Arabia possess various types of ballistic missiles with ranges of 500-5,500 km; some also have ground-launched cruise missiles. War-game exercises supported by the CSBA show the precarious situation of NATO members Poland, Lithuania and Latvia. These countries are bracketed by compliant, offensive Russian weaponry based in Kalingrad, Belarus and along Moscow’s border, says Gunzinger. He says future ground-based strike systems could help the U.S. suppress Russia’s advanced integrated air defense systems and freedom of action in the event of a conflict. Those same weapons could also help the Pentagon overcome some of the military roadblocks put up by China and North Korea in the Western Pacific. China has fielded many types of conventional and nuclear medium-range missiles to restrict U.S. forces, and it appears that some of those missiles have recently been emplaced in silos in the South China Sea.