- - Thursday, August 20, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

President Obama’s deal with Iran is a risk, and it’s no surprise that people of good faith disagree on its prospects for success (“U.S. acquiescence to a bad Iran deal was no mistake,” Web., Aug. 11). But instead of manning the barricades in our typical scorched-earth politics, I would urge the president’s critics to support more constructive steps — such as working to build up the ballistic-missile defenses we will need if the president’s deal should fail.

Our Ground Based Mid-Course Defense homeland missile system has proven in nine successful tests that it can stop an intercontinental ballistic missile fired by a rogue state such Iran. But the system needs technology upgrades, associated tests and advanced sensors, including ones in space. We also need additional defenses against ballistic missiles launched from vessels off our coasts.

Those who worry the president’s deal won’t stop Iran from getting a nuclear bomb should support the strong defenses we will need if they are right.

AMBASSADOR HENRY F. COOPER

Former director, Strategic Defense Initiative

Alexandria

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