April 20, 1999
Current and Growing Missile Threats to the U.S.
Lilley, Hon. James R., former U.S. Ambassador to China, the
American Enterprise Institute, Washington, DC.................. 34
Prepared statement of........................................ 39
Schlesinger, Hon. James R., former Secretary of Defense, former
Secretary of Energy, and former Director of the U.S. Central
Intelligence Agency............................................ 15
Prepared statement of........................................ 18
Schneider, Hon. William, Jr., former Under Secretary of State for
Security Assistance, Science, and Technology, adjunct fellow,
Hudson Institute, Washington, DC............................... 26
Prepared statement of........................................ 31
Walpole, Robert D., National Intelligence Officer for Strategic
and Nuclear Programs, Center for Strategic and International
Studies, prepared statement.................................... 53
In 1950 in Korea, Chinese used surprise, overwhelming force
and favorable terrain to achieve remarkable victories over the
U.S. in the initial stages. Later, when faced with superior
weaponry and positional warfare China seriously compromised its
position and settled for half a loaf.
In the Taiwan Strait crises at Tachen, at Quemoy, and North
and South of Taiwan, the PRC achieved some success by bluff and
posturing at Tachen in 1954. In 1958, however, it retreated in
Quemoy when faced with U.S. naval power and a Taiwan Airforce
that shot their planes out of the sky. In 1995 and 1996 the PRC
discovered missiles as its most potent weapon of attack and
coercion, but it figured it needed 10 more years of build-up
and preparation. China also focused more on developing
asymmetrical warfare to deal with U.S. power. This meant to
disrupt U.S. command and control and intelligence systems
dependent on reconnaissance and communication satellites and
thus exploit U.S. vulnerabilities, not to confront its
In India in 1962, PRC demonstrated again that it could use
surprise, superior force and favorable terrain to decisively
defeat a weaker foe on its periphery over a matter of sovereign
In 1969, in contrast the PRC faced a superior force on its
northern and western borders in the Soviet Union. China was
driven at the time by the impassioned nationalism of the
Cultural Revolution. China was frequently defeated by the
Soviets in numerous border clashes, so it turned to its former
enemy, the U.S., to offset its weaknesses against the USSR and
to assure its survival against a more powerful enemy.
In January 1974, in a brilliant but limited amphibious
operation PRC seized the Paracel Islands in the mid South China
Sea. This was carefully planned and executed against South
Vietnamese units with perfect timing--the U.S. was pulling out
of Vietnam and the Soviets were not in yet. The South
Vietnamese were weak and unprepared. The Chinese have now just
expanded a major airstrip on these islands clearly aimed at
bolstering their position against the Spratlys further south.
In a preliminary test of military power on the sea, the Chinese
navy defeated the Vietnamese in the Spratlys in 1988. It is
currently building up the PLA's presence on Mischief Reef in
defiance of the weaker Philippines.
In 1979, the Chinese failed against Vietnam in a clumsily
executed land war. A hardened battle tested Vietnamese military
inflicted heavy casualties and the Chinese withdrew after
``delivering a message''. In a wake up call, the Chinese
discovered their army was lazy, fat, poorly trained, and their
use of command and control very poor.
What lessons emerge from this history is a China that tries to know
its strengths and its opponent's weaknesses. China can adjust quickly
when it faces superior forces and has a strong will. But it also moves
quickly and decisively when opportunities arise.
In the 1980s Chinese politics were given over to economic
development, the military was cut back so China could establish a
strong and growing economic base. The military emphasis was placed on
getting foreign military technology, one way or another, to build a
modern hi-tech military--this resulted in the massive transfers of
technology from the U.S. (including from Los Alamos as well as many
other acquisitions), from Europe and Japan. Beginning in 1991, a
massive transfer took place from the former Soviet Union which was both
vulnerable and broke but which had a huge military machine up for sale.
Desert Storm was also a wake-up call. Deng Xiaoping, the paramount
ruler, and his old colleague at the time Yang Shangkun watched the U.S.
performance on TV from Shanghai in February 1991. They were impressed,
as were their military leaders. The U.S. was both an opportunity and a
danger. China decided it was essential to get with the U.S. military--
to understand its revolution in military affairs, to study its
logistics, master its hi-tech war fighting capabilities, and to probe
its psychology of fighting. The PRC also recognized the need to deny
the U.S. access to forward-based facilities and to hold U.S. naval
power projection capabilities at risk. The PRC in the interim decided
it had to accept the sale of F-16s to Taiwan and would settle for a
poor deal on its longstanding FMS case left over from Tianamen
sanctions. The PRC was not ready to take on the U.S. and in fact in the
short term needed the U.S.
The U.S. leapt at the opportunity to re-engage China in a military
relationship and by 1994, the U.S. and China were setting up a cozy
collaboration with numerous exchanges covering many of the areas where
the Chinese needed our help. This reached an all-time high in 1999 when
the U.S. and China agreed on over 80 exchanges including logistics,
training, visits to air-drop exercises, U.S. nuclear submarines and
the role of missiles
It is against this backdrop, sckechily presented, that missile
politics can be viewed.
First, the Chinese see an ally in the anti-missile defense policies
of the Clinton Administration. An administrative cable sent as recently
as March 19 this year spells out how our diplomats should soft pedal
the TMD issue and even how the Administration is blocking its
development and deployment. In fact, since 1995 the Chinese have tried
to shape the debate here in the U.S. by focussing attention away from
its developments and deployment of missiles to the divisive aspects of
missile defenses where it has U.S. supporters.
Second, the PRC works with its supporters in the U.S. to drive home
the point that missile defense is a make-or-break issue in Sino-
American relations. The Chinese repeat that for the U.S. to work with
Japan and Taiwan to establish a missile defense system basically
undermines the premises of the new China-U.S. relationship established
in 1971-72 and reaffirmed by the 3 communiques signed between the two
countries. The Chinese describe this as an intolerable American
intervention which will not only increase the chances for Taiwan
independence, but will cause China to perfect and expand its own
In this explanation, the Chinese seem to ignore the fact that
Taiwan already has an anti-missile defense system in its advanced
Patriots (PAC 2) and that the PRC's own missiles and nuclear
modernization have proceeded rapidly without the existence of TMD, and
incidentally, with the assistance, sometimes open sometimes stolen, of
Third, the Chinese have taken direct aim at NMD and TMD by
insisting that the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM) be ``maintained
and strengthened,'' according to Sha Zukang, China's top arms control
and disarmament official. China has not signed the AMB but feels free
to comment on it. It is interesting to note that Sha's views were given
credibility by The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace which
widely distributed them in a February 1999 memorandum. It is clearly in
China's interest to use any means at its disposal to denude the U.S.
and its friends of defense against China's growing missile capability.
Sha claims China will be ``forced to develop more advanced offensive
missiles by TMD. This will give rise to a new round of the arms race.''
What Sha chooses to ignore is China is already building up and
deploying its missiles now while NMD and TMD are still only in the
testing stages. In this case, history is instructive. In 1981, the PRC
and its supporters in the U.S. ran a pre-emptive political strike to
block the sale of FX fighters for Taiwan, and despite Reagan's
election, this attempt worked largely because of well focused academic
and business support and numerous sympathizers among the American
bureaucrats. The lesson was, if the stakes are raised early, the
chances of blocking TMD will be improved.
The Chinese have also used the old Sunzi adage--``When capable
feign incapacity'' to lull the U.S. Even our Administration has picked
up on this. The Chinese say they have just a few long-range missiles,
and the U.S. has 7,000, so what is the problem? The U.S. could
overwhelm China in a flash. As Sunzi said, ``Use humility to make them
haughty.'' So the U.S. thus dismisses the Chinese threat as minimal.
President Clinton himself did this in his statement of April 7, 1999 in
which he said the nuclear balance is with us--the Chinese have only two
dozen weapons while we have 7,000. The PRC has also consistently
dissembled on its military budget, citing very low figures which do not
conform with reality, while still admitting to double digit growth but
from a factually inaccurate low base figure.
Underneath this soporific, the Chinese say the U.S. won't take
losses--the Chinese will, because this is a matter of their sacred
sovereignty. A nationalistic frenzy is in fact being whipped up
constantly in China on Taiwan as Chinese territory, and on U.S.
flagrant interference in Chinese internal affairs. The PRC is aware
that its own record of sacrificing its civilian population is well
documented. The Great Leap Forward of 1958-60 probably cost 30 million
Chinese lives to Chairman Mao's lunatic social engineering. Mao is
widely quoted as saying China could afford to lose 300 million people
in a war with Russia.
There is also a parallel here to Kosovo. The U.S. has ruled out the
use of ground forces early on and telegraphed this to Milosevic. He
took heart and moved decisively against the Albanians. If we rule out
TMD for Taiwan early on, the Chinese will also take heart and will note
that the chances for their coercive missile diplomacy working have
improved. They will then be tempted to increase their leverage over
Taiwan by increasing the missile threat.
China is a great civilization, a great people and a potential
friend and partner of ours. Once it abides by International rules of
trade, introduces the rule of law across the board, expands its
electoral base, and opens up its system, the problems on its periphery,
including those with Taiwan, will be manageable, if not solvable.
China's great achievements in its monuments, its civilization, art, and
culture are the envy of the world. But we are also aware of the
brutalities in building the monuments such as the Great Wall and Grand
Canal, and more recently the madness of the Great Leap Forward and
Cultural Revolution. There are those in China who seek military
solutions, and missiles have become the instruments of choice. There
are also those, and the Premier could be one of them, who see China's
role primarily as an economic competitor and as more benign. So it is
these economic forces to which we must appeal. The recent Chinese
economic slow down however may have diminished the leaderships economic
legitimacy, and forced them to rely marginally more on the military.
Despite this, it is still in our interest to stress the economic
aspects of the relationship. It makes little sense and is misleading to
label our current relationship a ``constructive strategic
partnership,'' It is no such thing--China is against the expansion of
NATO, against our policy in Kosovo. It has regaled against the
cornerstone of our Asian policy, the U.S.-Japan security alliance. It
is against nuclear inspections in North Korea, and at least publicly
has supported the North Korean missile shots of 1998. It is against our
policy of guaranteeing Taiwan's security by defensive arm sales, and it
refuses to rule out use of force. China has challenged us constantly on
our policy of curbing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
But still, what the Chinese say and do has to be taken seriously--China
is a nuclear power, has ICBMs, a long track record of military combat
and willingness to take losses. It also often uses rhetoric effectively
in disarming its opponents.
There are many ways we should and can engage China. This has been
our policy since 1972 and it has largely worked when we have defended
our interests with skill and persistence. It has not worked when we
have vacillated, caved in, apologized and blustered.
Sunzi said, ``Therefore those who win every battle are not
really skillful--those who render other armies helpless without
fighting are the best of all. The best victory is when the
opponent surrenders of his own accord before there are any
This is a large part of China's strategy towards the U.S. and
Taiwan today. Military intimidation and gong-banging (if you will) are
important ingredients. The Chinese are counting on a reduced U.S.
military presence in Asia over time while they improve their own
comparative advantage. A strong element of political and psychological
warfare is present and is increasingly focused on NMD and TMD. The very
fact of this focus telegraphs these vulnerabilities. S. 693 comes to
grips with some of these vulnerabilities. Our response is especially
important when improving our software cooperation with Taiwan. This is
spelled out in (b) Plan: concerning communication, planning, education
and training. This has been our greatest shortcoming to date.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Ambassador, thank you, and Mr.
Secretary, thank you again.
I am going to leave here in a few minutes and Senator Frist
is going to jump in and complete the hearing. But before I go,
I would like again to thank you both.
Mr. Ambassador, I would like to direct a general question
to you, following along with your testimony. Should we be
connecting trade, WTO, and other such relationships more
directly to the Chinese in our overall relationship as to how
it embroiders around the completeness of that relationship,
especially in light of some of the military-strategic issues
that we have with them?
Ambassador Lilley. Frankly, Mr. Chairman, I think that the
World Trade Organization entrance of China should be handled on
the merits of commercial arrangements. I think that it is very
important for us to establish tough requirements for China to
enter and be able to carry out those requirements after it
I think, if you bring human rights, proliferation, or other
issues into this, that it would be destructive. I realize it is
very hard to separate these things in our minds. It has a very
high psychological impact, what the Chinese have done in human
rights and the way they deploy their missiles off Taiwan. But I
think we can handle that in other ways.
The trading arrangement is something that is good for us
and good for them and I think we should proceed with it on its
Senator Hagel. What about the relationship between the
Chinese and the North Koreans? Should we be asking the Chinese
to do more in that relationship?
Ambassador Lilley. I think we have.
In my experience, particularly in the 1991-92 period, the
Chinese were helpful in getting both Koreas into the United
Nations. They played a crucial role in that.
They had been the major supplier to North Korea of food,
oil, coking coal.
We have indications that the Chinese have gone to the North
Koreans and said to them quietly don't fire another missile or
there goes KEDO. This also gives the Japanese a card to play on
theater missile defense. This is directly against China's
interests. Don't do it.
But publicly they have said we have no business talking
about it to the North Koreans because it is a sovereign right
for them to launch satellites.
But, you know, there is a bizarre aspect of this which I
think gives you insight into what the North Koreans are like.
Do you know that the North Koreans actually claim that that
satellite is up there and that it has gone around the world
1,000 times, that it transmits messages?
So when we sit down with them and say that it was a failed
shot, they say you're wrong, it succeeded.
So you sort of walk through the looking glass when you
begin to deal with these people on issues like this.
But I think the Chinese have gone through this for many
years. They have that sort of frozen smile on their face when
they deal with the North Koreans. But I am sure they get some
quid pro quo for what they give the North Koreans. I think it
is in their interests not to let the North Koreans have weapons
of mass destruction.
Senator Hagel. Thank you.
Mr. Secretary, you heard Secretary Schlesinger's testimony
during the question and answer period. Is there anything that
you disagree with from what you heard in Secretary
Schlesinger's answer to how we deal with the Russians,
specifically, on moving forward on amending the ABM Treaty?
Dr. Schneider. It is not so much a disagreement as an
Abrogation is not the only alternative in dealing with the
treaty, apart from renegotiating it. The treaty contains a
provision for withdrawal under ``supreme national interest,''
which permits either party to withdraw from the treaty without
necessitating the act of abrogation.
I think that it may be possible to renegotiate the treaty.
But I think we need to be focusing on making sure that our
response is threat compliant, as distinct from treaty
compliant; that is, the nature of the threat is driving the
contours of what is required for U.S. authorities to produce an
effective ballistic missile defense. In amplifying the
Secretary's point, the idea of getting only a single, small
change to accommodate the proposed NMD is probably not going to
be adequate for our needs.
Senator Hagel. Would you care to offer your opinion in
regard to how we are handling Kosovo?
The Ambassador, I thought, framed it up rather well in the
sense of other nations taking some measure of our will and our
commitment. He spoke specifically of the Chinese. Is there
anything you would like to add to what the Ambassador said, as
well as Secretary Schlesinger, as to how we are handling this
now and the kind of consequences our actions will have on these
very specific, dangerous issues, such as missile proliferation?
Dr. Schneider. I believe that how we handle the situation
in Kosovo will be seen as a very informative characterization
of how the United States will react to future security crises.
So, even though the facts in the Kosovo case are not likely to
be replicated precisely in other theaters, how we respond to it
is going to be extremely important. The specter of incremental
application of force at relatively low levels, the relatively
modest amounts of air attacks that were undertaken--initially,
only about 50 sorties per day, which does not provide the kind
of shock to the system that would have affected expectations--
now that these have clearly not worked, the incremental
application of attack helicopters, absent other measures, is
likely to prove ineffective as well.
I think the stakes are very high, and this is an occasion
where I think the Congress has a constructive opportunity to
try to help identify a national purpose in this intervention
and to identify the means necessary to implement that so that
we do not replicate other policy failures in the use of force
that we have seen to our distress, unfortunately, on a number
of other occasions.
Senator Hagel. Thank you.
Senator Frist [presiding]. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Secretary Schneider, I was particularly interested to hear
your comments that Iran might pose a ship-based short-range
missile threat to the United States in the near-term.
I guess I would ask you to elaborate on that. Do you
believe that any national missile defense deployed by the
United States should be able to neutralize this threat?
Dr. Schneider. Thank you, Senator.
First, with respect to Iran's ability to do so, I believe
Iran has the ability to do so now. It can be done with SCUD
missiles which are deployed on mobile transporter-erector-
launchers. These devices can be simply picked up by a
conventional cargo crane and the entire apparatus dropped in
the hole of a ship. With the hatch closed, it would not be
possible by national technical means to identify the cargo in
When Iran deploys the Shahab 3, which is likely later this
year, it is also deployed on a mobile transporter-erector-
launcher and could similarly be deployed. Iran is particularly
troublesome in this regard because, as I said, of its history
of being able to use non-Iranian nationals for activities for
which it chose not to accept responsibility.
Hence the possibility of this I think needs to be taken
I mentioned in my response to Chairman Hagel's question
that our architecture of theater missile defense needs to be
threat compliant rather than treaty compliant; or at least the
threat needs to drive the way in which we perceive the
Because the nature of the threat is both short-range
missiles launched from, say, surface ships clandestinely, as
well as long-range ICBM's, the architecture of our national
missile defense needs to reflect that. So we have to have a
component that is able to intercept the missiles not only
coming from relatively short range, which means they have a low
altitude trajectory, as well as those that come from a long
range, which have a relatively high altitude trajectory.
The short-range systems will also be capable of being
launched from virtually any azimuth, as Secretary Schlesinger
Therefore, I believe the architectural proposals, whether
they are made by the administration or the Congress, should be
subjected to a criteria that asks whether it is responsive to
Senator Frist. Thank you.
Ambassador Lilley, should the United States be concerned
over continuing reports that China may be pursuing multiple
independently targetable re-entry vehicles?
Ambassador Lilley. I think we should be concerned, but I
don't think there is anything we can do about it except tighten
our security at Los Alamos and various other places.
They have been after MIRV for a long time. They tried to
get the SS-18 from the Soviet Union intact. I think Secretary
Perry mentioned this some time ago, that they may have
That is a solid fuel missile with MIRV capability. They are
determined to get MIRV.
I think one of the most specious arguments that is made is
that theater missile defense will force them to get MIRV. You
hear this from the Chinese apologists. They are going that way
anyway. It is in their national interest. They could use
theater missile defense as an excuse and have Americans run
around parroting their line. But they are after it.
Unless we get into extensive missile talks with them, which
certainly have not happened yet--they have put out the word,
for instance, among a lot of the Chinese-Americans in the
academic community that they have not deployed the missiles,
that they are not there, that we are wrong. They say it is too
expensive, we don't have the engineers, we don't have the
underground sites, it is an American fallacy. Or, as somebody
put it, it's an Arabian Nights story.
It is this particular disconnect you have with them when
they deny it flatly--did you commit espionage in the States?
Did you hear the response that the premier made? ``It is our
government policy not to do this. Nobody told me we did it. I
asked the military and they didn't know anything about it.''
But did he ever deny it?
So I think that the evidence is overwhelming that they are
engaged in this. But they deny it. They deny illegal campaign
funding. ``We don't do it.'' Well, how about Liu Hun Ching's
daughter and Johnny Chung's money? ``Oh, that didn't happen.''
So when you get into the missiles, you have to get into
some pretty hard ground, as we did with the Russians. The way
you do that, of course, is to make it really difficult for them
by having a capability to deal with their coercive missile
diplomacy. That is where I think the Americans have shown some
I think they see a window of opportunity in the next 24
months to press very hard to get us to commit ourselves.
Senator Frist. Thank you.
Mr. Secretary, I am on another committee--not the Foreign
Relations Committee--where I serve as chairman of the
Subcommittee on Science, Technology, and Space. I have a real
interest in dual use technologies. With the increasing
availability of dual use technologies, particularly through the
space launch programs, we see this enhancing of the ability of
countries to produce ballistic missiles and reentry vehicles.
Now, because of limitations contained in the START Treaty,
Russia has been constrained in its ability to set up space
launch facilities in foreign countries, such as Iran and China.
But the Clinton administration has offered to change the
START Treaty and give Russia the opportunity to locate as many
as three new space launch facilities outside of its territory.
But when asked by Chairman Helms to make its offer conditional
upon a formal Russian agreement that it would not put
facilities in any country that is pursuing ballistic missiles,
the administration refused.
Do you know if it is wise for the administration to make
such an offer to Russia at this time without obtaining the
commitment I have described? What would be the impact of a
Russian space launch program in a country like China or Iran?
Dr. Schneider. I think it would be a high risk to U.S.
proliferation objectives for the United States to acquiesce in
an expansion of the number of launch sites, especially in
countries that are ballistic missile proliferation risks.
As I mentioned in my testimony, most of the Russian space
ICBM's have also been modified for space launch purposes. One
that is being marketed now is a variant of the SS-25, which is
a mobile solid fuel ICBM. The amount of technology transfer
that is associated with the conduct of space launch activities
makes it inevitable that military ballistic missile technology
would be transferred to a recipient.
Hence, the proliferation objectives of the United States
would be frustrated by such a course. So I would urge that the
U.S. Government abstain from liberalizing this regime.
Senator Frist. Mr. Ambassador, do you have any comment on
that issue, that of space launch or the Russian space launch
program in a country like China or Iran?
Ambassador Lilley. Again, I think China is going to proceed
with a space launch capability. We think they are going to have
a man in space, perhaps for the 50th anniversary of the October
They see clearly and their own writings reflect their
fascination with the use of satellites to direct warfare. And
certainly their military has been directed as a high priority
to work on taking out our satellites, putting out our eyes.
So they are thinking very much along these lines. I don't
think they will be inhibited by any international agreements
that are reached. I think this is a matter of national defense
and they will proceed as they must.
Senator Frist. Mr. Secretary, I agree that we should move
ahead quickly to deploy a missile defense. Do you believe that
we should negotiate with Russia to allow for such a defense
within the confines of a revised ABM Treaty, or should we move
forward on deployment and invite Russia to join us on the more
Dr. Schneider. I share Secretary Schlesinger's concern
about the fragility of politics in Russia and especially
bilateral relations. However, the rapidity with which the
threat has matured to the United States makes this an urgent
matter of national security. The requirements for
liberalization in the ABM Treaty extend far beyond those that
are required to support the proposed national missile defense.
I mentioned some of those during my testimony.
So, unless you can get a very far-reaching revision of the
terms of the treaty, then I think we should take advantage of
the provisions of the treaty that allow for withdrawal from the
treaty upon 6 months notice and proceed to produce a missile
defense system that addresses the threat we face.
Senator Frist. Thank you.
I want to shift gears again a bit, away from both of your
oral presentations, to South Africa. South Africa became a
nuclear power even in the face of what was supposed to be
political, economic, military, and geographic isolation.
Different factors than those in the former Soviet Union have
led to what some term a brain drain among South African whites,
but on a much smaller scale.
Certainly, disaffected elements of South Africa's military
have achieved notoriety or infamy as extremely effective
military assets out there for hire.
With that potential outflow of knowledge and talent from a
functioning number of weapons and missile technology program, I
wanted to ask you to help me address several issues for me to
gain a better understanding of the potential proliferation
issues that this represents.
I guess, first, have we seen a brain drain of nuclear
weapons talent or technology from South Africa, either to
specific programs, or to specific countries, or to the open
market to the extent that it may exist?
Dr. Schneider. The South African nuclear program was a
clandestine program. It was not an announced program. So the
identification of the players in that program have been fairly
limited. But I think it is important to appreciate that modern
technology does not require the kind of labor mobility that
would have been required even a decade ago.
Now a lot of the pertinent data is readily available
through networked computers, that is, the Internet, as well as
substantial means of electronic communication.
The fact that some individuals from South Africa may be
traveling to other parts of the world is certainly a
possibility, as is the case with Chinese, Russian, North
Korean, Pakistani, Indians and so forth people.
The mechanism for the diffusion of knowledge about these is
so substantial that it is probably beyond control now.
There are a couple of Internet web sites that have precise
industrial engineering detail for the manufacturer of first and
second generation fission weapons. So the need for extensive
clandestine contact with experts is much diminished over what
it would have been a few years ago.
Senator Frist. How important is the current South African
Government's treatment of what is left of the country's
discontinued and disbanded nuclear weapons program? How
important is that--or of any ballistic missile program today?
Dr. Schneider. South Africa has a substantial reservoir of
expertise that it developed based on its national requirement
for autarchy. I believe the U.S. Government has had a very
favorable response from the South African Government concerning
the protection of sensitive technologies. South Africa has
enacted a statute and, as far as I understand it, has been
quite successful in complying with the statute with respect to
the protection of sensitive technologies and avoid their
So I think, at least at this stage, the reaction has been
quite good and I think we have some basis for optimism that
South Africa sees it as in its interest to avoid the export of
Senator Frist. It sounds as if your level of confidence in
our defense and intelligence communities' understanding of
what's left of these programs is pretty good?
Dr. Schneider. Well, in this case we have a fairly high
level of cooperation from the South African authorities,
supported by a statutory regime, in which we have some access
and continued contact. It makes it possible for us to have
higher confidence in what we do know about South Africa.
This, of course, contrasts sharply with some of the other
countries where we do not have such access, where clandestine
WMD and ballistic missile programs are well underway.
Senator Frist. Thank you.
Ambassador Lilley, given your assessment of China's
intentions, which you outlined very well, for acquiring
missiles, do you favor our deploying a national missile
Ambassador Lilley. No question, sir. We should.
May I just add something to your last question? I think a
much more serious problem in terms of proliferation of weapons
of mass destruction is the former Soviet Union and the degree
to which it is involved in China. We get indications that it is
enormous. It is not just the weapon systems I talk about here,
but it is the Russian nuclear engineers, it's Russian
propulsion engineers, it's Russian jet engineers building up a
Chinese military capability.
It's the outflow of experts. As far as I know, we have been
able to monitor some of it, but not enough of it.
The other thing I would say is that we have been more
successful in curbing nuclear missile programs with our
friends. We stopped one in Taiwan and in South Korea; whereas
both China and North Korea have proceeded with nuclear programs
when we have bottled up the programs in Taiwan and South Korea.
You can think about the strategic implications of that.
Whether we did the right thing, we did it and we did it
successfully. We stopped those programs of our friends.
What is unfortunate in all of this is I do think our North
Korean deal and the agreed framework undercuts our position. I
think Secretary Schlesinger mentioned this. We are selling them
two 1,000 megawatt reactors for shutting a known nuclear
facility in Yongbyon. It's a country with 11,000 caves and an
absolute determination to get nuclear weapons and long-range
missiles. Their survival depends on it and they are not going
to commit suicide. It is built into their psyche.
So we have a problem here, certainly in convincing the
Chinese that it is in our common interest to curb North Korean
ambitions. This has succeeded to a limited extent.
Other areas we have to work on include we have to think
about carefully how we manage a Chinese missile threat. What
are the stages that we have? Do we go from a theater missile
defense to an ability to knock down a token number of missiles
in an exercise to an alternate ability to disrupt their system
through electronic warfare? Or do you have an ability to take
out their launching sites after a first launch? Or, in a final
determination, do you consider massive retaliation? There is a
whole series, it seems to me, of counter missile measures that
have to be thought through when we deal with a major missile
Senator Frist. With deploying a national missile defense,
as you went through China's motivation for acquiring missiles,
would a failure to deploy a national missile defense just
reenforce Chinese views that missiles are a critical military
equalizer vis-a-vis the United States?
Ambassador Lilley. That certainly has been the evidence so
far. When we look at their tactics, we see that they have
clearly spelled out missiles as their first priority. I mention
in my testimony that one of their leading defense generals made
this statement flat out, that this is what we're after.
We look through their writings and this is what they're
going to do. We see it in terms of watching the work of their
institutes, the engineers and scientists they select for this
priority work, the money that goes into it. It is clearly a
How do you deal with this? That is our question. They made
up their mind as to what they are going to do. I don't think
there is very much question about that.
Senator Frist. Thank you.
Mr. Secretary, the Rumsfeld Commission, of which you were a
member, determined that North Korea, Iran, and Iraq would, and
I quote, ``be able to inflict major destruction on the U.S.
within 5 years of a decision to acquire such a capability, 10
years in the case of Iran.''
What are your views on whether that decision has been taken
or not by North Korea and Iran?
Dr. Schneider. That is one of the areas that is virtually
impossible to tell. We will not know when a decision like this
has been made.
We do know that in States that have clandestine WMD and
ballistic missile programs, they take extraordinary measures to
protect the secrecy of their decision processes. In the case of
Iran, for example, it has a parallel system of government--one
government led by President Khatami, which is the civil
government, and a separate and parallel government led by
Islamic authorities. It is the Islamic authorities that are
running the WMD and ballistic missile programs.
The Iranian constitutional system permits this sort of
thing to flourish and we are likely never to know when they
have decided to go ahead with the deployment of a ballistic
missile program. We will only know after we begin to see them
in the field.
Senator Frist. Thank you.
The Clinton administration has negotiated an agreement with
Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus to formally
reconstitute the ABM Treaty, which dissolved along with the
Is this a sensible approach to take?
Dr. Schneider. No, I don't believe so because, as Secretary
Schlesinger said, simply in diplomatic terms it would be
difficult to negotiate an agreement with additional parties.
And, in fact, the burden of the discussion we have been having
in the United States, even within the administration, has been
to look to ways to liberalize the treaty rather than to make it
Senator Frist. Do you recommend the Senate approve an
agreement to reestablish the treaty with these four new
Dr. Schneider. No, I do not.
Senator Frist. I have one final question. Many recent
intelligence assessments have not paid a great deal of
attention to the possibility of an accidental or unauthorized
launch from the former Soviet Union. Do you believe that the
danger of such a launch has increased, decreased, or remained
substantially the same over, say, the last 5 years?
Dr. Schneider. There are several reasons to suggest that
the danger has increased. One example of this relates to how
Russian authorities react during the period of a crisis, even a
There was a launch of a Norwegian sounding rocket in 1995,
and this launch was misinterpreted, at least briefly
misinterpreted, by the Russian early warning system. This led
to a rapid escalation up the decision ladder in Russia.
The problem was quickly diagnosed and the crisis was
brought to an end. But if you examine what has happened to the
integrity of the strategic rocket forces subsequent to the
dissolution of the former Soviet Union, the inability to
maintain a substantial fraction of their command and control
system in a modernized state is causing a problem, the most
recent being the evidence that the Y2K program, the computer
glitch, associated with the change from the end of 1999 to the
start of 2000, may severely affect aspects of Russia's early
That has stimulated what I think is a very constructive
program of consultation between the United States and Russia on
this particular problem. But I think it underscores the fact
that, in a crisis, the Russian system may be prone to failure.
Senator Frist. Thank you.
Ambassador, I have one final question.
Should the United States begin a robust program of
cooperation on theater missile defenses with our allies in Asia
as a way of offsetting China's missile strategy?
Ambassador Lilley. I think this has really already started
with Japan. The cost of the Chinese missile shots in 1995 and
1996 are beginning to ratchet up.
Those shots have given great stimulus to the Japan-U.S.
security treaty and its new guidelines, which frankly is an
anathema to the Chinese. They have given impetus to theater
missile defense cooperation with Japan, which is moving ahead
better than it ever had before.
They have increased Taiwan hostility toward China and
Taiwan has a reluctance to go back and work with them in
constructive ways. And I think also they could possibly have
affected technology transfer to China on dual technology that
would affect missile development.
So I guess what I am trying to say is that we should
proceed with Japan because I gather from Premier Zhu Rong-ji's
trip, he began to separate out our theater missile defense for
Taiwan from Japan. I think Japan is almost being accepted as an
inevitability--although the Chinese threw a tantrum about it
earlier-on and threatened the Japanese.
They seem to be backing off on that because they can see
that the Japanese nationalism is increasing, particularly after
President Jiang Zemin's trip last year. That trip bombed.
The Japanese were lectured by Jiang on historic massacres,
crimes, and war criminal acts.
The Japanese did these acts but they don't like to be told
constantly about it.
The Chinese have set in motion counter activities which
they now find rather hard to deal with. So it seems to me--and
I have laid out the logic for this in my paper--that we have no
choice but to proceed on missile defense in view of the
selection the Chinese have made.
Senator Frist. And would you add South Korea and Taiwan?
Ambassador Lilley. Well, I'll tell you, South Korea does
not want it. South Korea has so far been very reluctant to take
it for a number of reasons--first, because China is necessary
to them for their policy in North Korea. And I know from my own
experiences and close relationship with their leaders that the
South Koreans do not want to offend China on this issue, and
that China has indicated they will be very offended.
Second, they see that theater missile defense does not do
much good for them. The North Koreans are poised up there on
the 38th parallel with these long-range rockets that could
decimate Seoul. There is nothing they could do about it, or
about North Korean SCUD missiles coming in en masse.
So they have really sort of bowed out of it.
As for Taiwan, that gets into a highly tricky political
subject. Again, I agree with Secretary Schlesinger. You don't
want to confront this one at this time. The Chinese have laid
down the marker, as I've explained. But it seems to me we move
ahead on this.
I said you start with the software because this is the
least objectionable aspect of it. Then, when once you get a
workable system, then you can make your decision of how you
want to use and deploy it.
If the Chinese do keep up their missile diplomacy, then you
look at the TMD as an integral part of an overall anti-missile
system that we can develop in that area.
Senator Frist. Thank you both very much.
Mr. Ambassador and Mr. Secretary, thank you for being with
us and for your very enlightening testimony and the question
and answer period.
Dr. Schneider. Thank you.
Ambassador Lilley. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Frist. With that, we stand adjourned.
[The following statement was submitted for inclusion in the
Prepared Statement of Robert D. Walpole, National Intelligence Officer
for Strategic and Nuclear Programs, Center for Strategic and
International Studies--December 8, 1998
north korea's taepo dong launch and some implications on the ballistic
missile threat to the united states
Good morning. I welcome the opportunity to be here today to talk
about the recent North Korean Taepo Dong launch, and more broadly the
ballistic missile threat to the United States. Assessing and defining
the threat to our homeland and to our interests worldwide is one of the
most important intelligence missions in the post-Cold War world. At the
outset, I want to underscore that the Intelligence Community considers
foreign assistance to be fundamental to that threat, not merely an
incidental aspect of the problem. The threat is real, serious, and
growing. In fact, Congress has mandated that we provide annual
Community reports on the threat. But the threat is also dynamic. Since
our March 1998 annual report to Congress on foreign missile
developments, the Pakistani Ghauri, Iranian Shahab 3, and North Korean
Taepo Dong-1 missiles/launch vehicles have all been tested. In light of
the latter, we published a classified update memorandum in October on
the North Korean Taepo Dong missiles and some potential implications
for the future.
Taepo Dong-1 Launch
Let me begin with the August 31 Taepo Dong-1 satellite launch
attempt. While the system's third stage failed, the launch confirmed
Intelligence Community concerns the past several years regarding North
Korea's efforts to acquire an ICBM capability; the launch also
demonstrated some unanticipated developments.
We have been following North Korea's ICBM progress since the early
1990s, most notably, its efforts to develop what we called the Taepo
Dong-1 medium-range missile and the Taepo Dong-2 ICBM, both of which we
had assessed were two-stage missiles. The fact that we have been
following these efforts for many years is significant:
First, it indicates that North Korea has taken about ten
years since it made the decision to acquire an ICBM capability
to conduct a flight test, and deployment has not yet begun.
Projections of missile development and deployment need to be
country- and program-specific; we cannot follow a single
template for the world.
Second, it means that we have been reporting on and making
projections about these developments for years. In some cases,
our projections overestimated North Korean capabilities; for
example, some projected that the Taepo Dong-2 would have flown
by now. In any event, our reports over the years relate to
questions about current and future Intelligence Community
abilities to warn about ICBM programs and developments.
The August launch used what we had called the Taepo Dong-1 medium-
range missile, but it had an unanticipated third stage. Although the
North Koreans failed to place their satellite into orbit, they tested
some important aspects of ICBM development and flight, such as multiple
stage separation, roughly on the timetable we expected, but using a
vehicle configuration we had not anticipated.
The existence of the third stage concerns us. First, we had not
included it in our earlier projections; neither had outside experts
looking at our intelligence. Second, it and potentially larger third
stages have significant implications for the Taepo Dong-2. Third, it
raises many proliferation concerns. We are continuing to conduct more
analysis on it, trying to identify more about it, including its
capabilities and why it failed.
Our update memorandum assesses the North Korean capabilities
demonstrated by this launch and the threat implications of the Taepo
Dong missiles. The memorandum notes, for example, that the first and
second stages performed to North Korean expectations, providing what
amounts to a successful flight test of a two-stage Taepo Dong-1 medium-
range missile. With an ability to deliver several hundred-kilogram
payloads about two thousand kilometers, the system poses a threat to
U.S. allies and interests in the region.
We also assess that after the North Koreans resolve some important
technical issues, including assessing why the third stage failed, they
would be able to use the three-stage configuration as a ballistic
missile, albeit with great inaccuracy, to deliver small payloads to
ICBM ranges; that is, ranges in excess of 5,500 km--the smaller the
payload, the longer the range.
Taking note of that relationship between payloads and ranges, the
update looks at the implications of lighter payloads for the Taepo
Dong-2, which we had assessed in the mid-1990's could deliver larger
payloads--several hundred to a thousand kilograms--4,000 to 6,000
kilometers. At the upper end of that range, the Taepo Dong-2 could
reach mainland Alaska and the Hawaiian Islands with these heavy
payloads. Simple physics tells us the lighter payloads could go
further. The update memorandum also looks at the implications of the
third stage on the Taepo Dong-2; with the stage demonstrated in August,
the Taepo Dong-2, again with significant inaccuracy, could probably
reach the rest of the United States, depending on the size of its
We also discussed proliferation and transfer implications of the
missiles to countries such as Pakistan, Iran, and Iraq (if
unrestrained). Finally, the update discusses our assessments of these
countries' biological, chemical, and nuclear weapons programs.
We have learned that we need to be much more explicit in our
warnings about missile developments--not just indicating that a country
has an ICBM program, that it could flight test and deploy an ICBM in
given years, all of which are important messages. We also need to
include clearer language and more details about how we might and might
not be able to warn about other specific milestones in an ICBM
development effort, judgments that will likely vary by country. We have
determined that concepts like ``deployment'' vary by country; in some
cases, for example, deployment may not require dedicated, long-term
missile basing facilities.
The Taepo Dong launch demonstrated--in a way that words alone
cannot--only one of the emerging threats facing the U.S. interests. Our
March 1998 annual report was prepared as our first response to a
request by Congress for a yearly update of that threat assessment.
Under the DCI's direction, the 1998 report responded to criticisms
levied at a 1995 National Intelligence Estimate. It also incorporated
the recommendations of outside experts who reviewed the 1995 estimate.
As a result, the 1998 report addresses concerns regarding how we
discuss foreign assistance, alternatives to increasing a missile's
range, and approaches to circumvent development. Work is already
underway on the 1999 report, and we are looking differently at how we
characterize uncertainties, alternative scenarios, and warnings as a
result of our interaction with outside experts since the March report
was published. With the continued involvement of outside experts, I
expect successive reports to be better, addressing additional questions
as they are asked.
Our 1998 Report
This morning I would also like to outline the March 1998 report;
discuss areas where the substantive conclusions might agree or disagree
with those of other experts; and discuss what we are doing differently
for our 1999 report. While I wish you all could read our March 1998
report, which gives a full appreciation for our views and concerns
about this growing threat, it remains classified, and therefore cannot
be released to the public. But, I can give you a feel for what the
Let me first make four points on our methodology.
One: we do not expect countries to follow any specific
pattern for ICBM development. In fact, the United States, the
former Soviet Union, and China all took different approaches.
We frequently caution ourselves against any mirror-imaging.
Just because a country took a certain amount of time--long or
short--to develop and deploy an ICBM does not mean another
Two: we recognize that foreign countries can hide many
activities from us. These countries are generally increasing
their security measures and are learning from each other and
from open reporting of our capabilities. Hence, while I am able
to share somewhat with you today, I will not go beyond limits
that will help them hide even more from us.
Three: with limited data, we are forced somewhat to use
input and output methodologies to evaluate the threat. In
addition, the Intelligence Community must attach likelihood
judgments to its projections; thus, we project scenarios we
judge to be most likely and include other scenarios with
likelihood judgments attached. Let me repeat, we agree with
others that many scenarios are possible, with varying degrees
of likelihood. Indeed, we have looked at many of these rapid-
development scenarios, including outright sales, which could
get a country from a decision to ``deployment'' in a matter of
months, weeks, or even days, depending on one's scenario.
Four: we do not consider the ``absence of evidence'' to be
``the evidence of absence.'' Quite the contrary, intelligence
analysts routinely face gaps and make analytical judgments to
project plausible scenarios. Working with limited evidence and
making judgments is central to our job, as long as we
underscore when we have little or no evidence. Analysts did so
in the case of the critical threats some of the missiles pose.
We also have noted that successful missile tests would give
countries an emergency launch capability with any missiles in
their inventory, even without evidence of deployment.
In the report, we underscore the significant role foreign
assistance has played and continues to play--indeed throughout the
report are several major discussions of technology transfer. For
example, the report begins with several pages discussing the extent of
foreign assistance from numerous suppliers to even more recipients. It
also notes how foreign assistance has helped specific missile programs,
such as assistance with Iran's Shahab 3 missile. The report underlines
the immediate threat posed by medium-range missiles, our continuing
concern about existing and emerging ICBM's, and the increasing danger
that comes from the proliferation activities of countries that possess
or are developing such systems. We and the Rumsfeld Commission--using
the available evidence, group debate, and outside expert review--came
to some different conclusions about some of the timelines for ICBM
development. Nevertheless, where evidence is limited and the stakes are
high, we all need to keep challenging our assumptions--a role we will
perform on this issue at least annually.
I'll now summarize the body of the report, which focuses on the
threat through 2010:
Theater-range missiles already in hostile hands pose an immediate
and increasing threat to U.S. interests, military forces, and allies.
More countries are acquiring ballistic missiles with ranges up to 1,000
km, and more importantly, with ranges between 1,000 km and 3,000 km. As
Iran's flight test of its Shahab 3 medium-range missile demonstrates,
this is not hypothetical; it is a reality that has to be dealt with
now. With a range of 1,300 km, the Shahab 3 significantly alters the
military equation in the Middle East by giving Tehran the capability to
strike targets in Israel, Saudi Arabia, and most of Turkey. The
Pakistani Ghauri, also tested this year, allows targeting of Saudi
Arabia, Kuwait, and the Gulf, in addition to increasing Pakistan's
coverage of India.
Foreign assistance is fundamental to the growing theater missile
threat. As we describe in the 1998 report, for example, Iran received
important foreign assistance in developing its Shahab 3. Moreover,
countries are seeking the capability to build these missiles
independently of foreign suppliers. The growth in the sharing of
technology among the aspiring missile powers is also of concern.
While we project that Russia's strategic forces will shrink, they
continue to be modernized and will remain formidable. China has about
20 CSS-4 ICBM's, in addition to shorter-range missiles. Most of the
CSS-4's are targeted against the United States, and modernization
efforts will likely increase the number of Chinese warheads aimed at
the United States. Our report further noted that we judge that an
unauthorized or accidental launch of a Russian or Chinese strategic
missile is highly unlikely, as long as current security procedures and
systems are in place. Russia employs an extensive array of technical
and procedural safeguards and China keeps its missiles unfueled and
without warheads mated.
Among those countries seeking longer-range missiles, the report
noted that North Korea is the most advanced, a judgment underscored by
the recent launch. The report noted that North Korea could flight test
the Taepo Dong-2 missile this year (with only a few weeks left of the
year, this is likely another overestimation on our part) and that it
could be deployed in a few years. Beyond the North Korean Taepo Dong-2,
the March report judged it unlikely, despite the extensive transfer of
theater missile technology, that other countries (except Russia and
China as just mentioned) will develop, produce, and deploy an ICBM
capable of reaching any part of the United States over the next decade.
Of course, the key words here were develop, produce, and deploy. As
the report also noted, the purchase of a missile, either complete or as
components of a kit, is a different matter. In fact, we identified
several alternative scenarios for a country to acquire an ICBM capable
of reaching the United States sooner than 2010, without having to
develop, produce, and deploy one. These included buying an ICBM, a
space launch vehicle (SLV) to convert into an ICBM, or a complete
production facility for either. The report judged that the current
policies of Russia and China make sales-related scenarios unlikely,
given potential political repercussions, the creation of a self-
inflicted threat, and China's own military needs. Our report also
pointed out that we cannot be certain that this will remain true over
the long term. Indeed, the further into the future we project the
politico-economic environment, the less certain we would be that the
``value'' of the sale would not outweigh these factors in foreign
thinking. And, as North Korea develops its Taepo Dong missiles, sales
become an increasing concern.
But ICBM's are not the only emerging missile threats to the United
States. A number of countries have the technological wherewithal to
develop the capability to launch ballistic (or cruise) missiles from a
forward-based platform, such as a surface ship. Forward-basing from
dedicated vessels or from freighters could pose a threat to the United
States in the near term--well before 2010.
Our abilities to warn about the above-mentioned threats and
postulated concerns vary. The 1998 report assessed that:
We could provide five years warning before deployment that a
potentially hostile country was trying to develop and deploy an
ICBM capable of hitting the United Slates, unless that country
purchased an ICBM or SLV (including having another country
develop the system for them); had an indigenous SLV; or
purchased a turnkey production facility. The comments I made
earlier about our reporting over the years on North Korean ICBM
development efforts underscore that warning ability.
We could not count on providing much warning of either the
sale of an ICBM or the sale and conversion of an SLV
(conversion could occur in as little as two years).
Nevertheless, if a hostile country acquired an SLV, we would
warn that the country had an inherent ICBM capability. I note,
however, that both the United States and the Soviet Union used
systems we did not consider as ICBM's to place their first
satellites into orbit. The satellite we orbited weighed only 14
These two warning capabilities must be understood in tandem.
Unfortunately, the warning related to sales may dominate in the near
term. As North Korea proceeds with its Taepo Dong developments, we
assess that they will follow their current path and market them; at a
minimum, aspiring recipients will try to buy them.
We probably would obtain indications of the construction of
a turnkey facility before it was completed, providing several
If a country had an SLV, it could probably convert it into
an ICBM in a few years, significantly reducing warning time.
Adapting missiles for launch from a commercial ship could be
accomplished covertly and probably with little or no warning.
Finally, our report noted that non-missile delivery of weapons of
mass destruction--biological, chemical, nuclear and radiological
weapons--poses a serious, immediate threat to U.S. interests at home
Outside Views of March 1998 Report
The tests of several medium-range missiles since that report was
published underscored our theater concerns expressed in March. The
three-stage Taepo Dong-1's ability to deliver small payloads to
intercontinental ranges underscored our concerns about the possibility
of a North Korean ICBM test this year. Since our March report was
published, the Rumsfeld Commission and others have also commented upon
the threat. There is broad agreement on several points:
The threat is real and growing.
Foreign assistance and proliferation are the fundamental
reasons for the growing threat.
Foreign denial and deception and resource constraints are
making our job more difficult.
There are plausible scenarios that could result in an
increased missile threat to the United States with little or no
Since information is limited, we also have some areas of
disagreement. Our projections for North Korea, Iran, and Iraq differ
from the 5-year general statement made by the Rumsfeld Commission. We
project each country's programs individually, taking into account
collaboration and foreign assistance:
Thus, we were able to illustrate our view that North Korea
is ahead of the others and could have an ICBM sooner, primarily
because we believed that North Korea probably made the decision
to acquire an ICBM at least a decade ago.
The recently tested Iranian Shahab 3 is based on the North
Korean No Dong and followed North Korea's test, even with
foreign assistance, by several years. Nevertheless, Iran will
continue to seek longer range missiles. If Iran follows a
pattern similar to the Shahab 3 time frame, it would take them
many years to develop a 10,000 km range ICBM to reach the
United States. On the other hand, if they purchased an ICBM
from North Korea or elsewhere or followed the approach North
Korea recently demonstrated of placing a third stage on its
boosters, it would be quicker. If they bought an ICBM with a
sufficient range and payload capability, further development
might be a moot point.
When the Commission published its report in July, it
considered Iraq to be behind North Korea and Iran relative to
ballistic missile technology, assessing it would take Iraq 10
years from decision to deployment for an ICBM. Two months
later, the Commission revised that judgment before the Senate
Armed Services Committee, dropping the timeline to 5 years
along with North Korea and Iran. We consider Iraq to have some
advantages over other countries. Iraq was ahead of Iran before
the Gulf war, and it has not lost the technological expertise
and creativity. If sanctions were lifted, it would take them
several years to develop a 9,000 km range ICBM to reach the
United States. As with Iran, if Iraq purchased an ICBM, or
followed the approach North Korea recently demonstrated, it
would be quicker. If they bought an ICBM with a sufficient
range and payload capability, further development might be a
We are already working on the 1999 annual report and are planning
to include significant additional outside expertise and red teaming:
Private-sector contractors are helping us identify
alternative development paths that future ballistic missiles
could take, including specific technologies and potential
hurdles involved. These efforts include assessments of the
effects of increased foreign assistance.
We have scheduled a conference with the Center for Strategic
and International Studies to have academia and others postulate
future politico-economic environments that foster missile sales
and increasing foreign assistance.
This summer, the Intelligence Community published a
classified paper that postulated ways a country could
demonstrate an ICBM capability with an SLV, and examined
various ways it could convert its SLV's into ICBM's. This work
will also feed into the 1999 report as a generic look at some
Finally, drafting is underway on a paper that examines how
countries could push Scud technology beyond perceived limits.
Scientists and nonscientists are involved. Sometimes, those
already outside the box can think outside the box more readily.
We also intend in the 1999 report--after discussing our projected
timelines for likely missile developments and deployments, as well as
our concerns for ICBM sales--to postulate and evaluate many alternative
scenarios, including those mentioned above. Finally, we will be much
more explicit and detailed in our discussions about warning. All these
evaluations will be made through the lens of potential denial and
deception efforts, to ensure that as our task gets more difficult, we
provide our policy makers with a clear representation of what we know,
what we don't know, what we can't know, and finally what we judge based
on evidence, the lack thereof, and expertise from inside and outside
In conclusion, I'll state that we, the Rumsfeld Commission, and
some other outside experts agree that the missile threat confronts the
Intelligence Community with an array of complicated problems that
require innovative solutions. I would also emphasize how appreciative
we are of the Commission's work. I particularly like the fact that they
received approval to publish a relatively detailed unclassified report
on the threat. We gave the Commission access to all the available
intelligence information, regardless of classification.
Finally, the Commission made a number of excellent recommendations
for how we can improve collection and analysis on foreign missile
developments. Indeed, its report reinforces the DCI's call for a
stronger investment in analysis and more aggressive use of outside
expertise. Incorporating the Commission's ideas will strengthen our
work. The missile threat is a serious and complex issue, one of many
others that the Intelligence Community is working. We use many
vehicles, including estimates, briefings, and annual reports, to convey
our analyses and warnings to policy makers and Congress. We will
continue to do so on this and other issues.
[Whereupon, at 11:28 a.m., the committee adjourned, to
reconvene at 10 a.m., May 4, 1999.]
S. Hrg. 106-339
BALLISTIC MISSILES: THREAT AND RESPONSE
COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS
UNITED STATES SENATE
ONE HUNDRED SIXTH CONGRESS
APRIL 15 AND 20, MAY 4, 5, 13, 25, 26, AND SEPTEMBER 16, 1999
Printed for the use of the Committee on Foreign Relations
Available via the World Wide Web: http://www.access.gpo.gov/congress/senate
U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
56-777 CC WASHINGTON : 2000
COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS
JESSE HELMS, North Carolina, Chairman
RICHARD G. LUGAR, Indiana JOSEPH R. BIDEN, Jr., Delaware
PAUL COVERDELL, Georgia PAUL S. SARBANES, Maryland
CHUCK HAGEL, Nebraska CHRISTOPHER J. DODD, Connecticut
GORDON H. SMITH, Oregon JOHN F. KERRY, Massachusetts
ROD GRAMS, Minnesota RUSSELL D. FEINGOLD, Wisconsin
SAM BROWNBACK, Kansas PAUL D. WELLSTONE, Minnesota
CRAIG THOMAS, Wyoming BARBARA BOXER, California
JOHN ASHCROFT, Missouri ROBERT G. TORRICELLI, New Jersey
BILL FRIST, Tennessee
Stephen E. Biegun, Staff Director
Edwin K. Hall, Minority Staff Director
CURRENT AND GROWING MISSILE THREATS TO THE U.S.
TUESDAY, APRIL 20, 1999
Committee on Foreign Relations,
The committee met, pursuant to notice, at 9:31 a.m., in
room SD-562, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Hon. Chuck Hagel
Present: Senators Hagel and Frist.
Senator Hagel. Good morning.
Today's hearing is the second of a series of hearings
focused on the threat of ballistic missile attacks on the
United States, the urgent need for missile defenses and the
need for the United States to disassociate itself from an
obsolete arms control agreement, the 1972 Anti-Ballistic
This morning we have three distinguished witnesses. The
first panel will consist of Dr. James Schlesinger. Dr.
Schlesinger has held many important senior national security
positions in the U.S. Government. He has served as Director of
Central Intelligence, Secretary of Defense and Secretary of
Energy. Presidents of both parties have repeatedly sought Dr.
Schlesinger's counsel and assistance.
Dr. Schlesinger, we are very proud and pleased to have you
with us this morning.
On the second panel is Dr. William Schneider, who was a
member of the Rumsfeld Commission and is an adjunct fellow at
the Hudson Institute. Dr. Schneider is also the president of
International Planning Services and is the former Under
Secretary of State for Security Assistance.
Mr. Secretary, when you come to the table, we will be
grateful for your presence and contribution as well.
Our third witness is the Honorable James Lilley, former
U.S. Ambassador to Korea and China. He has a long and
distinguished career in intelligence, national security, and
Ambassador Lilley is currently a resident fellow and
director of Asian Studies at the American Enterprise Institute.
I assume he will be along shortly. I do not see him yet, but I
know that he will be here.
America's national security lies in the interests of
preventing the proliferation of ballistic missile and warhead
technology. According to unclassified information from the
Defense Intelligence Agency, at least 10 countries have
operational ballistic missiles with ranges greater than 500
kilometers. Within the next decade, that number will grow again
by half, to 15.
Many of these nations--Iran, Iraq, Libya, Syria, and North
Korea--are clearly hostile to the United States. Two things are
certain. First, any of the countries I have just mentioned
could launch a ship-based ballistic missile strike against a
U.S. city today.
I wish to be clear on this point. Every U.S. coastal city,
from Seattle to Bangor, Maine, faces the present and growing
danger of ballistic missile attack.
Last year, the Rumsfeld Commission warned that the sea-
launch option is very real and very plausible.
Similarly, our intelligence community has warned that
forward basing from dedicated vessels or freighters could pose
a missile attack threat to the United States in the near-term.
The ranges and capabilities of ballistic missile programs
are growing rapidly, largely due to the assistance given these
programs by Russia and China. This will translate into the
achievement of ICBM capability for several countries.
One country, in particular, is in the final stages of
developing an ICBM. Last August, North Korea stunned everyone
by launching a version of the Taepo Dong-I missile, which had a
third stage. While we have known about the Taepo Dong-I missile
for several years, we did not expect North Korea to stack a
third stage on it to give the system intercontinental range.
The U.S. intelligence community has warned that with this
missile, North Korea has the ability to deliver small payloads
to ICBM ranges.
Moreover, North Korea has worked on the Taepo Dong-I with
implications for its other, even longer-range, missile, the
Taepo Dong-II. As we have learned more about this program, we
have become increasingly concerned that the missile could be
used to attack cities in Alaska and Hawaii.
Now the U.S. intelligence community judges that with the
staging technology demonstrated on the Taepo Dong-I, North
Korea's Taepo Dong-II could probably reach the rest of the
United States, depending on the size of its payload.
In other words, North Korea is on the verge of fielding a
ballistic missile capable not only of striking my home State of
Nebraska, in the exact middle of the United States, but
anywhere in the United States.
Just as troubling, the Rumsfeld Commission warns that Iran
could join North Korea in its ability to inflict major
destruction on the United States within about 5 years of a
decision to acquire such a capability.
All of this, of course, is in addition to the omnipresent
threat of deliberate or accidental attack against the United
States by Russia or China, both of whom have numerous ballistic
missile capabilities and both are capable of destroying U.S.
Obviously, with such a serious threat growing steadily
worse, one would assume that the United States would have
deployed long ago a missile defense system to protect the
American people. One would assume that the Federal Government
would have made certain by now that the United States is never
exposed to the threat of ballistic missile attack.
Well, such assumptions are wrong. The United States has no
defense against this threat.
This administration, in fact, aggressively blocked every
effort by the Congress to implement a national missile defense
system, to the point of vetoing an entire defense bill because
it mandated the immediate deployment of a missile shield.
The fact is the United States is vulnerable to nuclear and
biological tipped missiles.
This morning's two panels will focus on this issue and the
tangential issues that accompany missile defense. Again, on
behalf of my colleagues on the committee and Chairman Helms, we
are grateful that the three of you would take your time to come
up to share with us your thoughts and make a contribution to
With that, let me now ask the former Secretary of Energy
and Defense, and former CIA Director--a complete public
servant--Jim Schlesinger, for his testimony.
Mr. Secretary, welcome.
STATEMENT OF HON. JAMES R. SCHLESINGER, FORMER SECRETARY OF
DEFENSE, FORMER SECRETARY OF ENERGY, AND FORMER DIRECTOR OF THE
UNITED STATES CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY
Dr. Schlesinger. Thank you so much, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the invitation of the committee
to discuss the possibilities of ballistic missile attack
against the United States and the defenses that we might deploy
to protect against such an attack.
In the time limited, I can, of course, touch only on a few
major points. First, the prominent political role of the United
States in the world makes it a prime target for resentful
nations. Its military preponderance will spur other nations to
seek asymmetrical ways of threatening to inflict pain on this
country, thereby hoping to limit our response to actions on
There is a variety of ways to inflict such pain and, thus,
a variety of potential threats. Ballistic missile attack is one
prominent possibility. But there are others, including cyber
attack, chemical attack, and biological attack.
As you know, the Department of Defense is devoting
increasing attention to such possible attacks. It has recently
established the Defense Threat Reduction Agency and the Threat
Reduction Advisory Committee.
Among such possible threats, that of ballistic missile
attack is the most dramatic, if not necessarily the one of
highest probability. The potential is there already and will
likely grow in the near-term.
As you mentioned, Mr. Chairman, the recent test of the
Taepo Dong missile by North Korea is but an harbinger of what
will inevitably come. In both South Asia and Southwest Asia,
ballistic missile capabilities have already been demonstrated
and are undergoing rapid development.
While such capabilities are not of intercontinental range,
they could threaten American bases or American allies and could
be transported closer to the American mainland to make them
potential threats to the mainland.
Despite international efforts to restrict the spread of
technology, it is spreading and will do so increasingly. Unlike
some of the other potential threats referred to earlier, the
ballistic missile threat will remain a national threat rather
than a threat of terrorist subgroups.
Still, the number and variety of such potential threats
will grow and, thereby, foster a high degree of uncertainty,
contrasting to the cold war, when the source of the threat was
I stress both this potential and this variety since it
underscores the complexity and some difficulties in deploying
appropriate, even if limited, missile defenses.
Third, to achieve a suitable ballistic missile defense, one
that could cope with a limited attack, should, in my judgment,
be a major objective in U.S. defense policy. Both Houses of
Congress have now passed legislation endorsing a policy of
near-term deployment. Extended as the controversy over that
legislation may have been, now comes the truly difficult part--
determining the architecture of the ballistic missile defense
to be deployed. While we seek a thin area defense, we must
avoid just any defense, especially one designed against a
narrowly defined threat.
Any such defense could turn out to be simply a token. The
worst possible outcome would be a limited defense focused too
narrowly on a single threat and one that could readily be
It is crucial that we not confuse a ballistic missile
defense with a relatively simple weapon system, such as the F-
15. A ballistic missile defense would be a complex system of
systems, selected from a range of possible deployments,
combinations of sensors, and capabilities of interceptors. The
choice of systems architecture is crucial. One could all too
easily wind up with an unduly constrained system, lacking
capability against the range of emerging threats.
In this connection, I suggest that we should be wary of the
very limited system proposed for deployment in Alaska or by
some in North Dakota, which might deal with a rudimentary
threat, let us say, from North Korea, and with little else.
The architecture of any system chosen for deployment should
be subject in advance to rigorous technical analysis. Above
all, it should not be so constrained as to lack the capability
for growth to cope with the growing variety of threats.
In choosing among alternative architectures, systems
adaptability and flexibility should be prerequisites.
In choosing a system architecture, we must be assured in
advance that the system can be adapted to the broad range of
threats which may emerge. Consequently, we should avoid any
impulse leading to a rush to acquisition.
Fourth, in this connection, we must remain alert to the
possibility mentioned in the Rumsfeld Commission report, that,
before nations can develop ICBM's capable of reaching the
United States, they could deploy shorter-range ballistic
missiles on ships. You mentioned this in your opening
statement, Mr. Chairman.
A ballistic missile defense, let us say, to Alaska, could
not cope with such a threat. In selecting a system
architecture, we must remain mindful of such a possibility so
that some hostile country does not get the impression that it
could have a free ride.
In this connection also, we must be alert to and exploit
the possibilities for intelligence. Some of the South Asian
nations, including those we term rogue states, have limited
shipbuilding capability or, for that matter, limited sea-faring
experience. We should be alert to the construction or the
modification of ships that could be used for this purpose and
to the possibility of collecting information from the
multinational crews that might be hired for such a purpose.
Gathering such intelligence would create the opportunity of
interdiction in a number of forms. But such possibilities drive
home the point that what we must avoid is a ballistic missile
defense deliberately constrained and focused on a narrowly
Fifth, this brings us, Mr. Chairman, to the controversial
issue of the restraints imposed by the ABM Treaty of 1972, as
An adequate defense cannot be attained within the present
framework of those constraints. Consequently, to deploy a
suitable defense would require either the modification or the
abrogation of the existing treaty.
I should observe that I agree with some of the critics who
believe that we are not legally bound by a treaty with a State
that has simply disappeared and has disintegrated into its
Nevertheless, the treaty does exist. It is part of the
international environment and, irrespective of its legal force,
there are political advantages as well as disadvantages in its
Unquestionably, we would pay a political price in simply
abrogating the treaty, as some urge. In particular, we should
not casually damage our political relationship with Russia in a
way that simultaneously would damage the Russian prestige and
make the Russians less cooperative with us. Particularly this
is so given the presently disturbed relationships arising from
differences reflecting Russia's long-term association with
Nevertheless, Mr. Chairman, we must now allow ourselves to
be precluded from deploying suitable defenses by the treaty in
its present form. What I would suggest is that the United
States move firmly toward deployment of a suitable and adequate
thin area defense, preferably within the framework of the
treaty. This would require substantial modification to permit a
system architecture that could deal with the emerging range of
But we must bear in mind that the Russians have a much
greater stake in the preservation of the ABM Treaty than do we.
It is that treaty and other arms control agreements with the
United States that provide much of Russia's continuing
A modification of the ABM Treaty, as opposed to its
abrogation, which permitted the United States to deploy a thin
area defense in a manner that does not challenge a continuing
Russian retaliatory capability would seem to be in Russia's
interest, particularly so as Russia itself may come to be
threatened by spreading nuclear capabilities among rogue
nations and others.
Yet in moving toward modification of the treaty, we must
convey to the Russians that we are firm in our commitment to
deploy an efficient, if limited, defense and that we must have
treaty modification sufficient to allow a flexible and
adaptable architecture. To negotiate for something less, which,
regrettably, would be an easy temptation, might leave us in
that position of deploying a fixed, limited, and ultimately, a
virtually token defense. Sufficient modification must be our
clear objective--not minimal modification that would leave us
with little more than a token defense.
Sixth, and finally, in the period ahead, a limited nuclear
attack on the United States regrettably will become a growing
possibility. It could come from a variety of perpetrators. I
should have said a limited missile attack on the United States.
It could come from a variety of perpetrators. Because of the
range and the novelty of such possibilities, it will likely be
difficult to achieve an early assessment of missile buildup or
pending attacks among the candidate nations. We should,
therefore, move with all deliberate speed toward an effective
defense of the United States against such missile attacks.
But we must also remember that such an attack need not come
primarily from ballistic missiles. Most notably, we must
simultaneously be alert to the proliferation of cruise missiles
and move toward an effective defense against cruise missiles,
which will likely constitute the next turn in the road.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would be delighted to answer any
[The prepared statement of Dr. Schlesinger follows:]
Prepared Statement of Hon. James R. Schlesinger
Mr. Chairman, Members of the Committee:
I appreciate the invitation of the Committee to discuss the
possibilities of ballistic missile attack against the United States--
and the defenses that we might deploy to provide protection against a
limited attack. In the time allotted, I can, of course, touch only on a
few major points
1. The prominent political role of the United States in the world
makes it a prime target for resentful nations. Its military
preponderance will spur other nations to seek asymmetrical ways of
threatening to inflict pain on this country, thereby hoping to limit
our response to actions on their part. There are a variety of ways to
inflict such pain--and thus a variety of potential threats. Ballistic
missile attack is one prominent possibility. But there are others
including cyber attack, chemical attack, and biological attack. As you
know, the Department of Defense is devoting increasing attention to
such possible attacks. It has recently established the Defense Threat
Reduction Agency and the Threat Reduction Advisory Committee.
2. Among such possible threats, that of ballistic missile attack is
the most dramatic, if not necessarily the one of highest probability.
The potential is there already and will likely grow in the near term.
The recent test of the TAEPO-DONG missile by North Korea is but a
harbinger of what will inevitably come. In both South Asia and
Southwest Asia ballistic missile capabilities have already been
demonstrated--and are undergoing rapid development. While such
capabilities are not of intercontinental range, they could threaten
American bases or American allies and could be transported closer to
the American mainland--to make them potential threats. Despite
international efforts to restrict the spread of technology, it is
spreading and will do so increasingly. Unlike some of the other
potential threats, referred to earlier, the ballistic missile threat
will remain a national threat rather than that of terrorist subgroups.
Still the number and the variety of such potential threats will grow--
and thereby foster a high degree of uncertainty contrasting to the Cold
War, when the source of the threat was clearly known. I stress both
this potential and this variety, since it underscores the complexity
and some difficulties in deploying appropriate, even if limited,
3. To achieve a suitable ballistic missile defense--one that could
cope with a limited attack--should in my judgment be a major objective
in U.S. defense policy. Both Houses of Congress have now passed
legislation endorsing a policy of near-term deployment. Extended as the
controversy over that legislation may have been, now comes the truly
difficult part: determining the architecture of the BMD to be deployed.
While we seek a thin area defense, we must avoid just any defense,
especially one designed against a narrowly-defined threat. Any such
defense could turn out to be simply a token. The worst possible outcome
would be a limited defense focused too narrowly on a single threat, and
one that could readily be circumvented.
It is crucial that we not confuse a BMD with a relatively simple
weapon-system, such as the F-15. A BMD would be a complex system-of-
systems, selected from a ranch of possible deployments, combinations of
sensors, and capabilities of interceptors. The choice of system
architecture is critical. One could all too easily wind up with an
unduly constrained system lacking capability against the range of
emerging potential threats. In this connection, I suggest we should be
wary of the very limited system proposed for deployment in Alaska,
which might deal with a rudimentary threat, let us say, from North
Korea--and with little else.
The architecture of any system chosen for deployment should be
subject in advance to rigorous technical analysis. Above all, it should
not be so constrained, as to lack the capacity of growth to cope with a
growing variety of threats. In choosing among alternative
architectures, system adaptability and flexibility should be
prerequisites. In choosing a system architecture, we must be assured in
advance that that system can be adapted to the broad range of threats
which may emerge. Consequently, we should avoid any impulse leading to
a ``rush to acquisition.''
4. In this connection, we must remain alert to the possibility
mentioned in the Rumsfeld Commission report that, before nations can
develop ICBM's capable of reaching the United States, they could deploy
shorter-range ballistic missiles on ships. A BMD with circumscribed
sensors and confined, let us say, to Alaska could not cope with such a
threat. In selecting a system architecture, we must remain mindful of
such a possibility--so that some hostile country does not get the
impression that it could have a free ride.
In this connection also, we must be alert to and exploit the
possibilities for intelligence. Some of the South Asian nations,
including those we term rogue states, have limited shipbuilding
capacity or for that matter seafaring experience. We should be alert to
the construction or the modification of ships that could be used for
this purpose--and to the possibility of collecting information from the
multi-national crews that might be hired for such a purpose. Gathering
such intelligence would create the opportunity of interdiction in a
variety of forms. But such possibilities drive home the point that what
we must avoid is a BMD deliberately constrained and focused on a
5. This brings us to the controversial issue of the restraints
imposed by the ABM Treaty of 1972, as modified. An adequate defense
cannot be attained within the present framework of those restraints.
Consequently, to deploy a suitable defense would require either
modification or abrogation of the existing treaty. I should observe
that I agree with some of the critics who believe that we are not
legally bound by a treaty with a state that has simply disappeared and
has disintegrated into its component parts. Nonetheless, the treaty
does exist. It is part of the international environment and,
irrespective of its legal force, there are political advantages as well
as disadvantages in its continuation. Unquestionably we would pay a
political price in simply abrogating the treaty, as some urge. In
particular, we should not casually damage our political relationship
with Russia--in a way that simultaneously would damage their prestige
and make the Russians less cooperative with us. Particularly, this is
so given the presently disturbed relationship arising from differences
reflecting Russia's long-term association with Serbia.
Nevertheless, we must not allow ourselves to be precluded from
deploying suitable defenses by the treaty in its present form.
What I would suggest is that the United States move firmly toward
deployment of a suitable and adequate thin area defense preferably
within the framework of the treaty. This would require substantial
modification to permit a system architecture that could deal with the
emerging range of threat. But we must bear in mind that the Russians
have a much greater stake in the preservation of the ABM Treaty than do
we. It is that treaty--and other arms control agreements with the
United States--that provides much of Russia's continuing international
prestige. A modification of the ABM Treaty (as opposed to its
abrogation) which permitted the United States to deploy a thin area
defense in a manner that does not challenge a continuing Russian
retaliatory capability would seem to be in Russia's interest--
particularly so as Russia itself may come to be threatened by spreading
nuclear capabilities among rogue nations and others.
Yet in moving towards modification of the treaty, we must convey to
the Russians that we are firm in our commitment to deploy an efficient,
if limited, defense and that we must have treaty modification
sufficient to allow a flexible and adaptable architecture. To negotiate
for something less (which regrettably would be an easy temptation)
might leave us in that position of deploying a fixed, limited, and,
ultimately, a virtually token defense. Sufficient modification must be
our clear objective--not minimal modification that would leave us with
little more than a token defense.
6. In the period ahead, a limited missile attack on the United
States regrettably will become a growing possibility. It could come
from a variety of perpetrators. Because of the range and the novelty of
such possibilities, it will likely be difficult to achieve an early
assessment of missile buildup and pending attacks among the candidate
nations. We should, therefore, move with all deliberate speed toward an
effective defense of the United States against nuclear attack. But we
must also remember that such an attack need not come primarily from
ballistic missiles. Most notably, we must simultaneously be alert to
the proliferation of cruise missiles, and move toward an effective
defense against cruise missiles--which will likely constitute the next
turn in the road.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, thank you.
If I could call your attention to the last page of my copy
of your testimony, I will just quote a sentence back to you,
Mr. Secretary. You say, ``What I would suggest is that the
United States move firmly toward deployment of a suitable and
adequate thin area defense, preferably within the framework of
the treaty,'' the ABM 1972 treaty.
Would you explain that in your reference to ``within the
framework of the treaty?''
Dr. Schlesinger. Mr. Chairman, as you will recall, the
original treaty of 1972 called for two sites. In 1974, the
treaty was modified by agreement between the Soviet Union and
the United States to reduce that to one potential site. We, of
course, ultimately decided to have no sites.
But the treaty was modified in the past; it can be modified
in the future with the collaboration of the other party, in
this case, Russia.
We must bear in mind that a one site defense probably will
be inadequate for the growing array of threats, and we need not
be constrained, we should not be constrained, with limitations
on space based sensors. For example, even the limited defense
that we are talking about will depend upon SBIRS-LOW, the Space
Based Infra-red Satellite System. Otherwise, we will not be
able to detect in sufficient time the warheads that might be
attacking the United States.
Therefore, I think we need to modify the treaty to permit a
minimum number of sites, but sufficient to protect the
continental United States as well as Alaska and Hawaii and to
adjust our research and development plans and potential
deployment plans with regard to sensors so that we have a full
understanding of any threats that might be directed against the
That will require a substantial modification of the treaty,
but it should not be so substantial that it would deny to
Russia what the Russians clearly value, and that is the
continued existence of a retaliatory capability against the
United States--indeed, probably the only retaliatory capability
in the world, including China.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, what if the Russians prefer
not to renegotiate the ABM Treaty?
Dr. Schlesinger. That is what I referred to, Mr. Chairman,
when I said we must be very clear that we are firm on
deployment as we develop the technology. As I have indicated,
it is very much in the Russian interest to permit an adjustment
of the treaty, as we had in 1974, to adjust to new
circumstances. If the Russians are unwilling to do that, then I
think we have no alternative but to move toward abrogation.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, you referred on a number of
occasions in your testimony to the urgency here. In your
opinion, how long would you give the Russians to get serious
about negotiating the necessary change in the ABM Treaty before
you would say to the President we must move forward with or
without the Russians?
Dr. Schlesinger. Well, Mr. Chairman, ideally, I would start
now and I would put them on notice that we are developing
technology for a thin area defense and that it is not a threat
to their retaliatory capability; that we are determined to do
so and that the precise details will come later on as we know
more about the technologies that we develop. But we must put
them on notice now that that is the direction in which we are
going and we should not be equivocal about putting them on
I am fearful that we may go in with a kind of tenuous
``wouldn't you mind our adjusting the treaty somewhat,'' and
the Russians, under those circumstances, would be very much
inclined to say no. They must be clear in their minds that we
are determined to make that adjustment.
Within a period of I would hope 18 months we would have a
better feel for the technologies that we would exploit. Then we
could go to more precise definition of how that treaty should
Alternatively, we could say we want to have three sites and
we want to have freedom to explore any kind of sensors, whether
they are space based or ground based, and we could do that now.
That would provide greater latitude for any set of technologies
that we would choose to deploy.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, you have been involved over a
good many years in defense issues. You mention in your
statement that we must not limit ourselves to a technologically
limited base of options here.
Would you care to explain and enlarge upon that, because it
very much cuts through the issue with the Russians and all the
other dynamics here? How would we do that?
Dr. Schlesinger. That is quite correct, Mr. Chairman. The
danger in negotiating with the Russians is that we make a
limited adjustment, one time, that permits us to have a limited
defense that turns out to be a token defense that we deploy in
Alaska or in North Dakota at one site with a stringent
limitation on the sensors that we could employ.
If that were the case, we might be able to stop a missile
attack from North Korea, which will remain limited for some
I doubt that we would be able to stop even a limited
attack, let us say, from China, or an accidental launch from
Russia because they will be moving toward penetration aids. We
need to have a system sufficiently sophisticated that it can
deal with at least simple penetration aids by another country.
As you mentioned in your opening statement, there is the
whole problem of protecting against launch vehicles, launched
from ships offshore.
Obviously, if we have a system in Alaska and a ship is
moved off the coast of Mexico, that system will have very
limited capability to protect the United States. We need to
have a capability that looks in all azimuths.
Senator Hagel. With your current knowledge of the
technology available, do you believe that it is feasible that
we can, in fact, achieve some of the more limited dynamics of
what you are talking about here within a relatively short
period of time?
Dr. Schlesinger. We can achieve--I trust that we can
achieve a limited defense within a reasonably short period of
time if we are talking about 7 or 8 years to deployment.
Senator Hagel. Seven or 8 years to deployment?
Dr. Schlesinger. Seven or 8 years to deployment.
The problem that we face, I think, is that there must be
the capability for growth in that initially deployed system so
that we are not constrained to dealing with whatever the
limited threat that that initial system could deal with. That
is part of the problem of negotiating effectively with the
Russians or, if they won't play the game, ultimately moving
toward abrogation of the treaty.
Further, we don't have the technology at this time. The 6
most recent tests of the THAAD missile have been, to say the
least, disappointing. Before we begin to deploy, we should have
a firm grasp on the technology. Nothing would be worse, it
seems to me, than to spend a great deal of money on a
deployment of a system that turns out to fizzle, thus
disgracing the concept as well as wasting the money.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, what should we be doing with
the Chinese in this area of missile defense? Should we be
negotiating a treaty, bringing them into talks? How should we
be working with the Chinese?
Dr. Schlesinger. I think that, once again, we have to make
clear to the Chinese, and they are very reluctant to accept
this--far more reluctant, I believe than Russia, even though
China is not a signatory to the ABM Treaty and, therefore, does
not have the legal rights that Russia has--they are far more
reluctant to see this development because it would deny to them
the capability to use their missile forces against Japan,
Taiwan, Korea, and the like.
I think that we must recognize that in our deployments in
the Western Pacific we have much of our forces tied up in very
limited real estate, small bases that are highly vulnerable to
attack; and that, therefore, we need to protect those limited
bits of real estate against a missile attack; and that we are
not prepared, we should inform the Chinese, merely to
propitiate them and allow Okinawa, let us say, to remain
vulnerable to attack; that we believe that it is necessary, not
only from the standpoint of our own interests but from that of
the overall security and stability in Asia, for us, when we
have the technology, to deploy defenses; and that we would be
deploying defenses that would protect our bases in the Pacific
and would include in that protection of Japan, whether or not
they are pleased to hear that; and that it would protect South
Korea as well.
The delicate problem is the subject of Taiwan. I think that
this is a subject on which the least said, the better; that we
ought to continue to reiterate that, indeed, the United States
policy, as it has been since 1972, is a one-China policy; that
we continue to believe that the People's Republic of China and
the Republic of China will work out their differences
peacefully; and that we ought not to develop an articulated
Now in the circumstances, the Chinese will understand that
we, particularly if we deploy the Aegis system, have the
capability of providing a missile defense for Taiwan. But I do
not think we should ever say that. The Chinese would regard it
not only as a threat but as interference, as they say, in their
Senator Hagel. I suspect Ambassador Lilley will have
something to say about this as well.
If I could move a little way from China to the
subcontinent, where India and Pakistan reside and where we now
have new members of the club, Mr. Secretary, what kind of
policy should we be pursuing in regard to Pakistan and India on
their nuclear efforts?
Dr. Schlesinger. The policy should be to encourage them to
have safe retaliatory capabilities, protected retaliatory
capabilities, so that neither side might be tempted to strike
first to exploit the vulnerability on the other side.
I think that we should recognize the developments in South
Asia between India and Pakistan are, to a greater extent than
elsewhere, contained in South Asia. It is obvious, I think,
that the development of missiles and nuclear weapons by Iran
and/or Iraq would have much broader implications and could not
be contained within a limited geographic area.
Pakistan and India, to a large extent, are focused on each
other and, even though that development has disappointed us in
terms of the partial failure of our nonproliferation policies,
it is not as menacing as the nuclear and missile developments,
say, in North Korea. As North Korea acquires a nuclear
capability, I cannot see that the Japanese will disregard such
a development. They would then be tempted to move in that
In the mid-1970's, we headed off South Korea from
developing nuclear weapons. If North Korea has a nuclear
capability or missile capability, South Korea, too, would be
tempted. It would have the capacity for infectiousness.
Happily, in South Asia there is less capacity for
infectiousness of the region. Therefore, we ought not to be too
desperate or to pay too high a price to either of the parties
merely to get them to collaborate on, let us say, the
Nonproliferation Treaty or the CTB.
Senator Hagel. In your opinion, are we pursuing the correct
policy with North Korea in regard to oil, fuel, food, and
things that we are putting on the table in order to get entry
to their facilities?
Dr. Schlesinger. Well, it has its ironical aspects, Mr.
Chairman. In order to head off a 60-megawatt reactor, which is
capable of producing plutonium for several nuclear weapons, we
are providing 3,000 thermal megawatts over time, which will
have the capability of producing many, many nuclear weapons.
The premise of our policy has been that time is on our
side; that the North Korean regime might implode, collapse; and
that, therefore, they would never be in a threatening position,
let's say, in 2010.
It is an interesting premise, but there is no guarantee
that that premise is correct. In the last 5 years since we
signed the agreement with North Korea, it seems to me that the
premise has become increasingly questionable.
It was a trade. It was a trade that was pushed by the
Department of Defense on the premise that it was better to
freeze temporarily their move toward nuclear capabilities. And
in the process, we failed to sustain the IAEA, which we had
induced to make challenge, to demand challenge inspections of
That was a trade. I think it was pushed by Secretary Perry
at the time. It may have been a good trade at the time. It has
become more questionable, and I think that Secretary Perry's
new report, as a special envoy, will point to some of the
difficulties in that limited agreement because of the movement
of North Korea toward additional facilities that we do not
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, you mentioned a moment ago,
when we were talking about India and Pakistan, the CTBT. Do you
know if that is a useful treaty for dealing with the India-
Dr. Schlesinger. Well, no, in a word.
The CTBT has been based on a premise that is widespread in
the scientific community that other nations will develop their
nuclear capabilities or refrain from developing such
capabilities based on what the United States does; and that if
we limit ourselves in testing, then other nations will refrain
from testing and, therefore, presumably, developing nuclear
That is a wholly invalid premise. The motivation for other
countries to develop nuclear weapons has nothing to do with
whether or not we test. It has to do with their relations with
their neighbors. In the case of India, the Indians talk about
China as well as Pakistan. Pakistan clearly is concerned about
India, being in a conventionally much weaker position than
Whether or not the United States tests is totally
irrelevant. The notion that Saddam Hussein, Kim Il-sung or Kim
Jong-il will refrain from nuclear tests because the United
States has given them up is just, it seems to me, a misleading
Therefore, we ought not to believe that CTBT is an
effective anti-proliferation device. It is something that
developed in the 1960's, after the disappointments of the
Soviet return to nuclear testing, the 50- and 60-megaton
weapons that were tested in 1961. It led to the partial test
ban treaty. The desire to have a complete test ban treaty
acquired a momentum at that time that had some relationship to
the bipolar world of the 1960's and 1970's, but has very little
relationship to the set of motivations in this proliferating
world that we see today.
Senator Hagel. Thank you.
Senator Helms asked that I ask this question.
Would you recommend that the Senate adopt the
administration's proposed changes to the ABM Treaty relating to
multilateralization and demarcation?
Dr. Schlesinger. I think that that would be very
frustrating. I fear that it would be very frustrating.
Why is that? It's because I think that we have some
political advantage in continuing our relation with the
Russians; and that that would require, if we go ahead with a
missile defense, a Russian capability to say yes to
modification of the treaty.
It seems to me that when you throw in Kazakhstan, Belarus,
and Ukraine as parties to such a modification, there is the
possibility of manipulation. To prevent such modification, the
Russians can urge Belarus--whose relationship with Russia
reflects the fear in Belarus that the Russians are too damn
moderate--to thwart any such change in the treaty. It would
make it unduly complicated to change the treaty.
We have taken the position that Russia is the true legatee
of the Soviet Union with regard to strategic forces. And this
to spread out a negotiation by making all of these parties part
of the ABM Treaty would, in my judgment, be a mistake.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, may I ask you one additional
question? You can frame this any way you like.
Would you give this committee the benefit of your thoughts
on the situation in Kosovo? Anywhere you want to start or end,
we would be grateful for your words.
I am a little off from the intent and objective of this
hearing, but, actually, it did come up and, as you know, it is
very much a part of our relationship with Russia. What we are
doing there and what we may yet do has significant
Dr. Schlesinger. Foreign policy, by and large, is concerned
with the relationships amongst great powers.
Senator Hagel. Excuse me. Mr. Secretary, would you pull the
microphone a little closer, please?
Dr. Schlesinger. Yes. Foreign policy, by and large, is
concerned with the relationship amongst great powers. Russia is
down on its luck, but it may well come back as a great power
and it certainly is the most significant potential power in
Europe and potentially in Eurasia, as well, along with China.
It seems to me that the administration was quite correct
when it said that getting along with the Russians during its
first 6 years was a correct policy.
When Mr. Primakov was half way across to the United States,
at Shannon Airport he was informed that we were going to start
bombing the Serbs for whom the Russians have had a protective
attitude for at least a century and a half, as the Serbs
attempted to separate themselves from the Ottoman Empire. That
was a serious blunder on our part, to allow our relations with
a major power to deteriorate in this way.
Serbia has subsequently asked to join the Association of
Belarus and Russia, and we don't know where that will go. But
it is not a healthy sign from the overall standpoint of our
To the extent that we decided to move into the quarrel in
Kosovo, we should have thought through in advance what the
response was going to be on the other side and whether or not
we could achieve our objectives with the means that we had put
We did not. The result is that, when we started bombing,
this triggered the very outcome that we wanted to avoid--to
wit, the massive expulsion of Kosovars from Kosovo and the
spilling over of that conflict beyond the borders of
Yugoslavia. In the process, we also, at least temporarily,
immensely strengthened Milosevic within the country--not one of
It seems to me that we must decide what we wish to be the
outcome in Kosovo and to put together the means to achieve that
end. If we want to achieve the results that we started with,
that we started out asserting were our goals, then we must be
prepared to create a credible ground threat.
In the absence of a credible ground threat, Milosevic and
the Serbs will hunker down, I believe. They will absorb the
punishment. It will have a damaging effect ultimately within
There are those countries that sympathize with the Serbs,
including some of the new members of NATO. And it will
ultimately be divisive, I fear, unless we are prepared either
to move quickly to terminate it or to achieve ways of enforcing
At the moment, we seem to be hung up on neither, and we are
proceeding with a bombing response which will do immense damage
to the infrastructure of Serbia but which will not necessarily
cause Milosevic or the Serbs to yield.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, thank you.
Dr. Schlesinger. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Hagel. We are grateful for your contribution and,
as always, your insights. I am sure we will have occasion to
revisit not only this subject but many others.
Mr. Secretary, thank you.
Dr. Schlesinger. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Hagel. Now we will ask Ambassador Lilley and
Secretary Schneider to come forward and when they do, we will
Gentlemen, welcome once again. We have been joined, as you
can see, by our friend and colleague, the distinguished Senator
from Tennessee, Bill Frist. He will be poised to ask very
insightful, direct questions as we go along.
If we could, we will now ask Secretary Schneider for his
testimony. Then we will ask Ambassador Lilley and will then get
into some questions.
STATEMENT OF HON. WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, JR., FORMER UNDER
SECRETARY OF STATE FOR SECURITY ASSISTANCE, SCIENCE, AND
TECHNOLOGY, ADJUNCT FELLOW, HUDSON INSTITUTE, WASHINGTON, DC
Dr. Schneider. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I
appreciate the privilege of testifying before this committee.
As you know, I previously served as Under Secretary of
State and, subsequently, as chairman of the General Advisory
Committee on Arms Control and Disarmament in the Arms Control
and Disarmament Agency and more recently served as a member of
the Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the
United States, the Rumsfeld Commission.
This commission, as you know, delivered its report in July,
1998. The question of proliferation can no longer be thought of
as an isolated and far-off threat to the United States. The
burden of evidence available to the U.S. Government was
reviewed by the Rumsfeld Commission and presented to the
Congress last July.
Among the major conclusions of this congressionally
mandated study are these.
First, the threat to the United States posed by these
emerging capabilities of ballistic missiles and weapons of mass
destruction is more mature and evolving more rapidly than has
been reported in estimates and reports by the intelligence
Moreover, the warning times the United States can expect of
new, threatening ballistic missile deployments are being
reduced. Under some possible scenarios, including rebasing or
the transfer of operational missiles, sea or air-launch
options, shortened development programs that might include
testing in a third country, or some combination of these, the
United States might have little or no warning before an
operational deployment of ballistic missiles able to reach the
The surge in the proliferation of ballistic missiles and
weapons of mass destruction during the 1990's has created an
environmental fact for the United States' national security
policy for the next quarter century or more. Moreover, the
nature of contemporary ballistic missile proliferation and
weapons of mass destruction proliferation challenges many of
the underlying assumptions of policy, including the abstention
from the defense of U.S. territory from long-range ballistic
This posture is currently required under the provisions of
the ABM Treaty of 1972.
My testimony today will focus on proliferation related
developments in Iran and assess the implications of these
developments for U.S. security.
In starting out, I think it is helpful to try to get an
understanding of the nature of the contemporary proliferation
process because the process since the end of the cold war is
qualitatively different from that prior to the end of the cold
Before the end of the cold war, Russia was an effective
party to the nonproliferation regimes in place. Its interest
resided in containing rather than facilitating the spread of
the technology of weapons of mass destruction.
Multilateral export controls limited the access of
potential proliferators to scientific and industrial technology
and equipment pertinent to the development of ballistic
missiles and weapons of mass destruction. Moreover, the United
States and most other governments, apart from China, restricted
access to technology relating to weapons of mass destruction
and ballistic missile technology.
The end of the cold war brought about stark changes in
Russia and its incentives relating to nonproliferation
compliance. Export controls, especially multilateral controls,
largely disappeared as an effective counter proliferation
Regional rivalries created an interest in regional powers
deterring outside intervention in regional disputes. This
subject was referred to by Secretary Schlesinger during his
The existing nonproliferation regime has proven to be ill-
suited to the manner in which post-cold war proliferation has
taken place. Proliferators have not focused on obtaining the
most advanced technology. Instead, they have focused on
obtaining obsolescent but functional WMD and ballistic missile
Russia has economic incentives as well as policy incentives
to assist Iran and several other countries in acquiring weapons
of mass destruction and ballistic missile technology.
The absence of export control barriers to scientific and
industrial equipment relevant to weapons of mass destruction
and ballistic missile development has made this equipment
North Korea's successful development of long-range missiles
and weapons of mass destruction has made its program one of the
engines of proliferation. Its dispersion of manufacturing
technology to other countries has contributed to making
proliferation largely self sustaining.
The creation of large-scale weapons of mass destruction and
ballistic missile manufacturing facilities in North Korea,
Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan, has several profound effects for the
long-term outlook for proliferation.
First, this infrastructure will soon make these nations
largely independent of access to technologies from nations such
as China and Russia, who are now the primary suppliers. The
major proliferators have insisted on a substantial measure of
autarchy in WMD and missile production. They are not simply
buying missiles off the shelf. They will be producers.
Proliferation is now on the verge of being self-sustaining.
Second, the size of the infrastructure in place creates
incentives for producers to also become exporters. National
requirements will be met by a few years of production from the
local industrial base. To sustain production, these nations
will be obliged to seek export markets. Acquiring ballistic
missiles is the least cost approach to regional power status,
an opportunity many nations may seize with very negative
consequences for regional stability and peace.
Third, the impact of large manufacturing infrastructures
for WMD and ballistic missiles changes the scale of the problem
from a few ballistic missiles to hundreds in the next decade,
and perhaps thousands after 2010. Several proliferators are
profoundly hostile to the United States and its allies.
Bearing the nature of this proliferation problem in mind,
there are a few observations I would like to make specifically
with respect to Iran.
Iran is well suited to acquire a very substantial WMD and
ballistic missile force. Its acquisition of SCUD series missile
from North Korea during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq conflict helped
finance North Korea's development of longer range systems,
including what is now known as the SCUD-C, which has a 700
kilometer range, No Dong, which has a 1,300 kilometer range,
and the Taepo Dong-I and Taepo Dong-II, with an
intercontinental range with characteristics that depend on the
weight of the payload.
North Korea sold its No Dong missile to Iran, where it has
been upgraded with Russian assistance. The missile was launched
in July 1998 and will be deployed later this year.
At a September 25, 1998 military parade in Tehran,
President Khatami praised Russia for the assistance it provided
to Iran's missile program. The weapon can deliver a nuclear,
chemical, or biological or conventional payload to targets
throughout the Middle East and can reach targets throughout
Europe with a biological weapons payload.
Moreover, because the missile is mounted on a mobile
transporter-erector-launcher, it can be readily launched
covertly from a merchant ship. This technology is hardly new.
The United States launched a Polaris missile from a merchant
ship in 1962. The former Soviet Union also launched SCUD short-
range missiles from surface ships. The technique is well
Surface ship launch appears to be a likely alternative
option for several emerging WMD and ballistic missile States.
More recently, the Financial Times reported on April 16 on
the Pakistani Shaheen-1 missile, which was launched the
previous day, that the missile may be intended for sea launch.
The missile, with a 1 metric ton--that is, 2,200 pound--
payload, may be developed so that Pakistan can have a similar
capability to that which is deployed by India or that will soon
be deployed by India, which is a surface ship launched
The modern commercial technology, such as the INMARSAT
telecommunications satellite and the global positioning system
satellites diminishes the significance of the primary
operational limitations of sea-based ballistic missile systems
in the past--that is, communications with the ship and
The use of surface ship launched missiles may be especially
attractive to Iran. Iran tends to employ non-Iranian nationals
for some of its international terrorist operations. Iran has
used personnel from several States in the Middle East region to
diminish the risk of accountability for its support of
international terrorist operations.
The recent terrorist activities, including the Khobar
Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia and the East African embassy
bombings last year, were done without any country claiming
responsibility for these.
The option of a covert launch provides another alternative
for Iran to extend the geographic reach of its ballistic
missile force while diminishing the risk of retaliation against
its own territory.
Iran is developing longer-range ballistic missiles as well.
Iran has acquired rocket engines and advisory support from
Russia that will permit it to develop intercontinental range
missiles able to reach the United States from Iranian
territory. The technology is mature since it is based on the
German World War II V-2 liquid fuel technology. So little
testing is required.
This phenomenon of little testing was reflected in North
Korea's development of the No Dong missile. The missile was
successfully flown in May 1993 and has been in series
production since then.
Large numbers have been produced and, based on observed
evidence, it is quite reliable. The No Dong is used as the
first stage in North Korea's Taepo Dong-I missile, which was
successfully launched in a trajectory over Japan in 1998. The
Taepo Dong-I is capable of reaching U.S. territory with a
biological weapons payload. The Taepo Dong-II will be able to
reach the United States with a nuclear payload.
Iran has the components for the Taepo Dong system already
in its inventory in that the second stage of the Taepo Dong
missile is a SCUD missile. The first stage would be the No
Iran will begin its deployment of its variant of the No
Dong missile later this year, the Shahab 3. This will augment
its inventory of SCUD missiles. The missile is not accurate
enough to be usefully employed effectively with conventional
warheads. Thus, it is likely that it will use an unconventional
warhead--biological, chemical, or nuclear.
The details of the weapons program are not known. But as
the deployment of the Shahab 3 is imminent, it is likely that
Iranian authorities have already identified the missile's
Iran has previously employed missile delivered lethal
chemical agents in 1980 to 1998 in its conflict with Iraq. Even
without foreign assistance, Iran is capable of a missile
delivery of anthrax or smallpox derived biological weapons in
A more effective mode of biological agent delivery using
submunitions may also be available to Iran. This submunition
technology for biological agents is at least four decades old.
Submunition systems for biological agents were developed in the
Missile delivered submunitions filled with biological
agents were extensively developed and produced by the former
Soviet Union and continue to be available in Russia today.
Access to nuclear weapons is dependent on Iran's ability to
acquire special nuclear material. Foreign acquisition of such
material is unlikely to be observed by the United States.
We learned from experience in the 1980's that Pakistan
obtained a tested nuclear weapon design and a significant
quantity of special nuclear materials, in this case highly
enriched uranium from China.
This development permitted Pakistan to acquire a nuclear
capability without the necessity to conduct a nuclear test,
although it did so for apparently political reasons in response
to India's nuclear testing.
The Shahab 3 poses a threat to U.S. forces and allies
deployed in the Middle East region and to Europe, as well, if a
biological weapons payload is employed.
If the Shahab 3 is covertly deployed on a merchant ship, it
can then be employed against U.S. territory. Provisions of the
ABM Treaty prevent the United States from deploying missile
defenses against this threat. The proposed national missile
defense system is designed to have no capability to intercept
ballistic missiles with a range of less than 2,000 miles. This
is so to comply with provisions of the treaty.
The treaty prevents the use of theater missile defenses in
a national missile defense mode. Hence, it precludes deploying
our own theater missile defenses against a sea based threat.
Such defenses as the Patriot system would not be permitted
under the existing terms of the ABM Treaty.
Iran's missile force is poised for rapid growth. Russian
assistance to Iran has intensified since 1998. Iran's
production of the No Dong completes the building blocks for
It is likely that Iran will continue development of multi-
staged missiles, although some of these may be disguised as
space launch vehicles. The option is attractive for Iran and
may help preserve the ambiguity of its ballistic missile
In the case of space launched vehicles, only software and
payload changes are required to shift from a civil space launch
to a military missile. Moreover, any missile with sufficient
energy to deploy a payload into orbit around the earth also has
the capability to deliver payload to a target on the surface of
the earth at intercontinental range.
Finally, in this regard, a new channel of proliferation may
soon emerge if Russia obtains relief from existing arms control
limitations on the number of space launch sites it can create
outside of its own territory. Most of the ICBM's it developed,
manufactured, and deployed are used in modified form for space
launch application. The proliferation of such activities could
create yet another path for the proliferation of long-range
The ABM Treaty in its present form poses an obstacle to an
important policy objective of the United States, deterring Iran
from making further investments in long-range missiles.
Further, the provisions of the treaty prevent the United
States from deploying missiles against the two most plausible
forms of ballistic missile threats now available or that will
soon be available to Iran--covert, sea launch missiles and
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
[The prepared statement of Dr. Schneider follows:]
Prepared Statement of Hon. William Schneider, Jr.
iran's activities relating to ballistic missiles and weapons of mass
Mr. Chairman and distinguished Members of the Committee:
It is a privilege to have an opportunity to appear before this
committee. I previously served as Under Secretary of State (1982-86),
and as Chairman of the General Advisory Committee on Arms Control and
Disarmament. More recently, I served as a Member of the Commission to
Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States (the Rumsfeld
Commission) that delivered its report to the Congress in July, 1998.
The question of proliferation can no longer be thought of as an
isolated and far-off potential threat to the United States. The burden
of evidence available to the United States government was reviewed by
the Rumsfeld Commission and presented to the Congress in July 1998.
Among the major conclusions of this Congressionally mandated study are
The threat to the U.S. posed by these emerging capabilities
is broader, more mature and evolving more rapidly than has been
reported in estimates and reports by the Intelligence
The warning times the U.S. can expect of new, threatening
ballistic missile deployments are being reduced. Under some
plausible scenarios--including re-basing or transfer of
operational missiles, sea or air-launch options, shortened
development programs that might include testing in a third
country, or some combination of these--the U.S. might well have
little or no warning before operational deployment.
Proliferation-related developments can no longer be thought of as
an isolated or far-off threat that is of no immediate consequence to
U.S. security interests. The surge in the proliferation of ballistic
missiles and weapons of mass destruction during the 1990's has created
proliferation as an environmental fact for U.S. national security
policy for the next quarter century or more. Moreover, the nature of
contemporary WMD and ballistic missile proliferation challenges many of
the underlying assumptions of policy including abstention from the
defense of U.S. territory from long-range ballistic missile attack.
This posture is currently required under the provisions of the Anti-
Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty of 1972. My testimony today will focus
on proliferation-related developments in Iran and assess the
implications of these developments for U.S. security.
The Post-Cold War Proliferation Process
The process of proliferation since the end of the Cold War is
qualitatively different from the process of proliferation prior to the
end of the Cold War in 1991. Before the end of the Cold War, Russia was
an effective party to the non-proliferation regimes in place. Its
interests resided in containing rather than facilitating the spread of
the technology of weapons of mass destruction. Multilateral export
controls limited the access of potential proliferators to scientific
and industrial technology and equipment pertinent to the development
and manufacture of ballistic missiles and WMD. The United States and
most other governments (apart from China) restricted access to
information relating to WMD and ballistic missile technology.
The end of the Cold War brought about stark changes in Russia and
its incentives relating to nonproliferation compliance. Export
controls--especially multilateral controls largely disappeared as an
effective counter-proliferation instrument. Regional rivalries and an
interest by regional powers in deterring outside intervention in
regional disputes have stimulated an effort to acquire WMD and
The existing non-proliferation regime has proven to be ill-suited
to the manner in which post-Cold War proliferation has taken place.
Proliferators have focused on obsolescent, but functional WMD and
ballistic missile technology. Russia has economic and policy incentives
to assist Iran and several other countries in acquiring WMD and
ballistic missile technology. The absence of export control barriers to
scientific and industrial equipment relevant to WMD and ballistic
missile development has made such equipment widely available. North
Korea's successful development of long-range missiles and WMD has made
its program one of the engines of proliferation. Its dispersion of
manufacturing knowledge to other nations contributed to making
proliferation largely self-sustaining.
The creation of large scale WMD and ballistic missile manufacturing
facilities in North Korea, Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan has had several
profound effects on the long-term outlook for proliferation.
First, this infrastructure will soon make these nations largely
independent of access to technologies from nations such as China and
Russia who are now primary suppliers. The major proliferators have
insisted on a substantial measure of autarky in WMD and missile
production. They are not simply buying WMD and missiles ``off the
shelf''--they are or will be producers. Proliferation is now on the
verge of being a self-sustaining phenomenon.
Second, the size of the infrastructure in place creates an
incentive for producers to become exporters. National requirements will
be met by a few years of production from the local industrial base. To
sustain production, these nations will be obliged to seek export
markets. Acquiring ballistic missiles is the least-cost approach to
regional power status--an opportunity many nations may seize with very
negative confidence for regional peace and stability.
Third, the impact of large manufacturing infrastructures for WMD
and ballistic missiles change the scale of the problem from a ``few''
ballistic missile to hundreds in the next decade, and perhaps thousands
after 2010. Several proliferators are profoundly hostile to the United
States and its allies.
Proliferation Developments in Iran
Iran is well situated to acquire a very substantial WMD and
ballistic missile force. Iran's acquisition of SCUD-series ballistic
missiles from North Korea during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq conflict helped
finance North Korea's development of longer range systems including
what is now known as the SCUD-C (700 km. range), the No Dong (1,300-km.
range), and the Taepo-dong 1 and 2 (intercontinental range).
North Korea sold its No Dong missile to Iran where it has been
upgraded with Russian assistance. The missile was launched in July 1998
and will be deployed later this year. At a 25 September 1998 military
parade in Tehran, President Khatami praised Russia for the assistance
it provided to Iran's ballistic missile program. The weapon can deliver
a nuclear, chemical, biological, or conventional payload to targets
throughout the Middle East, and can reach targets throughout Europe
with a biological weapons payload. Moreover, because the missile is
mounted on a mobile transporter-erector-launcher (TEL), it can also be
readily launched covertly from a merchant ship. The U.S. launched a
Polaris missile from a merchant ship in 1962. The former Soviet Union
also launched short-range SCUD missiles from surface ships. The
Financial Times (April l6, 1999) reported on the first launch of
Pakistan's Shaheen-1 (600-km range) ballistic missile on April 15th.
The technique is well understood. Surface ship launch appears likely to
be an alternative launch option for several emerging WMD and ballistic
The Financial Times noted that the Shaheen-1, with a one metric ton
(2,200 lbs.) payload ``could be launched from a naval vessel.'' Such a
development may reflect Pakistan's effort to develop a counterpart
capability to India's surface ship-launched ballistic missile program.
Modem commercial technology (e.g. INMARSAT telecommunications and
Global Positioning System navigation satellites) diminishes the
significance of the primary operational limitations of sea based
ballistic missile systems in the past--communications with the ship and
The use of surface ship launched ballistic missiles may be
especially attractive to Iran. Iran tends to employ non-Iranian
nationals for some of its international terrorist operations. For
example, Iran has often used personnel from several states in the
Middle East region to diminish the risk of accountability for
supporting international terrorist operations. The option of a covert
launch provides another alternative for Iran to both extend the
geographic reach of its ballistic missile force while diminishing the
risk of retaliation against its own territory.
Iran continues to develop long-range ballistic missiles as well.
Iran has acquired rocket engines and advisory support from Russia that
will permit it to develop intercontinental range missiles able to reach
the United States from Iran. As the technology for these systems is
mature (the liquid fuel propulsion system is derived from the Germany's
World War II V-2 program), little testing is required. This phenomenon
was reflected in North Korea's development of the No Dong missile. The
missile was successfully flown in May 1993, and has been in series
production since then. Large numbers have been produced, and based on
observed evidence, is quite reliable. The No Dong is used as the first
stage in North Korea's Taepo-dong 1 missile--successfully launched in a
trajectory over Japan in August 1998. The Taepo-dong 1 missile is
capable of reaching U.S. territory with a biological weapons payload;
the Taepo-dong 2 will be able to reach the United States with a nuclear
payload. North Korea has stated publicly that it intends to export its
ballistic missile systems. Iran, as a buyer of its SCUD-series missiles
as well as the No Dong missile is a plausible candidate for the Taepo-
dong missile system as well.
Implications of Iran's Ballistic Missile Program for the U.S.
Iran will begin deployment of its variant of the No Dong medium
range ballistic missile, the Shahab 3 later this year, and will augment
its inventory of SCUD missiles. As the missile is not accurate enough
to be usefully employed with a conventional warhead, it is likely that
it will be used with an unconventional warhead--biological, chemical,
The details of its weapons program are not known, but as deployment
of the Shahab 3 is imminent, it is likely that Iranian authorities have
already identified the missile's warhead(s). Iran employed missile
delivered lethal chemical agents in its 1980-88 conflict with Iraq.
Even without foreign assistance, Iran is capable of missile delivery of
anthrax or smallpox-derived biological weapon payloads in bulk form. A
more effective mode of biological agent delivery using sub-munitions
may also be available to Iran. The technology for sub-munition delivery
of biological agents is at least four decades old. A sub-munition
system for biological agents was developed by the United States in the
late 1950's. Missile-delivered sub-munitions filled with biological
agents were extensively developed and produced by the former Soviet
Union, and continue to be available today in Russia. Access to nuclear
weapons is dependent on Iran's ability to acquire special nuclear
material. Foreign acquisition of such material is unlikely to be
observed by the United States. We learned from experience in the 1980's
that Pakistan obtained a tested nuclear weapon design and a significant
quantity of special nuclear material (highly enriched uranium) from
China. This development permitted Pakistan to acquire a nuclear
capability without a necessity to conduct a nuclear test (though
Pakistan did so in 1998 in response to India's nuclear testing).
The Shahab 3 poses a threat to U.S. forces and allies deployed in
the Middle East region and to Europe if a biological weapons payload is
used. If the Shahab 3 is covertly deployed on a merchant ship, it can
then be employed against U.S. territory. Provisions of the ABM Treaty
prevent the United States from deploying missile defenses against this
threat. The proposed National Missile Defense system is designed to
have no capability to intercept ballistic missiles with a range of less
than 2,000 miles to comply with the Treaty. Treaty provisions
preventing the use of theater missile defenses in a national missile
defense mode preclude theater missile defenses (such as Patriot).
Iran's ballistic missile force is poised for rapid growth. Russian
assistance to Iran has intensified since mid-1998. Iran's production of
the No Dong completes the building blocks for multi-stage long-range
missiles. Iran possesses the SCUD missile--the second stage of the
Taepo-dong 1 ballistic missile. The Taepo-dong 1 ballistic missile has
intercontinental capabilities with a biological weapons payload. North
Korea has successfully demonstrated that it is able to implement
missile stage separation--the enabling capability for intercontinental-
range missile development. If it shares this technology with Iran--
perhaps North Korea's largest and most loyal customer--the range of
targets Iran could hold at risk will grow significantly.
It is likely that Iran will continue long-range multi-stage
ballistic missile development, although some missile flights will be
disguised as ``space launches.'' This option is attractive for Iran in
creating ambiguity about its military missile development program. Only
software and payload changes are required to shift from a civil
``space'' launch to a military missile. Moreover, any missile with
sufficient energy to deploy a payload into an orbit around the earth
has a capability to deliver a payload to a target on the surface of the
earth at intercontinental range.
In this regard, a new channel for proliferation may soon emerge if
Russia obtains relief from existing arms control limitations on the
number of space launch sites it can create outside of its own
territory. Most of the ICBM's developed, manufactured, and deployed by
the former Soviet Union are used in modified form for space launch
applications. The proliferation of such activities could create yet
another path for the proliferation of long-range ballistic missiles.
The ABM Treaty in its present form poses an obstacle to an
important policy objective of the United States--deterring Iran from
making further investments in long-range ballistic missiles. Further,
the provisions of the Treaty prevent the United States from deploying
missile defenses against the two most plausible forms of ballistic
missile threats available now or will soon be available to Iran--covert
sea-launched missiles, and land-based ICBM's.
Senator Hagel. Mr. Secretary, thank you.
STATEMENT OF HON. JAMES R. LILLEY, FORMER U.S. AMBASSADOR TO
CHINA, THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE, WASHINGTON, DC
Ambassador Lilley. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I have four caveats as I proceed. First, others have well
defined the strategy of missiles and the missile defense, so I
am not going to get into that. I have been asked to have a
narrow focus on a very large and complex subject, Chinese
intentions and the role of missiles in this.
I have gone back in time because this is the only way we
can begin to understand what the Chinese might be up to. Bear
with me as I deal with the rhetoric because there are millions
of words spoken. So I must be selective.
Having said that, I think, first of all, as for Chinese
intentions, what have they actually said? I chose their
February 1992 law passed by the Standing Committee of the
National People's Congress, which stands today, I think, as a
singular statement of what the Chinese are up to. The scope of
this is defined as the first island chain around China. It goes
from the Senkaku Islands off Japan, it goes down to Taiwan, and
it takes over the South China Sea, claiming exclusive
jurisdiction over the Spratlys.
What this law means, of course, is that it puts China into
potential confrontation with Japan over the Senkakus because
Japan claims them, too, and we have a security treaty with
Japan which the Japanese say includes the Senkaku Islands.
Second, as for Taiwan, we have the guarantees in the Taiwan
Relations Act. China has said this is their own territory. They
claim it is theirs and that we are interfering in their
internal affairs when we sell weapons or support Taiwan.
Finally, in the Spratly Islands, they contest Vietnam,
Malaysia, Brunei, the Philippines and Taiwan, all of whom claim
them. The Chinese say these are simply ours. They have also
reserved in this piece of law the right to use hot pursuit and
military means to deal with foreign powers that challenge them.
I will make one caveat on this, actually, the U.S. has said
that the sea lanes through the Spratlys were of critical
interest to the United States. In a statement in 1995, ASEAN,
the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, politically
complained to China about its predatory moves down there, and
the Chinese have backed off to a degree because the power of
the Seventh Fleet, along with ASEAN's political power, were
sufficient to deter them. I think this is an important
precedent to keep in mind as you go through this analysis.
Second, this is not words. Statements in their law and
other statements the Chinese have since made to support their
law are important but we must also look at their acquisitions.
Their acquisitions back this up, whether it is the Sukhoi-27
from Russia, a state-of-the-art fighter/bomber--they will
probably have 200 of them in the next 5 years--their kilo class
submarine and their 100 SRBM's, short-range ballistic missiles,
which are alleged now to be deployed along the Fujien coast
They have conducted in July 1995 and March 1996 live fire
exercises, which have demonstrated their DF-15 or M-9 nuclear
capable missile off the north and south coasts of Taiwan.
Certainly what emerged from this particular exercise, by the
exercises, I should say, was that China's amphibious force, its
use of aircraft, its use of naval forces, its tri-service
coordination were weak. The one powerful instrument they had
were missiles. They recognize that the missiles not only caused
economic dislocations in Taiwan, but also they claim
intimidated the Seventh Fleet carrier battle groups that came
off the east coast from going through the Taiwan Strait.
This is a claim the Chinese made.
I then deal with the Chinese sizing up of the American war-
fighting psychology. They have come to the conclusion--and this
is amply demonstrated in Michael Pillsbury's book--which is
based on Chinese documents and Chinese view of future warfare--
they make the proposition quite clear that the United States
will not take losses. They look at Somalia, they look at
Kosovo, and they look at other countries where we have engaged
our forces. We go for hi-tech and no losses. Therefore, this
gives them a distinct advantage in dealing with the United
Hence, they give you the veiled warning that the United
States would not sacrifice Los Angeles for Taiwan. And now that
we know they have the capability to reach Los Angeles, we have
to take this seriously.
Then I indulge briefly in a sketchy walk-through history,
because I think we have to look at the way they fought their
wars since 1949, to try to get a look into their mentality--
what checks them, what works, what does and does not work for
them. I think you start off with Korea in 1950 as instructive.
Certainly, in the first stages of that war there was
surprise, overwhelming force, favorable terrain and they scored
great victories. They drove the 8th Army and the 1st Marine
The second lesson of the war was when they got into
positional warfare against an enemy with better weapons, they
lost. Matthew Ridgeway gave them a very punishing lesson, that
they could not stand up to. Then they compromised in a major
way in the Korean War. I think that is a lesson.
Again, I think in the Taiwan Strait they have consistently
tried to use bluff and bluster first to achieve their ends.
They were able to do this in 1954. They failed in 1958 and they
failed in 1995 and 1996. It did not work. It was a particularly
egregious failure in 1958, when they had to back off from a
threat to Taiwan, mainly because the Seventh Fleet moved in and
the Taiwan Air Force shot them out of the air. It was something
like 35 planes to 1. They were no match for the Sabre Jet with
the air-to-air Sidewinder missile.
So they backed off. They undertook on-day/off-day artillery
firing to save face. But people know that it did not work.
Again, I say in 1995-96, when the Nimitz went through in
December 1995 and when the two carriers came in 1996, the
Chinese got the message. They were no match for the Seventh
So they backed off from this and they planned the next
If you look at 1969 and the way they faced the Soviet
Union, they were driven by the passionate nationalism of the
Cultural Revolution. They conducted military operations against
the Soviet Union which were, in many ways, almost bizarre. But
the point is they got their clock cleaned. The Russians had
superior force, they beat up on them, they drove the Chinese
back. What did the Chinese do? They turned to us for a
strategic partnership with us against the Soviet Union. And we
took it up immediately for the opening to China.
I think 1974 is interesting, January 1974, because it was
the kind of operation you have to look out for these days. They
seized the Paracels in a lightening attack. They moved in
amphibious forces, Hainan class gunboats. They took the
Paracels and their timing was perfect.
The United States was pulling out of a collapsing Vietnam,
the Soviet Union had not moved in yet, and they had a window of
opportunity. They struck quickly, decisively, and won. They
took over the Paracels. Now they are building airstrips there.
They again punished the Vietnamese in 1988 in the Spratlys
and they started to buildup, as you know, a People's Liberation
Army facility on Mischief Reef down in the Spratlys.
So we see them moving from a surprising success, pushing
forward for the next step. However, in 1979, it was
instructive. They took on the Vietnamese in a clumsily executed
land war. The battle tested, hardened Vietnamese military
inflicted heavy casualties. The Chinese retreated. They said
they gave the Vietnamese a bloody nose, delivered a message,
and then pulled back. And they found their army was lazy, fat,
poorly trained, and their use of command and control was poor.
What emerges from all this is that China tries to know its
own strength and its opponent's weaknesses. It can adjust very
quickly when it faces superior forces and the enemy has a
strong will. But it also moves quickly and decisively when the
I think we have to keep this in mind in Taiwan.
Then I get briefly to the role of missiles. First, the
Chinese see definitely an ally in the anti-missile defense
people in the United States. They try to link up with them.
I think since 1995, they have been trying to shape the
debate on missiles. They have said the problem is not our
missiles, it is our missile defense system. They have been able
to divert the Americans into focusing on that. Look at the
argument we are having today on ABM.
It is not so much for Chinese missile deployments as it is
our reaction to it. The Chinese have been rather successful
because we have heard a chorus of voices sounding off against
missile defense directed against the Chinese. The Chinese
quickly follow this with a very effective device. They say if
you deploy theater missile defense, this is a make or break
issue in the Chinese-American relationship. That's it--you have
gone back on the commitments you made in 1971-72, Nixon-
Kissinger, that you would not work with Japan and Taiwan to
form a defense system against us, and that is precisely what
you are doing. This is intolerable to us. You said you would
not do this. We affirmed this in the three communiques. This is
intolerable American intervention which will only increase the
chances for Taiwan independence and will cause China to perfect
and expand its own missile forces. That is their argument.
Third, the Chinese have taken direct aim at national
missile defense and theater missile defense by insisting that
the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, which they have not signed,
be maintained and strengthened. This is a means to curtail our
ability to deploy weapons against them.
I notice that the Carnegie Endowment for International
Peace distributed Sha Zukang's statement on this in February of
this year. It is a clear, tough, hard statement which says
don't deploy antimissile defense.
It is instructive, when you look back briefly in history,
you see that one of the successful efforts that the Chinese
made with their collaborators in the United States was to block
the FX for Taiwan in 1981. They marshalled forces. They said at
that time that the sale of an F-16 or an F-5G to Taiwan would,
in fact, break the relationship.
Hysterical memos came out of our bureaucratic establishment
and we backed off. We did not get new fighter planes sold to
Taiwan for another 10 years. And they did not really complain
It is interesting that it was at a time in 1992, when the
Chinese needed us. They had seen the results of Desert Storm.
They wanted to make contact with our military. They were
willing to accept the F-16 sale because it was more important,
as Deng said, to have the American relationship than to fight
over a single issue.
So it is a question of how we handle this. There is also
another aspect of the way they manage the U.S. relationship. It
is the old adage--when capable, feign incapacity. Put the word
out--China's defense budget is only $9 billion, it is much
smaller than Japan's, Taiwan's, Korea's, ours. Ours is at $250
billion and China only at $9 billion.
But, of course, they are dissembling. We know their budget
is at least four times as large. At the same time, the argument
is used--and President Clinton used this on April 7 in his
press conference in the Mayflower--we have 7,000 nuclear
weapons, they have 24, what is the problem?
There is no problem. We overwhelm them. Why are we arguing
about our threat? There is no threat.
So we dismiss the threat as minimal. What it does not take
into consideration is the way they look at weapons. They don't
look at them the way we do. They are not trying to match us
missile for missile. They have a concept of asymmetrical
They hit our vulnerabilities. They know that our cities are
vulnerable. They have used this against the Russians--force de
frappe in the 1970's. The U.S. has many more than China does,
but the USSR would never lose Irkutsk or Vladivostok.
This is a psychological ploy that puts one on the defensive
The Chinese also have documented that they are willing to
take huge population losses in any kind of war.
They have said, as Mao is alleged to have said, we can lose
300,000 million people in a war with Russia; or, we know, for
instance, that in the Great Leap Forward, 30 million Chinese
died of starvation because of Mao's social engineering.
We have to take this seriously.
I just might add on Kosovo, Kosovo is instructive in one
way for us on this. If we let Milosevic know that we are not
going to use ground forces in Kosovo in advance, he is going to
take much more decisive action. If we let the Chinese know that
there is no missile defense out there, their missiles will be
built up because it will give them leverage to force Taiwan to
the negotiating table on their terms.
Again, I say in my epilogue that China is a great
civilization of culture and art. It should be a country that
goes by international rules of trade, the rule of law across
the board, that expands its electoral base, that opens up its
system and that deals with its problems on its periphery in a
peaceful way. I think this is what we should aim for.
There is the clear emphasis on economic priorities now in
China. This is being challenged because of the economic turn-
down. Some Chinese propose turning to military means. But there
is a very powerful force in China that wants to be in the World
Trade Organization. In Premier Zhu Rong-ji's visit here the
whole strategic-military arrangement was downplayed in favor of
Even our own President neglected to use the words
constructive strategic partnership in both his press conference
in the Mayflower and his joint press conference with Zhu.
Anybody knows that a strategic partnership does not exist. It
is just a word game.
The Chinese are against NATO expansion, they are against
our position in Kosovo, they are against the Japanese-American
Security Treaty, which is the cornerstone of our strategy in
Asia, they are against our position on Taiwan, and they
sometimes have not been helpful in our position on North Korea.
So, I end up with the old Sunzi adage that the real
strategy is to win every battle without fighting. Those who
simply win every battle are not really skillful. Those who
render other armies helpless without fighting are the best of
all. The best victory is when the opponent surrenders of his
own accord, before there are any actual hostilities.
It seems to me, when I read your S. 693 on enhanced
security cooperation with Taiwan, there was one element in
there that I think was particularly important. I think, as
Secretary Schlesinger said, to get into a real contest with the
Chinese right now on TMD is not worth our attention.
But it seems to me that it is clearly spelled out in that
piece of draft legislation that the software concerning
communications, planning, education, and training, are very
important to establish now.
These are not make or break issues.
When we sent our carriers in there in March 1996, we had
really no contact with Taiwan. This could have led to a
disaster. It seems to me it is essential to establish an
understanding with Taiwan about future contingencies and
planning to deal with those contingencies. This is the sort of
thing which you can carry out, I think, without really
challenging the PRC relationship.
What we do about Aegis class destroyers built into a THAAD
system to defend Taiwan, whether we sell Taiwanese the
destroyers to do it themselves it seems to me is a decision
that is way down the road and only after there is actually an
antimissile system that works.
[The prepared statement of Ambassador Lilley follows:]
Prepared Statement of Hon. James R. Lilley
the chinese challenge and the role of missiles
First, what is the Chinese challenge? Does the United States have a
genuine ``constructive strategic relationship'' with China? How modern
are Chinese strategic rocket forces and how does China intend to use
them? Is to consider China any kind of a threat a self-fulfilling
prophecy? Are American strategic forces so overwhelming that we do not
have to worry about China? Is Taiwan a flash point or a model for
1. Chinese intentions: Let us look at what the Chinese themselves
say authoritatively and publicly:
The Law of the People's Republic of China (PRC) on the Territorial
Sea and Its Contiguous Zone adopted at the 24th Meeting of the Standing
Committee of the Seventh National People's Congress on February 25,
1992 explicitly states.
The territorial sea of the People's Republic of China is the
sea belt adjacent to the land territory and the internal waters
of the People's Republic of China. The land territory of the
People's Republic of China includes the mainland of the
People's Republic of China and its coastal islands; Taiwan and
all islands appertaining thereto including the Diaoyu Islands
the Penghu Islands; the Dongsha Islands; the Xisha Islands; the
Zhongsha Islands and the Nansha Islands; as well as all the
other islands belonging to the People's Republic of China. The
waters on the landward side of the baselines of the territorial
sea of the People's Republic of China constitute the internal
waters of the People's Republic of China.
The sovereignty of the People's Republic of China over its
territorial sea extends to the air space over the territorial
sea as well as to the bed and subsoil of the territorial sea.
Foreign ships for non-military purposes shall enjoy the right
of innocent passage through the territorial sea of the People's
Republic of China in accordance with the law. Foreign ships for
military purposes shall be subject to approval by the
Government of the People's Republic of China for entering the
territorial sea of the People's Republic of China.
What this law means is the Spratly Islands (also claimed by
Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Brunei) belong to the PRC. Taiwan, which
has security guarantees in the Taiwan Relations Act, belongs to the
PRC. The Diaoyu or Senkaku Islands which are also claimed by Japan
belong to the PRC. China has thus staked out claims on the first island
chain surrounding its most valuable east coastal area from Tianjin to
Guangzhou which puts it into potential confrontations with ASEAN, the
U.S., and Japan.
Article 3 establishes PRC sovereignty over the territorial sea and
air space, and establishes procedures for foreign navy ships to pass
through its territorial waters.
Article 8 says the PRC ``has the right to take all necessary
measures to prevent and stop non-innocent passage,'' and in Article 14
this includes the ``right of hot pursuit against foreign ships.'' It
specifically states this includes ``for military purposes.''
Prior to 1985, Chinese strategy was defensive, against a single
superior force to its north, the Soviet Union, and this required a
temporary partnership with the U.S. In 1985 the Chinese switched its
strategy to hi-tech warfare against states on its periphery. It has
since given first priority to its strategic rocket forces, its navy,
its air force, and its Rapid Reaction Units. This was to support its
objective of extending its sovereignty over contiguous areas to its
east and was done for both offensive and defensive reasons.
Offensively, the PRC seeks to undermine the American bilateral alliance
system stretching from Korea in the north to Australia in the south by
labeling it an anachronism left over from the Cold War. The Chinese
characterize these alliances as a series of arrows aimed at China which
will spur on the arms race and destabilize the area. China also seeks
to neutralize the military bases of this U.S. alliance system by
tactics of naval warfare. As Captain Shen Zhong Chang in his article on
21st Century Naval Warfare puts it, ``long-range precision strikes by
warships, carrier based aircraft and missiles are needed. Submarines
will make missile attacks on air targets. Long-range combat, missile
combat, and air force cover will be crucial.'' In 1996 PLA General Ding
Henggao stated that precision guided missiles (conventional and nuclear
armed) were the most important single system in China's future defense
Chinese procurement and production reflects its priorities. Sukhoi-
27, long-range strike aircraft procured from Russia are state of the
art--200 will become available in the next five years. Kilo class
submarines, Sovremennyy class destroyers with the deadly Sunbeam
torpedoes, air refueling, and of course ICBM, MRBM, SRBM, and cruise
missiles. Over 100 SRMBs (DF-15 or M-9s) are deployed opposite Taiwan,
according to the latest media reports. The number could reach over 650
missiles by 2005 according to what some newspapers say is a classified
DOD study on TMD. The July 1995 and March 1996 Chinese live fire
exercises in the Taiwan Strait area proved that Chinese aircraft
performance, tri-service exercise, amphibious attempts were primitive
and non-competitive. The Chinese trump card emerged as its missiles.
They were accurate, threatening, and were the main cause of economic
dislocations in Taiwan. If the threat could be increased 50 fold, the
potential for intimidation would also be increased. The presence of a
large number of missiles opposite Taiwan--especially if some were fired
into the sea-lanes off Taiwan--would represent leverage to get Taiwan
to the bargaining table on PRC terms. The missiles would not even have
to impact on Taiwan itself.
The Chinese also had to raise the stakes for the United States.
This would be done in two ways. A launch of Chinese missiles could have
the potential to destroy a U.S. carrier battle group--the capability to
do this would oblige the Americans to re-calculate the costs of close-
in intervention. In March 1996, the PRC claimed its threat of missile
attack kept our carriers out of the Taiwan Strait. Second, a long-range
``force de frappe'' would have the potential of taking out an American
city. This strategy was used on the Soviet Union by the PRC in the
1970s. Although the USSR had many times the number of missiles China
had, the Soviets would have to think hard before sacrificing the city
of Irkutsk to Chinese nuclear attack. So much more for the Americans
who have demonstrated their fear of casualties (for instance, in Iraq
in Desert Fox, in Somalia with our pullout, and now in Kosovo). The
Chinese raised this question in 1996: Would the Americans sacrifice Los
Angeles over a long distance turmoil off Taiwan?
The Chinese have also systematically improved their monitoring of
U.S. naval movements in the Pacific by setting up a major PLA space
tracking station in Kiribati Islands (Tarawa, to World War II buffs).
PRC historical war fighting--many battles on the periphery: A quick
review of Chinese combat history bears out the strategy spelled out in
1985 of wars on the periphery. China has fought often, sometimes
clinically sometimes passionately, with mixed results of both success
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