democratizing GIS
Home   Store   Free GIS   Education   Free Shapefiles   Census   Weather   Energy   Climate Change   News   Maps   TOPO   Aerial   GPS   Learn GIS

DOWNLOAD SHAPEFILES: Canada FSA Postal - Zip Code - U.S. Waterbodies & Wetlands - Geographic Names - School Districts - Indian Federal Lands
Zip Code/Demographics - Climate Change - U.S. Streams, Rivers & Waterways - Tornadoes - Nuclear Facilities - Dams & Risk - 2013 Toxic Release Inventory TRI

ANWR Arctic National Wildlife Refuge; What is at stake; removed USFWS website; photos, maps, descriptions

tools for survival plans Maps Food Water Health Gardening Energy Housing Security Communications Livelihood

Money Making Tips Work from Home Make Money Used Lumber & Building Materal Beginner's Guide Buy/Sell Gold Electronics & Computer

GIS Shapefile Store - for Beginners & Experienced GIS Users Alike. Geographic Names Information System, Nuclear Facilities, Zip Code Boundaries, School Districts, Indian & Federal Lands, Climate Change, Tornadoes, Dams - Create digital GIS maps in minutes.

Toxic Release Inventory TRI Shapefiles

Canada FSA Postal Code Shapefile

GNIS Shapefiles 2,000,000+ Points

Nuclear Energy Facilities in the U.S.

Download Zip Code with Demographics Shapefiles

Download U.S. Streams & Rivers Shapefiles

Download Water Body & Wetland Shapefiles

Download Zip Code Boundary Shapefiles

Download School District Shapefiles

Download Indian & Federal Land Shapefiles

Download Climate Change Shapefiles

Download Tornado Shapefiles

Download Dams & Risks Shapefiles

Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Didn't find what you are looking for? Email me and I'll find it for you.

Progressive Links

Federation of American Scientists

Physicians for Social Responsibility

Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility

Union of Concerned Scientists


Reader Supported News

Common Dreams


Huffington Post

Media Matters

Think Progress

Grist Environmental News

Climate Shift Blog

MapCruzin Consulting
Data Research and GIS Specialists.

GIS Tutorials

GIS Basics

GIS Terminology

Of Interest

Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Maps

Climate Shift - The effects of climate shift on the future of planet earth and its inhabitants.

Right to Know or Left to Wonder?

Hazardscapes - Toxic and Nuclear Risks in your backyard.

War & Environment

Worst Case Scenarios: Terrorism & industrial chemicals.

A Hole in Our Missile Defense System by Theodore A. Postol
Fair Use Statement


<-- Return To 21st Century Warfare

See Also: M.I.T. Physicist Says Pentagon Is Trying to Silence Him and links to more about Postel and the missile defense coverup.

Source: Common Dreams

Published on Saturday, June 15, 2002 in the Boston Globe
A Hole in Our Missile Defense System
by Theodore A. Postol

WHAT WOULD you do if you had a missile defense system that couldn't tell a warhead from a balloon decoy? If you're the US Missile Defense Agency, you'd classify the data about missile defense tests to hide this fatal flaw.

In May of 2000 I wrote a letter to the White House that described how the Missile Defense Agency had doctored results of National Missile Defense tests to hide the fact that they could not tell the difference between simple decoys and warheads. I also described how the agency had altered its entire test program to hide the flaw. Two General Accounting Office reports issued in March of this year verified the facts I provided to the White House. The agency responded to my letter by claiming that it was classified, and it engaged in multiple attempts to stop me from revealing that its claims amounted to scientific fraud.

In one of these attempts, the agency tried to enlist the help of MIT's president in order to seize research papers from my office, and in another, it sent three agents to deliver a letter to me that was classified ''secret.'' The letter contained nothing more than publicly available information deemed classified by the government so that the agency could claim that I would be violating security agreements if I continued to speak about this matter of national security.

Now the agency wants to have the authority to, in effect, classify the fact that it cannot tell warheads from decoys. It claims that the nature of the decoys that experts know would easily confuse its defense will now be classified.

The intent of this ploy has nothing to do with national security. It is an admission that the only way it can save its unworkable missile defense from reviews that will kill it is to hide information from the public.


The current National Missile Defense interceptor tries to identify warheads and decoys by ''looking at them'' with infrared eyes. Because the missile defense is essentially using vision to tell which objects are decoys and which are bombs, this technique is no more effective than trying to find suitcase bombs at an airport by studying the shape and color of each suitcase.

All of the objects that are seen by the missile defense are in space, where there is no air-drag to cause light decoys to slow up relative to heavy bombs. In addition, because there is no air-drag, it is possible to wrap the bomb in light material and make it look like a decoy. The possibilities for changing the visual appearance of bombs and decoys in the near vacuum of space are virtually endless.

After the first two tests in 1997 and 1998, the agency learned that decoys shaped like nuclear warheads - and even balloons with stripes on them - could not be distinguished from actual warheads. The agency responded by removing these decoys from all subsequent flight tests. In one of the flight tests, the agency claimed a success in telling warheads from decoys that was beyond expectations.

Later on, General Accounting Office investigators found that the sensor in that test had failed to perform and that the claims of success could not possibly have been true.

When the Department of Justice and the Department of Defense inspector general were investigating the false claims of success for fraud, the agency used researchers at MIT Lincoln Laboratory to create a bogus study that had the effect of misleading the investigators.

In yet later tests the agency used a balloon that was intentionally designed to be 10 times brighter than the bomb and claimed that the fact that it could tell the difference between the bright and dim objects meant it could tell warheads from decoys.

It neglected to explain that it had to know in advance that the brighter object was a decoy, and if the warhead were placed inside a large balloon it would then be indistinguishable from the empty decoy balloon.

The agency has no technical program for solving this fundamental problem. It has also been unable to provide any credible scientific evidence or analysis to show that it can ever solve this problem. So what it proposes to do is to classify the fact that the targets it is flying have been preconstructed in ways that will allow it to tell one from another.

This misuse of the classification system to hide the fact that the National Missile Defense System has no credible scientific chance of working is a serious abuse of our security system.


A missile defense system cannot work unless it is based on sound science. Classifying the fact that there is no sound science that can be used to make this white elephant fly is a disservice to our democracy and the American people.

Theodore A. Postol is professor of science, technology, and national security policy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

� Copyright 2002 Globe Newspaper Company

See Also: M.I.T. Physicist Says Pentagon Is Trying to Silence Him and links to more about Postel and the missile defense coverup.

<-- Return To 21st Century Warfare

Didn't find what you are looking for? We've been online since 1996 and have created 1000's of pages. Search below and you may find just what you are looking for.

Michael R. Meuser
Data Research & GIS Specialist is an independent firm specializing in GIS project development and data research. We created the first U.S. based interactive toxic chemical facility maps on the internet in 1996 and we have been online ever since. Learn more about us and our services.

Have a project in mind? If you have data, GIS project or custom shapefile needs contact Mike.

Contact Us

Report Broken Links

Subscribe for Updates

Follow on Facebook
News & Updates

Find: Maps, Shapefiles, GIS Software & More

MapCruzin Blog for updates, questions and answers
Blog Updates

More Blog Updates


Google Earth Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) Maps
Lester Brown's Plan B 3.0
State GIS Shapefiles, Maps & Resources
GIS Shapefiles & Maps
GIS Programs, Tools & Resources
Free World Country & Regional Maps
GIS / GPS Careers and Job Positions
Disease Outbreak Maps
Extreme Weather & Disaster Maps
Free World Maps from the CIA Factbook
Arctic National Wildlife Refuge ANWR Maps
Oil and Gas Maps
Africanized Honey Bees
Renewable Energy Potential Maps of the United States
Terrorism Maps
War Maps
Google Maps
Weather Maps
GPS Resources
Historical Maps of the World
Google Earth
Library of Congress American Memory Map Downloads
Toxic Chemical Pollution Maps
Climate Change Maps
Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) Maps
Census Shapefiles
World Maps


Environmental Justice
Data Sources
Greenwash & JunkScience
Statistical Resources
Wireless Dangers
Surviving Climate Change
Global Right-To-Know
Creating Living Economies
Books of Note
Toxic Klamath River
Federal Lands Maps
TRI Analysis
TRI Webmaps
EnviroRisk Map Network
Community-Based Research
Right-To-Know or Left to Wonder?
Chemical Industry Archives
21st Century Warfare
National Parks and Public Lands
Trade Secrets/Toxic Deception
GIS Books
Our Projects
Other Projects
1999 Archive Environews
Environmental Books
Environmental Links
Redwood Coast Information
Recycle, Salvage, Reuse

Shapefile Store
Free GIS Software
Free Map Downloads
Free Shapefiles
Free Remote Sensing
Free Topo Maps
Free GIS Tutorial
Free GPS

About MapCruzin - Cookies, Privacy, Fair Use and Disclaimer - Advertise on

Copyright © 1996 - 2019 Michael Meuser, All Rights Reserved
MapCruzin is a Pop-Up Free Website -- Best Viewed With ANY Browser