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U.S. Says Russia Cannot Stop Missile-Defense Plan

April 4, 2007 -- A senior Pentagon official says the United States will go ahead with plans for a missile-defense shield in Central Europe even if Washington fails to allay Russian concerns over the plan.

Eric Edelman, undersecretary of defense for policy, said the United States wanted to cooperate with Russia and that he was still "very hopeful" the two would reach an understanding.

But he said if talks failed, the United States would not allow Russia to "dictate what we do bilaterally with other countries."

Russia has strongly objected to the plan to put a radar system in the Czech Republic and missile interceptors in Poland.

But the United States says the shield would pose no threat to Russia and that it is meant to guard against what it says are potential attacks from "rogue states" such as Iran.


The Proliferation Threat

The Arak heavy-water plant in central Iran (Fars)

BENDING THE RULES. Henry Sokolski, executive director of the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center, told an RFE/RL-Radio Free Asia briefing on January 9 that the West is hamstrung in dealing with Iran and North Korea because of the way it has interpreted the international nonproliferation regime to benefit friendly countries like India and Japan.


Listen to the entire briefing (about 90 minutes):
Real Audio Windows Media


Iran, North Korea Present Proliferation Challenges

Tehran Watches As North Korea Tests Global Resolve

Rogue Nuclear Programs Threaten New Arms Race

Why Shouldn't Pyongyang Join Nuclear Club?