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«Bernd W. Kubbig Kontakt: Deutsche Stiftung Friedensforschung (DSF) Am Ledenhof 3-5 D-49074 Osnabrück Fon: +49.(0)541.600.35.42 Fax: ...»

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Moskaus auf die Stationierung von Radarsystemen oder Abfangraketen in Zentraleuropa:

Was geschieht, wenn sich Russland entschließt, derartige Pläne verhindern zu wollen und daher seine Beziehungen mit Peking intensiviert, den Waffenhandel – auch im Raketenbereich – mit „Problemstaaten“ ausbaut, Rüstungskontrollabkommen ignoriert, eigene Rüstungsbemühungen weiterhin erhöht und seine Raketen mit Nuklearsprengköpfen gegen strategische Ziele in Polen oder Tschechien richtet? Zum anderen kommen ökologische Risiken hinzu, die mit dem Abschuss eines atomaren, biologischen oder chemischen Sprengkopfes über europäischem Gebiet verbunden sein dürften.

Darüber hinaus zeigt der Forschungsbericht zu bearbeitende Forschungsfragen auf. Sie konzentrieren sich auf das Konfliktpotenzial, das mit dem erhöhten Raketen- und Weltraumpotential aufstrebender Mächte (in wirtschaftlicher und technologischer Hinsicht) verbunden ist. Brasilien, China, Indien und der Iran sind hier zu nennen. Zudem sollte die Forschung eine zentrale Frage beantworten: Welche Rolle kommt Raketenabwehrsystemen im Zusammenhang mit raketenfreien Zonen zu – würden sie die Entstehung solcher Zonen begünstigen oder blockieren? Abschließend legt der Forschungsbericht nahe, dass das Wissen der im Sammelband 4 vertretenen Experten eine optimale Basis für die Einberufung einer Multilateralen Studiengruppe zu einer raketenfreien Zone im Nahen Osten/Persischen Golf ist.

4 Hintergrundanalysen zu neueren Entwicklungen im Bereich der Raketenabwehr finden sich im Internet-Projekt „Ballistic Missile Defense Research“, in: http://www.hsfk.de/abm.

1. The Research Design: Comparing Missile Defence Policies of 16 Democracies 5 1.1 Missile Defence – Still Relevant, Still Controversial With the unilateral abrogation of the American-Soviet/Russian Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty of 1972 by the George W. Bush administration in 2002, a new phase in the history of missile defence (MD) began. 6 When the Republican Bush government came to power in January 2001, the long period of consensus building on MD in the United States came by and large to an end. Terminating the ABM Treaty was, under those domestic constellations, the logical step since the principal aim of that agreement – to forbid the deployment of a continental shield – was not compatible with the opposite goal of the National Missile Defense Act of 1999, passed by both Houses of Congress and signed by President Clinton into law in July 1999. When the treaty ceased to exist in June 2002, the American-Russian disputes about the fate of the bilateral agreement ended.

The supporters of a determined MD policy, who had prevailed in the controversies, regarded the bilateral agreement as harmful to US interests, since in view of the changed security environment the United States needed in the first place to deploy a continental shield as a means of countering the increasing proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) – atomic, biological, and chemical weapons – as well as of ballistic missiles. This continental umbrella was to become part of a global defence architecture which would protect America’s allies and interests as well. The multi-layered shield would consist of theatre missile defence systems (TMD) in two variants: for regional or nationwide protection or in terms of point defence for the protection of soldiers who were conducting their military activities in WMD hostile environments.

Since the US-Soviet/Russian dimension dominated this entire policy field, it is not surprising that the bulk of the rich MD literature has been devoted to the East-West aspects and above all to the United States. 7 The special focus on the US was due to the fact that it has been the major player whose policies in this field are relatively easily accessible for research purposes. The debates about all variants of MD throughout its history after the 5 I am indebted to two anonymous reviewers of this research report as well as to Axel Nitsche, Mirko Jacubowski, Alexander Wicker, Martina Glebocki, and Sven-Eric Fikenscher as well as to David Garrick for their helpful comments on earlier drafts of this study. I also wish to thank two anonymous reviewers of an earlier and shorter version of this study which was published as the ‘Introduction’ of the Special Volume of ‘Con-temporary Security Policy’ on ‘The Domestic Politics of Missile Defence’, op. cit. All authors who are subsequently mentioned without the titles of their contributions are part of this Special Volume.

6 As far as the terminology is concerned, missile defence (MD) and ballistic missile defence (BMD) are used interchangeably as broad terms. MD was introduced by the George W. Bush administration, while BMD was used by the preceding administrations. MD/BMD is composed of National Missile Defense (NMD) referring to the American continent and of TMD (theatre missile defence) meaning point defence (protection of soldiers/individual buildings or small areas); sometimes TMD is used by various actors such as NATO in the sense of regional defence. Unless otherwise indicated, the term regional defence refers to the protection of wide areas (which for small countries such as Israel, Japan and South Korea could mean a nation-wide shield) or even of a region such as Europe. In a clever move, the term NMD was abolished by the Bush administration for political reasons, as it did no longer want to be the target of criticism by its allies, who feared two asymmetrical zones of security favouring the protection of the American continent.

7 It is not possible to do justice to the huge quantity of studies and articles. A reliable point of access to the literature is

for instance to check the corresponding list of publications in ‘Arms Control Today’. A comprehensive list of references can be found in the bibliography of Bernd W. Kubbig, Wissen als Machtfaktor im Kalten Krieg. Naturwissenschaftler und die Raketenabwehr der USA (Frankfurt am Main/New York: Campus, 2004), pp. 676-717; see also:


Second World War have often been intense, emotional, dichotomous, and ideology-laden.

Even attempts of a principally comparative nature which examined the MD issue area beyond the antagonism between Moscow and Washington resulted in a dichotomous constellation of America versus Europe. 8 With the end of the ABM Treaty the major political and academic controversies within the United States ended, too. The discourse changed. For many institutes and lobby organisations the fight was over and they turned to other issues. MD disappeared from the headlines of the newspapers and became a subject of more normal political discussions. MD continued to be widely noticed only when a test had failed or when the budget was up for consideration in the American Congress.

However, the United States and Russia have been only part of the MD story. Now that the bilateral perspective of the MD issue has become obsolete, its multinational – in fact global – character has more clearly come to the surface. Although in many ways connected to the United States, the MD-related activities in several countries have developed their own dynamics, and they have preceded the George W. Bush era as well as the impulses that this MD-committed administration has given way to, so far. The authors of the DSF-sponsored project 9 − involving proponents, sceptics, and critics of (all or specific) MD variants alike – aim to provide a more differentiated picture by pursuing a fresh and pluralistic approach.

Covering basically the time-span of the George W. Bush era since 2001, their analyses deal with the MD policies of 14 countries in addition to the US and Russia.

1.2 The Comparative Approach – Reflecting the Specifics and the Complexity of MD Policies In the era of globalisation a comparative country-based approach seems outdated – at first

glance at least. But that is yet what the 16 case studies of this project do. They give answers to the following three research questions, namely:

• how the MD policy in each country has developed as a response to the proliferation problem in the context of the broader foreign and security policy,

• how it is located in the overall domestic setting, and

• how it can be explained.

The contributions have been part of a project which aimed at providing research results on the specifics of the particular country in the issue area of MD for decision-makers and the interested public. This policy-oriented objective of transferring expertise on a politically relevant, and in several cases contentious subject was the decisive criteria for selecting the countries, (actually only Australia and Taiwan are missing, while Italy and Spain are less important), and methodological reasons did not play a role; 10 the second yardstick was the countries’ status of being a democracy.

8 See Colin S. Gray, European Perspectives on U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense (Fairfax, VA: National Institute for Public Policy, 2002), available at: http://www.nipp.org/Adobe/europe.pdf.

9 The project was funded by the Deutsche Stiftung Friedensforschung (DSF, German Foundation for Peace Research).

10 The two most prominent comparative concepts are not needed and inapplicable, respectively. The ‘structured, focused comparison’, mainly developed by Alexander George, is not needed, since this collection of contributions includes − with the exceptions of Australia and Taiwan − all relevant democracies. See on this Alexander L. George and Andrew Bennett, Case Studies and Theory Development in the Social Sciences (Cambridge/London: MIT Press, 2005.) The ‘fuzzy-set/qualitative comparative analysis’ developed by Charles Ragin focuses on two juxtaposed dimensions, whereas the MD policies examined in the 16 democracies consist of eight essential aspects, as Such a country-based approach does not need to be anachronistic at all, provided that the democracies are not treated as insulated entities. In fact, the contributions of the Special Volume on ‘The Domestic Politics of Missile Defence’ put the domestic processes systematically into the international context for several reasons: The individual democracies respond to security challenges from the regional or global environment; cooperate with other democratic nations in this policy field; are active for instance in multilateral regimes such as the Missile Technology Control Regime or strive for international solutions to combat the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and missiles as possible means of delivery. The explanatory factors offered by the authors to explain the MD policy in their respective countries can in part be found on the international level. (Comparing the MD politics of 16 countries by 17 experts from 14 different nations from almost all regions is in itself organisationally and conceptually an – admittedly small – globalised endeavour.) Nevertheless, the major emphasis of the contributions is on the domestic scenery with respect to both comparing and explaining the individual MD policies of the 16 democracies.

These states are not treated as unitary actors, even if the executive branch is the constitutionally granted major centre of action which actually implements MD policy. The domestic setting has proved to be a viable level of analysis in many policy fields (including MD, as this project would like to show), if it is not reduced to the executive branch or parliament as the major elements of the political system.

Therefore, the comprehensive and differentiated examinations of the domestic settings in each individual country follow the well established research tradition of domestic politics (or domestic structure) and its indisputable analytical results. 11 It allows for the identification of the crucial dimensions of comparability, while at the same time giving the authors enough leeway in presenting (and explaining) the individual MD policies in the context of the traditions of their political and strategic cultures. (Foreign) political culture is understood in most contributions (usually more implicitly than explicitly) in two ways: First, in a broad sense as the major foreign policy orientation(s) of the given country, including its preferences for a specific foreign policy setting (unilateral, bilateral or multilateral), the instruments used (ranging from diplomacy via sanctions to military means) as well as for the objectives and world order visions. The terms strategic (or security) culture are often used in this project to describe the rules and views of the major actors mainly regarding the relationship between defensive and offensive weapons in the context of deterrence and arms control. The likewise central term of self-understanding (identity) is also often used as a synonym for the basic foreign policy orientations with the global role of a given country usually included.

In addition, the comparative approach with the focus on the domestic setting allows us to take the power and discourse constellations of the major organisational and institutional actors into consideration. This regards the societal level, the political system and the relations between them, including those between the executive and legislative branches or between both of them and military firms; as a densely knotted network of determined actors with vested interests, such a structure would amount to a military-industrial complex (MIC). The debates (if there were any) serve as an analytical instrument to open the ‘black mentioned below. See Mathias Koenig-Archibugi, Explaining Government Preferences for Institutional Change in EU Foreign and Security Policy, International Organization, Vol. 58, No. 1 (Winter 2004), pp. 137-174. I wish to thank Wolfgang Wagner for drawing my attention to the second approach.

11 See my presentation of German and American representatives and their achievements in: Kubbig, Wissen als Machtfaktor im Kalten Krieg, op. cit., pp. 45-52.

box’ of the country by displaying the domestic structure as well as the scope, intensity, and (contentious or consensual) dimensions of the MD issue.

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