• Germany's news in English
 

NATO gives OK to European missile shield

Published: 21 May 2012 08:35 GMT+02:00

The decision was made by 28 of the world's most powerful leaders at the NATO summit in Chicago. It should be up and running before 2020 and protect Europe from missiles fired up to 3,000 kilometres away – roughly where Iran is.

Initially a US warship carrying missiles will be installed near Turkey in the Mediterranean, followed by an early-warning radar system at the US air base in Ramstein. Further bases are planned for Spain, Romania and Poland.

"Missile defence is indispensable. We are faced with real missile threats," NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said on the eve of the summit.

"Against a real threat we need a real defence," he said, adding that 30 states are known to either have or seek ballistic missile technology.

The decision was not greeted warmly by Russia though, as Moscow fears the system could neutralise its own nuclear shield. The country's government quickly called for joint control over the system and for NATO to sign a legally-binding guarantee that it is not aimed at Russia.

But NATO rejected both demands, insisting on keeping two separate systems and refusing to sign a legally-binding document.

"This is not a project targeted against Russia, but a project we want to push forward with Russia in the interest of Europe's security," said German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle. "And therefore the door for Russia will stay open."

The United States has tested missile defence technology for years but analysts have questioned whether the shield is a full-proof defence against incoming rockets from rogue states.

AFP/DPA/The Local/jcw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

09:34 May 21, 2012 by yourkeau
Austerity? Of course, not for military.
15:31 May 21, 2012 by boyk99
Why do we need to waste Millions on this? The imaginary enemy Communism is no longer there so why have this.

Is it just to keep the weapons industry in business.

Money would be better spent on Schools, Hospitals etc etc.
16:53 May 21, 2012 by Albertaclipper
Oh my, do I hear higher prices for natural gas coming Germanies way. The war machine in the US has an insatiable appetite. Follow the money trail and you will find out why the world needs unproven missile defence systems. I'm kind of disappointed in Germany. I thought they were smarter than that.
18:29 May 21, 2012 by DOZ
So NATO (I mean America/Canada) Sacrificed Germany to be the 1st Target in a Nuclear Strike by Russia. Good Pot eh, Germany. I think the the word "Sucker" is in order.
21:02 May 21, 2012 by Englishted
@DOZ

Sucker indeed if you don't think Russia would have to roll over Western Europe at the start of a World War lets hope we never find out .

But unlike you I still know we in Europe still should be thankful to all Yanks that came to the aid of freedom in WW2 many who did not return stateside.
23:28 May 21, 2012 by Mr. Wonderful
This is the same old story, europe pretends it has to be persuaded to protect itself and the US ponys up most to the cash to do it in the end. Its a hustle thats worked before so why not work it now against a very real danger from a new direction.

Of course the Russians are making rude noises. Now their allies Iran and Syria will be countered by the new missle system making the Russian's job of threatening the west more difficult in the future.
04:25 May 22, 2012 by reallybigdog
@ Englishlisted

Yes we should be thankful as many of those soldiers were German and by far the largest ethnic majority in the US at that time and remain so today!
08:29 May 22, 2012 by MattyB
@ Mr. Wonderful

You hit the nail on the head. It's the US that will once again pony up the cash and resources to protect Europe. Russia is anyting but peaceful. I'm not saying they are going to launch WWIII, or try to conquer Europe again, but their intentions in this world are less than peaceful. Anything that makes them squirm, and puts them in thier proper place, is worth it. Especially now with dictator-in-all-but-name Putin back in charge.
14:46 May 22, 2012 by Sastry.M
Appears to be a repeat program of earlier 30's to defend against the Soviet menace and correct the inevitable mistakes of victories in ww2.in common with incompatible allied friendship from the East.

Hope Germany many not receive the first nuke from the East in case of real hostility while her western allies could protect themselves with preemptive strikes on those nations from where WMD's threatened their security flying out from mirages of hot sands.

Indeed the Russians, animosity and ideology apart in my opinion, did have more respect for defeated Germans, whose failure benefited them during the last war for gaining a better foothold by Russians in middle Europe.
19:42 May 25, 2012 by yuri_nahl
Yes it's the same old story. Only one country has been starting wars and bombing the heck out of people since the end of WW II, and yes it's that country who's name just popped into your head, and it does not begin with "R".
00:15 May 27, 2012 by raandy
This shield will protect Europe from missels 3000 Kms away roughly where Iran is.

Why is Iran always the bad guy? I have not seen or read where Iran has attacked anyone and why would they? The shield is not to protect Europe from Iran maybe from Russia, as the Russians have claimed all along.

I would like to see how and who is paying the Lions share of this expensive and questionable project.
17:16 May 27, 2012 by Sastry.M
May a continuation of supporting a new campaign for extending 'extortable economic excellence' in view of the dwindling residues against Afghan anti terrorism under auspices of the Un-Serviceable leadership.
Today's headlines
Kindergarten wage negotiations fail
Photo: DPA

Kindergarten wage negotiations fail

The public services union Ver.di announced on Monday evening that negotiations over a pay increase for Kindergarten teachers had failed. Strikes will start at the end of next week and go on for an indefinite period. READ  

Deutsche Bank chief goes on trial in Munich
Jürgen Fitschen (left) goes on trial in Munich today. Photo:DPA

Deutsche Bank chief goes on trial in Munich

Deutsche Bank co-CEO Jürgen Fitschen is one of five defendants in a trial starting Tuesday accused of giving false testimony in a long-running legal battle with the defunct Kirch media group. READ  

Regensburg diocese looks into abuse claims
The administrative head of the Regensburg diocese Michael Fuchs.Photo: DPA

Regensburg diocese looks into abuse claims

The diocese of Regensburg announced on Monday it is cooperating with the victims' organisation White Ring to investigate sexual and physical abuse at the Domspatzen Choir, Die Welt reported. READ  

JobTalk Germany
Graduates desperate to work for car giants
BMW are the most attractive employer for business and engineering graduates. Photo: DPA

Graduates desperate to work for car giants

A survey published on Monday shows that the car industry is the most attractive place of work for German business graduates and engineers alike. READ  

Language fails
Minster wows crowds with Denglisch
Gerd Müller, left, with UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon to his right. Photo: DPA

Minster wows crowds with Denglisch

Development Minister Gerd Müller recently captivated crowds at the Global Citizen Earth Day in Washington, D.C. with his enthusiastic - if erratic - English. The speech has since gone viral. READ  

Arms firms struggle to meet ethics mark
A Leopard 2 tank made by Germany's Krauss-Maffei Wegmann. Photo: DPA.

Arms firms struggle to meet ethics mark

A report released on Monday by Transparency International UK found that German arms companies had a spotty record in their ethics and anti-corruption programmes. READ  

Chancellor's office 'knew' of US economic spying
An 18-meter-across satellite dish at the BND's Bad Aibling listening post. Photo: DPA

Chancellor's office 'knew' of US economic spying

Chancellor Angela Merkel's office has known since 2008 of US economic espionage targeting European companies such as Airbus but did not react, Bild said Monday, citing intelligence agency documents. READ  

Munich toddler safe after late-night adventure
Munich streets in the dead of night. Photo: DPA

Munich toddler safe after late-night adventure

A two and a half year-old toddler was found wandering through the streets of Munich by police in the early hours of Monday morning. Luckily he was return unharmed to his relieved parents. READ  

Public pitch in to find refugee home arsonists
A set of keys found at the scene of the crime. Photo:DPA

Public pitch in to find refugee home arsonists

After police made a public appeal for information in the arson attack on a refugee home on a television programme on Sunday evening, more than 30 members of the public got in touch. READ  

Greece crisis
Merkel and Tsipras have 'positive' phone chat
Merkel and Tsipras meet in Brussels on 23 April. Photo: DPA

Merkel and Tsipras have 'positive' phone chat

Athens will resume talks with its creditors Monday, a Greek government source said, after Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras spoke on the phone with Chancellor Angela Merkel. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Features
Smart kids all want to work for BMW
National
Arms firms get a 'must do better' mark on ethics
Sport
Bayern's anticlimactic 25th Bundesliga win
Gallery
German beer day: take the tour
Features
Off to Norway at 18 km/hour
Shutterstock
Sponsored Article
10 things you didn’t know about Zagreb (and why you should go)
Gallery
The smileys Germans love to text
Sponsored Article
What expat parents should ask before choosing a school
National
Expats face Monday deadline to register to vote for UK election
Politics
A Greek learning politics in Germany
Features
The battle of the "Gates of Berlin"
National
Germany's favourite baby names of 2014
National
Germany's 'very poor' lobbying record
National
VIDEO: Mario Draghi suffers anti-ECB confetti attack
Politics
Merkel's 15 years at the top of German politics
Features
Spice up asparagus season with The Local's serving suggestions
Travel
Lowest of the low: how woman exploited Germanwings crash
Sport
Football and the €30,000 firework
Technology
Why scientists oppose killer robots
National
Germanwings co-pilot 'searched suicide info'
Technology
Electrifying 'Ostalgia'
National
Which city is Germany's worst for drivers?
National
'Cannibal cop' gets 8 years
Can the 'nightmare' of a pilot downing a plane be prevented?
National
LIVE: Co-pilot suspected of crashing plane
Pupils mourn lost classmates
National
Freed after 25 years on death row
National
Cologne Cathedral returns from space
Features
Paddy's Day, Berlin style
Is your workload 'out of control'? You're not alone...
National
Why east Germans are happy to get it on on camera
National
What would you do with a 250-year-old pretzel?
Features
Just why is the German flag Schwarz, Rot, Gold?
Business & Money
Getting German workers and bosses thinking positive
National
Uplifting thoughts to get you through the last week of winter
National
Who wants the Olympics more - Hamburg or Berlin?
National
Last-minute drama of Germany's Eurovision 2015 entry
National
German photographer takes world's top prize
Features
Meet the woman getting Germans to drink more – and better – beer
Gallery
Get inspired for International Women's Day with German heroes
Green party proposes first-ever cannabis legalization plan
Gallery
In pictures: Germany's seven most livable cities
National
Singapore canes Germans for train graffiti
Politics
Surprise! Germans love feeling like they run the EU
Politics
Anger over plan to show women what men earn
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

7,170
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd
?>