Strategic Weapons: March 16, 2001


Just days after British Prime Minister Tony Blair confirmed that Britain would indeed participate in the planned US missile defense system, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said in a television interview that his country would support the US move under certain circumstances and might even pay to be part of a missile defense system that could protect Europe. The U-turn was couched in diplomatic vagaries about "studying scenarios" and "discussing specific needs" but it is significant that this was the first time a German leader had not rejected the idea outright. British Prime Minister Blair had reportedly told Schroeder that President Bush has already decided to build a missile defense system and that the Europeans could no longer hold any hope of stopping such a program.--Stephen V Cole 


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