Russia’s recent tests of ballistic missiles are clear signs Moscow is making good on announced threats to prepare preemptive strikes on U.S. missile defenses, a senior House Republican disclosed this week.
Rep. Michael Turner (R., Ohio) stated in a June 12 letter to senior Obama administration officials that he is also concerned Russia appears to be taking steps to abandon a 1980s treaty banning intermediate-range missiles.
“I am deeply concerned about Russia’s recent provocative tests of new ballistic missiles, as well as the apparent complete absence of response and engagement by the Obama administration,” Turner stated in a letter sent Tuesday to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.
The tests are indicators that Russia appears to be following through with threats to deploy weapons capable of conducting preemptive attacks on U.S. missile defenses in Europe, said Turner, chairman of the House Armed Services strategic forces subcommittee.
Additionally, Russian missile developments “are clear evidence by Russia of plans for its withdrawal from the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty,” he said.