NATO, Russia to link tactical anti-missile systems.

NATO and Russia said on Wednesday they intend to boost…

NATO and Russia said on Wednesday they intend to boost efforts to develop a joint system to protect their troops from attack by short-range missiles.

Neither Russia nor NATO face imminent threats from such battlefield weapons. But cooperation in this field is seen as opening the way for the former Cold War rivals to work together on developing a much wider anti-missile system designed to protect Europe and North America against Iran’s nascent long-range missile capability.

The Theater Missile Defense System used now by some NATO nations is based on upgraded versions of the U.S. Patriot anti-aircraft missiles. Russia has its own S-300 Gladiator short-range system.

The short-range battlefield systems are separate from President Barack Obama’s proposal for a much more sophisticated ballistic missile defense system for Europe. NATO nations are likely to approve that at a summit next November in Lisbon, Portugal.

NATO has already urged Moscow to join into the wider, territorial missile defense system, identifying Iran’s missile program as a threat to both Russia and NATO’s 28 member states.

“More than 30 countries have or are developing ballistic missiles, not all of whom are friends. Iran is an obvious example,” NATO spokesman James Appathurai said.

Source: Forbes AP

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