Aegis, THAAD, Patriots and GBI

Don’t want to steal Shawn’s thunder as he is working up an article on THAAD, but this is a nice little graphic showing the defense of the area: U.S. can Intercept North Korean ICBMs with 36 Deployed Interceptors

We do have THAADs deployed in Hawaii, Guam, South Korea and Alaska (the map does not show them in Hawaii, South Korea nor Alaska). The U.S. Army has five THAAD batteries that are part of the 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade.

There are only 4 GBI’s (ground based interceptors) in Vandenberg. There is some question over the ability of a THAAD to intercept an ICBM (vice an IRBM), but we will let Shawn discuss that. Not sure how many Aegis systems we have in the area, but as they are sea based, it could several and they can move. Again, not sure about their ability to intercept an ICBM (Intercontinental Ballistic Missile vice the much smaller IRBM, Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile). Korea is currently threatening Guam with four IRBMs. They most likely do not yet have a nuclear warhead with a working ballistic vehicle (BV) connected to an ICBM, but may be less than a year away from this capability.

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Christopher A. Lawrence
Christopher A. Lawrence

Christopher A. Lawrence is a professional historian and military analyst. He is the Executive Director and President of The Dupuy Institute, an organization dedicated to scholarly research and objective analysis of historical data related to armed conflict and the resolution of armed conflict. The Dupuy Institute provides independent, historically-based analyses of lessons learned from modern military experience.
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Mr. Lawrence was the program manager for the Ardennes Campaign Simulation Data Base, the Kursk Data Base, the Modern Insurgency Spread Sheets and for a number of other smaller combat data bases. He has participated in casualty estimation studies (including estimates for Bosnia and Iraq) and studies of air campaign modeling, enemy prisoner of war capture rates, medium weight armor, urban warfare, situational awareness, counterinsurgency and other subjects for the U.S. Army, the Defense Department, the Joint Staff and the U.S. Air Force. He has also directed a number of studies related to the military impact of banning antipersonnel mines for the Joint Staff, Los Alamos National Laboratories and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation.
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His published works include papers and monographs for the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation, in addition to over 40 articles written for limited-distribution newsletters and over 60 analytical reports prepared for the Defense Department. He is the author of Kursk: The Battle of Prokhorovka (Aberdeen Books, Sheridan, CO., 2015), America’s Modern Wars: Understanding Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam (Casemate Publishers, Philadelphia & Oxford, 2015), War by Numbers: Understanding Conventional Combat (Potomac Books, Lincoln, NE., 2017) , The Battle of Prokhorovka (Stackpole Books, Guilford, CT., 2019), The Battle for Kyiv (Frontline Books, Yorkshire, UK, 2023), Aces at Kursk (Air World, Yorkshire, UK, 2024), Hunting Falcon: The Story of WWI German Ace Hans-Joachim Buddecke (Air World, Yorkshire, UK, 2024) and The Siege of Mariupol (Frontline Books, Yorkshire, UK, 2024).
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Mr. Lawrence lives in northern Virginia, near Washington, D.C., with his wife and son.

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One comment

  1. The graphic is missing our “pre-boost-phase” defense: Navy attack subs off the coast with Tomahawks. The Nork ICBM requires lengthy preflight liquid fueling on an exposed above-ground launch pad.
    By now, I’m sure the Navy keeps at least a couple SSN off the coast at all times.

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