2011年6月21日星期二

“星球大戰之子”基地約克郡終於預備開張

“星球大戰之子”基地約克郡終於預備開張
'Son of star wars' base in Yorkshire finally ready to open
Peace campaigners slam secrecy over $10bn Menwith Hill project that puts UK in line of fire.
和平活動家猛擊保密對超過100億美元的Menwith山項目,使英國在火線中。
Jamie Doward
guardian.co.uk,
Saturday 18 June 2011 19.33 BST
Translation by Autumnson Blog
The radomes at the US base in Menwith Hill where the defence shield inspired by Ronald Reagan's 'star-wars' will be launched. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images
在Menwith山的美國基地的天線罩將快啟動,那裡的防禦盾是由朗奴列根的“星球大戰”所啟發。 攝影:克里福隆/ Getty圖像

A "star wars" inspired defence shield that will alert the US to the launch of ballistic missiles is expected to be operational from a North Yorkshire airbase before the end of the year.
一個由“星球大戰”啟發、將警報美國去發射彈道導彈的防禦盾,預計將在年底前從約克郡北的空軍基地開始運作。
The Space Based Infrared System is seen as the successor to Ronald Reagan's unrealised "star wars" programme, which would have detected Soviet missiles and shot them down using lasers.
空基的紅外系統被視為朗奴列根未實現的“星球大戰”計劃的繼承,那會已檢測到蘇聯的導彈和使用激光將它們射低。
The new system, which has cost more than $10bn, has taken almost two decades to build and has been subject to numerous delays and cost overruns.
新系統的成本超過100億美元,已花去將近二十年建設,並已受到眾多的延誤和成本超支。
The imminent completion of the project at the RAF Menwith Hill base near Harrogate has revived fears that space is in danger of becoming militarised, with Britain in the vanguard.
在Menwith山近哈羅蓋特的英國皇家空軍基地的即將竣工項目,重燃擔心太空正處於軍事化的危險之中,以英國成為先鋒。
"I find this disturbing to say the least," said a local Labour MP, Fabian Hamilton. "It's as if they are saying this is a place in the US and you are foreigners. But hang on one second, this is a bit of Yorkshire. We have no idea what they are doing. If they are developing star wars we have a right to know."
“我覺得至少可以說這是令人不安的,”一位當地的工黨議員費邊漢密爾頓說。 “正如他們說這是美國的一處地方,而你是外國人。但等一秒,這是約克郡的一塊,我們不知道他們在做什麼,如果他們正在發展星球大戰,我們有一個知情權。“
Menwith Hill houses a major US military site that is shrouded in secrecy and is already known to provide a home for Echelon, the US eavesdropping system that intercepts communications from around the world.
Menwith山設有一個主要的美國軍事地點,籠罩於秘密中和已知會提供一個家給Echelon,那美國的竊聽系統,可攔截來自世界各地的通訊。
The site houses 33 satellite dishes encased in giant "golf balls" called radomes that receive data from SBIRS's four satellites 24,000 miles above earth.
該地點裝置了33座碟形衛星信號接受器,被裝進巨大的“高爾夫球”中稱為天線罩,接收來自SBIRS的四顆衛星的數據,在地球上空24,000英里。
The UK site is linked to Buckley, the airforce base in Colorado, home to almost 100,000 military personnel and the 460th space wing of the US Air Force Space Command. The 460th provides "missile warning, missile defence, technical intelligence, satellite command and control, and robust aerospace communications" according to its website.

But its work is top secret and critics say even the UK government has little idea what happens at Menwith Hill, which has been run by the US National Security Agency since 1966.

When asked about the site, former defence secretary Bob Ainsworth insisted its use was "governed by the terms of the Nato status of forces agreement of 1951 and other confidential arrangements between the UK and US".

Questions remain as to whether the US has sought permission from the UK to relay data from Menwith Hill to Buckley. Hamilton asked: "If the position were reversed and there was an RAF airbase in Massachusetts can you imagine the American military saying 'You do what you like'?"

Confirmation that the SBIRS was now ready to go live at Menwith Hill was revealed only in a terse parliamentary answer from defence minister Nick Harvey, who confirmed: "SBIRS facilities at RAF Menwith Hill are ready for operation." Harvey added: "The specific operational dates are a matter for the United States, although it is likely all SBIRS facilities at the base will be operational by the end of 2011."

A second, yet-to-be-completed project, the Space Tracking and Surveillance System, using satellites, will track missiles after SBIRS has detected them.

According to peace campaigners, the systems are a key component in what the US military calls "full spectrum dominance" – of land, sea, air, space and information.

Campaigners claim the presence of the US technology at Menwith Hill heightens the risk of a pre-emptive attack on the UK as a means of disabling America's missile-detection system.

They complain that planning approval for major projects at the site, whose main contractors are the US arms manufacturers Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin, was granted without consultation, and questioned whether it breaches the Outer Space Treaty which prohibits space becoming a new platform for the arms race.

Brigadier General Roger W Teague, the air force's infrared space systems director, has hinted that the SBIRS has more uses than missile detection.

"It is far more than just missile warning," Teague acknowledged this month, sparking speculation it could be used to gather "technical intelligence" for use by spy agencies.

But, according to its critics, many of the claims for the system are over-blown. "SBIRS is just one part of the highly complex US missile defence system and is a long way off from being operational," said Lindis Percy, joint co-ordinator of the Campaign for the Accountability of American Bases. "The US has spent billions and billions of dollars trying to develop this system ever since Ronald Reagan's fantasy of 'Star Wars' in the 1980s. It is still a fantasy, unlikely ever to work and should be scrapped."

According to the CAAB, the US has around 6,000 military bases on its own soil and more than 1,000 worldwide.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2011/jun/18/son-star-wars-base-yorkshire

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