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    Daniel Gouré claimed that another response might be deployment of aerial detection systems in Europe capable to detect and track missiles, manned and unmanned aircraft up to 340 miles away. Washington accuses Moscow of alleged breaches of the INF Treaty.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United States is capable to respond to alleged Russia’s Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty violations by deploying new sea-based ballistic missiles, placing aerial detection systems in Europe, or selling advanced drones to allies, former Pentagon official told Sputnik.

    “First thing I would do on the offensive side, it’s just going to be a 500 km [range], may be even sea-based missile,” former director of the Pentagon’s Office of Strategic Competitiveness Daniel Gouré told Sputnik. “If you really want to get ugly about it, it would be a missile capable of being deployed… on the next batch of Virginia class attack submarines.”

    The United States could build an “INF compliant” missile, "bigger than torpedo tube, bigger than Tomahawks," Gouré added.

    “And now I can put it in the North Sea, I can put it in the Arctic, if I was dealing with the Russians, I can even put it on a modified surface ship in the Black Sea,” he said.

    Beginning in July 2014, Washington accused Moscow of violating the INF treaty by testing a prohibited cruise missile. Russia has denied the allegation pointing, in turn, to US violations of the agreement that bans nuclear and conventional ground-based cruise and ballistic missiles with a range of 310-3417 miles (500-5500 kilometers).

    Gouré claimed that another response might be deployment of aerial detection systems in Europe capable to detect and track missiles, manned and unmanned aircraft up to 340 miles away.

    “In fact, you can start with sensors, you don’t even have to start with weapons,” he said. “Take the JLENS [Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System], send it to Europe, just send it to Europe and deploy it.”

    JLENS, currently being tested at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds in northeast Maryland, is a system of two aerostats that float 10,000 feet in the air. The helium-filled aerostats, each nearly as long as a football field, carry powerful radars, according to the system developer Raytheon.

    Additionally, the United States could begin sales of drones to its NATO allies following the US government's ruling last week that allows the sale of armed drones to foreign governments, Gouré asserted.

    “With the new ruling, how about selling advanced drones, big ones, and the sensor packages to allies,” he said.

    The United States military and defense industry have on the shelf technology “to do all kinds of nasty things that would unnerve them [the Russians] without ever having to violate the [INF] Treaty,” the former official concluded.

    During testimony to the US Senate in early February, newly appointed Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter raised the possibility of pursuing military measures to respond to Russia’s alleged development of a ground-launched cruise missile that is not compliant with the arms control treaty.

    On Friday, a US House Armed Services committee staffer told Sputnik that Congress would actively consider Pentagon recommendations for a possible military response to Russia’s alleged violations of the INF.

    The United States and the Soviet Union signed the INF Treaty in 1987.



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    ballistic missile, Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS), INF treaty, Pentagon, Daniel Gouré, United States, Russia
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