For the past year or so, DoD and MDA officials have been saying that the deployment of the high-speed SM-3 Block IIB interceptor, the key element of the planned Phase IV of the European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA,) would be delayed from its originally planned date of 2020 to at least 2021.
For example, below are two excerpts from a February 22, 2013 presentation by MDA Director Vice Admiral James D. Syring, showing that while Phase IV is still in the “2020 timeframe” the Block IIB missile is now scheduled for 2021.
Figure is two excerpts from: VADM J. D. Syring (Director, Missile Defense Agency), “Ballistic Missile Defense Update,” Briefing Slides, American Society of Naval Architects, February 22, 2013.
However, it now appears that the Block II interceptor has slipped to at least 2022. On March 12, at a Conference at the Atlantic Council, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy James N. Miller, in response to a question from Tom Collina of the Arms Control Association, stated that:
“The reality is that with the underfunding of our request from Congress for FY 12 and with the continuing resolution this year, our ability to deploy an SM-3 IIB has slipped at least two years to the right relative to what we had previously planned”
A video of Mr. Miller’s presentation (and the Q and A) at the conference on “The United States and Global Missile Defense” is available .
At the end of last week, the MDA removed its “Program Overview Briefing” slides (which dated from August 2012) from its “Downloadable Resources” on its website, replacing them with “Briefing slides coming soon.” It will be interesting to see the year for Phase IV on these.