A missile-defense system is a system that can stop incoming missiles by firing another projectile, such as an anti-ballistic missile, at it. The first anti-ballistic missile was tested by the Soviet Union in 1961, and the United States soon developed one also. The two countries signed the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (AMB Treaty) in 1972, which conservatives like Phyllis Schlafly opposed.
In order to eliminate the threat of a large-scale nuclear attack on the United States, U.S. President Ronald Reagan developed the Strategic Defense Initiative, and missile-defense systems continued to develop afterward. The U.S. successfully tested its missile-defense system in 2017.
A missile defense system – the ability to shoot down an incoming missile with a missile – ended the doctrine of mutually assured destruction (MAD) in favor of what Reagan termed Assured Survival. Democrats and liberals vehemently opposed Reagan and clung to the anti-technology growth Doctrine of MAD, mockingly calling missile defense "Star Wars – a futuristic fantasy."
- Stracqualursi, Veronica (May 31, 2017). A brief history of US missile defense systems. ABC News. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
- US conducts successful missile intercept test, Pentagon says. Fox News. May 30, 2017. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
- Parry, Hannah (May 30, 2017). America's missile defense system WORKS: The Pentagon successfully shoots down a mock nuclear warhead over California in test of missile that will stop ICBMs reaching the US. The Daily Mail. Retrieved May 31, 2017.