Defense: The Flyswatters

In a Kremlin conference room, Nikita Khrushchev casually tossed off a comment that startled a delegation of 14 visiting U.S. editors. The Soviet Union, he said, had developed an anti-missile missile so unerringly accurate that it can "hit a fly in outer space." There were a few scare headlines in the U.S., but intelligence sources voiced strong doubt that Khrushchev's flyswatter really existed. Last week the U.S. answered his boast with a well-timed rejoinder. On Kwajalein atoll in the mid-Pacific, a winged Nike-Zeus missile lurched skyward atop a shaft of flame,...

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