Zapping Back

A panel shoots down Star Wars

A year after President Ronald Reagan unveiled his proposal for stationing a U.S. missile defense system in space, the basic feasibility of the idea continues to generate superheated controversy. It has been soundly endorsed by two Pentagon scientific commissions, which contend that advances in laser and other directed-energy technology make zapping enemy missiles from space a viable defense strategy. Last week the results of an inquiry into the notion were announced by a nine-man study group of the Union of Concerned Scientists, an organization based in Cambridge, Mass., that supports a nuclear freeze and has been...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!