The Pentagon: Should There Be Static On a $17 Billion Hot Line?

Should There Be Static On a $17 Billion Hot Line?

Government auditors have recently finished a review of the Pentagon's nuclear-war-fighting communications satellites and--whoops!--it seems that they underperform. A primary component of the costly, top-secret Milstar satellites is the Military Commanders' Voice Conference Network. That's mil-speak for telephone links between the President and his senior military commanders.

The voice network has an important job, the General Accounting Office pointed out in a report released last week. It's designed "to enable commanders to discuss whether a ballistic-missile launch threatens North America and, if so, to determine the appropriate retaliatory response." But, like your first cell phone, the system is a bit clunky....

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