And that figure is based on tests that are rigged to succeed, some critics claim. In Fort Greely, Alaska, only 8 of some 16 planned interceptor missiles are installed though the program has run since 1983. $7.8 Billion is earmarked for this year.
Two independent panels looked at the program after the 2004 and 2005 test failures when the interceptors failed to leave their silos. More testing was suggested. The US military responded by slowing the interceptor deployment.
A former chief of testing for the Pentagon and a critic said if highly scripted tests fail how could they succeed in a surprise attack. "Hitting an enemy missile out in space, at 15,000 mph, is like a hole-in-one with the hole moving at 15,000 mph."