DATE=7/7/2000 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=ANTI-MISSILE PROTEST (L-ONLY) NUMBER=2-264170 BYLINE=JIM RANDLE DATELINE=PENTAGON CONTENT= VOICED AT: /// EDS: Missile test set for sometime between 10pm EDT Friday evening and 2am EDT Saturday morning /// INTRO: Pentagon plans to test the U-S National Missile Defense, or anti-ballistic missile system, Friday night are sparking protests from peace groups, Nobel prize winning scientists and Russia's government. V-O-A's Jim Randle reports. TEXT: A top Russian military commander says the U-S test may prompt nations to abandon existing nuclear arms treaties and is "a step toward global nuclear insecurity." The stern warning came from Vladimir Yakovlev, head of Russia's Strategic Rocket Force. (In a dispatch carried by the Interfax news agency,) General Yakovlev called the test "an outrageous" breach of the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, signed by Washington and Moscow. He said the such tests will lead to "nuclear anarchy," and prompt nuclear-armed states and those close to developing nuclear weapons to build more and better weapons, sparking an expensive and dangerous arms race. Meantime, at Vandenberg Air Force Base (in California) where the target missile is to be launched, a series of protests are keeping officials busy. They say "unknown infiltrators" sneaked into the base under cover of darkness Wednesday night, getting close the launch site, and leaving a trail of stickers and graffiti protesting the missile test. A peace group called the "Vandenberg Action Coalition" says it will keep sending people onto the base to stop the test and draw media attention to their point of view. The environmental group Greenpeace says its ship "Arctic Sunrise" has a similar mission as it heads for an area of ocean near the base that officials have closed for safety reasons. Other protestors are making their opposition to the test known by marching with anti-test signs at the front gate of the air base. The street protest follows a letter by 50 Nobel Prize winning scientists who urged President Clinton not to go forward with the missile defense. Critics say the system is unproven and unlikely to work, and will cost perhaps 60-billion dollars. Supporters, including a bipartisan majority in the U-S Congress, say North Korea or another so-called "state of concern" could develop a missile that could hit the United States by the year two-thousand-and-five. Engineers say in order to build a missile shield to meet that threat, the president will have to make a decision in a few months on whether to build the system. (Signed) NEB/JR/ENE/JP 07-Jul-2000 13:29 PM EDT (07-Jul-2000 1729 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .