Department of Defense
January 4, 2002
Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld announced this
week the redesignation of the Ballistic Missile Defense
Organization (BMDO) as the Missile Defense Agency (MDA).
Consistent with the president's emphasis on missile defense, the
secretary also provided direction necessary to meet the top four
priorities for the United States in this important mission area.
 These are:

To defend the United States, deployed forces, allies and friends
from ballistic missile attack.
To employ a Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) that layers
defenses to intercept missiles in all phases of their flight
(i.e. boost, midcourse, and terminal) against all ranges of
To enable the Services to field elements of the overall BMDS as soon as practicable.
To develop and test technologies, use prototype and test assets
to provide early capability, if necessary, and improve the
effectiveness of deployed capability by inserting new
technologies as they become available or when the threat
warrants an accelerated capability.

        Elevating BMDO to agency status recognizes the national
priority and mission emphasis on missile defense.  The current
director of BMDO, Air Force Lt. Gen. Ronald T. Kadish, will
assume the title of director, Missile Defense Agency.  He will
continue to report directly to Edward C. "Pete" Aldridge Jr.,
undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and
Logistics.   The secretary has tasked Aldridge with the
responsibility of implementing his direction and will look to
the Senior Executive Council for oversight of missile defense
activities.  Also, the full and cooperative efforts of the
military Services, Joint Staff and defense agencies are

        The overall objectives for missile defense include:
establishing a single program to develop an integrated missile
defense system; assigning the best and brightest people to this
work and applying a capability-based requirements process for
missile defense

The MDA is charged with developing the missile defense system
and baselining the capability and configuration of its elements.
 The military departments will procure and provide for missile
defense operations and support.