BY INGE SELLEVAG
- I can confirm that there is a radar in the United States which has been tested for some years and is going to Norway. But I don't know the American name and address of the radar. said Norwegian secretary of defense Dag Jostein Fjarvoll to the newspaper Bergens Tidende after he May 6 answered a question in the Parliament about the new radar Globus II (Have Stare) to be established in Vardo, Norway by year 2000.
- It is not difficult for me to assure the Parliament that Globus II is under full Norwegian control, the secretary of defense said in his answer to the parliamentary question. Hallgeir Langeland, a representative of the Norwegian socialist party, referred to an article in Bergens Tidende April 4 stating that the radar has been used in missile defense tests and asked if the secretary of defense could assure that the radar is under full Norwegian control and will not be part of the US national missile defense (NMD) when deployed to Norway.
The secretary of defense claimed that the radar will be manned exclusively by Norwegian personnel and that only Norwegian personnel will have access to data in real time, that is direct data transfer «on-line». - There is in other words no coupling between Globus II and the American air force in «real time». The radar can therefore not contribute to the US missile defense. This has neither been a Norwegian nor an American precondition for establishing the radar system in Norway, Fjarvoll said.
The Norwegian defense earlier told in an official article that the new Vardo radar currently is located at Vandenberg. American experts since has identified the radar at Vandenberg as Have Stare. The radar has not only participated in missile defense tests, but is also mentioned as a possible support radar in NMD documents and statements.
Rick Lenner, a spokesman for the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization, said to Bergens Tidende on May 3 that the radar going to Norway is a different radar than the one located at Vandenberg. The two radars only have the same name (Have Stare) and is the same type of radar.
In Parliament the Norwegian secretary of defense confirmed that Globus II today is standing at an American air force base and that the radar will be taken apart and sent to Norway. Confronted afterwards with the American statement about two different radars he said to Bergens Tidende that he does not know the name and address of the American radar going to Norway.
Asked whether there is a connection between Globus II and the existing radar in Vardo, called Globus I, the secretary of defense that Globus II is both an update of Globus I and new technology.The newspaper raised these further questions :
BT : Is the purpose of the new radar to track Russian intercontinental missiles launched from submarines in the Barents Sea or from Plesetsk ?
DJF : I can neither confirm or deny this. It is part of intelligence missions which Norway need and which I cannot comment on specifically.
The secretary of defense dismissed claims that it is technically an easy matter to give the radar the capacity to transfer data in «real time» : - The radar must be equipped and dimensioned for this and have a certain program software. This is not the case. It will not be prepared for direct transfer of data.
BT : Can data be transferred in a near real-time mood ?
DJF : What do you mean by that, that we send the data by mail
BT : - We mean communication links that transfer data for later analysis.
DJF : - If we talk about data transfer in general, there are many forms, for example fax transmissions, said the defense minister jokingly and added : - The important question is of this project is under Norwegian control. The answer is «yes». If you ask if the radar is linked on-line, the answer is «no».
BT : - Will data be sent out of Norway for analysis ?
DJF : - No.
BT : - How old is the new radar project ?
DJF : - I cannot answer that. I only know that the radar has been tested for 2-3 years.
BT : - According to a high-ranking retired Norwegian intelligence officer the radar was ready for deployment in 1991 ?
DJF : - That is more than I know. The history is not the problem here. We are going to test a new project and to be sure that the radar is working properly it has to be tested in different ways and in different projects. Therefore I cannot guarantee which projects it has been tested in earlier.
BT : - The official purpose of the radar in Vardo will be to monitor space objects. Why is this important to Norway ?
DJF : - We are a top space nation. No one is better than Norway in space technology at the moment.
Hallgeir Langeland, the representative who raised the parliamentary question, is surprised that a secretary of defense who has been in office for only six months can answer so categorically about a project which has been running since the end of the cold war.
- He is choosing the high ground. It will not surprise me if this
case will snowball and turn into a problem for the secretary of
defense. He twisted the facts in a way that he did not say anything
wrong, but on the other hand he did not address the questions directly,
Langeland said. The socialist party will pursue the case further
and engage their own experts to find out what is true about the