U.S. activates Romanian missile defense site, angering Russia

Daily News Article - May 13, 2016


NOTE TO STUDENTS: This is a complicated story. As you read, circle the names of people (officials, leaders, experts) and dates. Underline or highlight key words and phrases. When you read it a second time, you can easily see which points you identified as important. After reading this article, you will know more than many adults do about the U.S./NATO missile defense shield in Europe.

1. The first paragraph of a news article should answer the questions who, what, where and when. List the who, what, where and when of this news item. (NOTE: The remainder of a news article provides details on the why and/or how.)

2. What is the aim of the U.S. missile defense shield in Romania?

3. Why is Russia angry about this missile defense system? What have they said? Be specific.

4. How does the U.S. explain the purpose of the defense shield? (How did officials answer Russia’s allegations?)

5. a) What is included in the missile defense system? (see para. 6-7)
b) How does the missile defense system work? (see para. 18)

6. What action has Russia taken recently in Kaliningrad?

7. a) What is the purpose of NATO?
b) How does Doug Lute, the U.S. envoy to NATO, explain the establishment of the missile defense system in Europe?

8. U.S. officials say the missile defense shield will be used to thwart Iran. In May 2015, President Obama and other world leaders signed an agreement with Iran ending sanctions imposed over the Iranian government’s nuclear program.
Ben Rhodes is Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications for President Obama and an Advisor on the 2015 Iran Nuclear Deal. In an interview with the New York Times last week, Rhodes bragged about how he helped create the false narrative that President Obama started negotiations with Iran only after the supposedly moderate Hassan Rouhani was elected president in 2013. But negotiations had actually began when strongman Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was still president. Rhodes said they created that false story because the American public would not have accepted the deal had it known that Iranian hard-liners were still calling the shots. Rhodes concedes in the article that the so-called moderate regime is not moderate at all. “We’re not betting on it,” he said.
What do you think then is actually true about the purpose of the U.S. missile defense shield: it is to protect against the Iranian regime or against Russian aggression? Ask a parent if you’re not sure. (Also ask a parent, which presidential candidate would you trust in foreign policy matters such as these? Please explain your answer.

PLEASE NOTE: Daily posting and “Answers” emails will end for the school year on Friday, May 27th.