Peacekeeper in silo
The business end of an LGM-118A Peacekeeper ICBM, nestled in its silo, points toward the clear blue sky over F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming, in June 1987. Originally known as the MX, it was in service from 1986 to 2005, when the last of the 50 Peacekeepers was deactivated in accordance with the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) II, which did away with all multiwarhead ICBMs.
Even today, though, the world has much to worry about from ballistic missiles, whether the range is intercontinental or something shorter. The recent U.S. decision to scrap an antiballistic missile plan for Eastern Europe has eased recent tensions with Russia, but serious worries remain about nuclear weaponry efforts in countries such as Iran and North Korea.
The Peacekeeper, which stood 71 feet tall and weighed more than 95 tons, had a range greater than 6,000 miles and had a maximum speed of approximately 15,000 miles per hour. (In LGM-118A, the L stands for silo-launched, the G for surface attack, and the M for missile.)
October 19, 2009 11:00 AM PDT
Photo by: SSGT Ronald Rush/U.S. Air Force
| Caption by: Jonathan Skillings
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