Missile Defense within the Context of Extended Deterrence: The Uncertain Security Commitments in the Korean Peninsula
Previous research examining the deterring effect of a missile defense has asserted that
such a missile defense|damage-limiting capability |decreases the vulnerability of
the United States(US) and enhances its security guarantee to allies. However, the
puzzle of how to convince the potential challenger of the credibility of the threat
inherent in an extended deterrence remains unsolved. In this paper, I present a game-
theoretic model of the deployment of a missile defense which I use to demonstrate
the gap between the resolve of the US as inferred from that deployment and the
actual security commitment of the US to the region in which the missile defense is
installed. Such a discrepancy weakens the credibility of the US security umbrella
and consequentially lowers the likelihood of success of a policy based thereon which
is intended to compel the behavior of an opponent. This finding suggests that a
damage-limiting force actually undermines the credibility of the deterrence threat in
an extended deterrence setting.
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