The article aims at elucidating the problem of the so called anti-missile shield, which can be interpreted as an element of American supremacy in the international system. The study is divided into four parts that correspond to specific contexts of the analysis. The first part deals with the origin of the program of the anti-missile shield which goes back to the 1950s. Emphasis is placed on the long range of the undertaking and the favorable attitude of the American administration towards it irrespectively of the party represented in power. The second part looks at technological issues and the global character of the venture as well as its military-technological and propaganda dimensions. Part three discusses the negative attitude towards the program on the part of two countries aspiring to the status of superpowers: the Russian Federation and the People's Republic of China. Attention is drawn to the efforts made by these countries to neutralize the American endeavors to maintain military supremacy. This is a topic relatively little known to the general public as it attracts marginal interest of the mass media. The last part concerns the attitude of the European countries to the American project and focuses on the polarization of standpoints of the member states of NATO and the EU.
Witold Ostant, Instytut Zachodni, Instytut Naukowo-Badawczy, ul. Mostowa 27, 61-854 Poznan, Poland
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