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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Apr 28, 2016.
Missile Defense Defend and Deter Act of 2016
This bill requires the Department of Defense (DOD) Missile Defense Agency to administer an intercept flight test of the ground-based midcourse defense element of the ballistic missile defense system at least once each fiscal year.
Each test shall provide for:
validation of the defense element's operational effectiveness; use of assets in their operational configuration against an inventory of targets to assess performance in a variety of flight test regimes; use of operational doctrine and real-world constraints; evaluation of new concepts of operations, tactics, and techniques; and mechanisms to assure the confidence of members of the Armed Forces in the basic design of the ground-based midcourse defense element, its hit-to-kill effectiveness, and its operational capability. The Agency may forgo a test if:
it would jeopardize national security, not be successful due to specific ground-based midcourse defense components needing a non-intercept test, and likely fail due to impractical time considerations; or funding is insufficient. The Agency also may forgo a test if DOD determines that the testing is detrimental to U.S. national security interests and provides notice to Congress.