Russian tyrant Vladimir Putin recently boasted about a couple of new nuclear weapons delivery systems he claims his country possesses. One is a hypersonic cruise missile that can evade any defense system and strike any target on Earth. The other is a long-range nuclear-tipped torpedo. The first weapon system, according to Western military analysts, is a work still in progress. The other is already operational and is a threat to the United States Navy.

Putin channels Glenn Close.

The last part of Putin’s speech, when he said, “No one has listened to us.

You listen to us now,” reminds one of nothing less than Glenn Close in the movie “Fatal Attraction” when she yelled at Michael Douglas, “I am not going to be ignored!” Putin, who had been a KGB agent during the cold war, has always been known as someone who has been irate at the fall of the old Soviet Union. The fact that he is rattling the nuclear saber as a cry for attention, similar to a crazy woman in a movie who once boiled a rabbit alive, should give us all cause for concern.

We've been down this road before

American leaders should comfort themselves with the knowledge that we have been down this road before. President Reagan proposed to end the Soviet nuclear threat with SDI, a program to develop space-based missile defense systems.

Even though little came of the Strategic Defense Initiative, the Soviets were so terrified of it, remembering how America beat them to the moon, that they spent far more than they could afford, to try to overcome it. Then the Soviet Union imploded, ending both the Cold War and the threat of nuclear annihilation.

Sen Ted Cruz, R-Texas has adroitly proposed that we do it again and this time deploy space-based battle stations for real.

The United States has a number of advantages that did not exist in the 1980s.

Military and space technology is far more advanced than was the case thirty-five years ago. Laser systems are already being prepared for deployment on land, sea, and air platforms. Putting them into space will be relatively easy.

The Russian economy is much weaker.

The Soviet system was in no great shape thirty or so years ago. Corruption, inefficiency, and cheap oil and gas have rendered modern Russia a basket case.

Finally, the Democrats do not dare oppose a missile defense system. They have already made hay over the idea that the Russians have tampered with the 2016 election and that anyone who says otherwise is a tool of Moscow. Imagine the fun Republicans like Cruz will have if their liberal counterparts start inveighing against “Star Wars” again?