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The World

March 10, 1987

A Soviet general, in a detailed account of possible countermeasures to the U.S. Strategic Defense Initiative, called orbiting space stations the proposed anti-missile system's most vulnerable link. Maj. Gen. Ivan Anureyev, in the journal Energy, said "Star Wars" space platforms are vulnerable to attack from a variety of weapons, including "space mines"--explosive satellites that the United States says the Kremlin has had for years. Said Anureyev: "One can produce clouds of metal balls to travel on collision courses with SDI components. Coasting at a speed of 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) per second, one such 30-gram (1-ounce) ball can pierce a steel casing--or a space station's wall--which is 15 centimeters (6 inches) thick."

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