It has been made clear from previous military and defense analysts' reports that Guam could be the target of a missile attack.
We all hope this won't happen but at the same time, we Guamanians need to know that we are adequately protected by a comprehensive missile defense system.
The risk of a potential missile strike toward Guam became international news when North Korea specifically mentioned Guam. This led to the rotational deployment to Guam of the truck-mounted Terminal High Altitude Area Defense missile system to the island in April 2013.
But North Korea was last decade's threat.
China's advances in the development of missiles have become more of an issue.
Military officials have, in the last few years, indicated that Guam faces the risk of being in the crosshairs in the event of missiles being launched from China at U.S. military bases.
"The defense of Guam" is one of the priorities this year for the U.S. military's Indo-Pacific Command, said Adm. Phil Davidson in March, when he was head of the command, in testimony to the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee.
Davidson said China is a threat to Guam now – as shown by Chinese submarines "circumnavigating" Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands in recent years.
He also pointed out Chinese military propaganda released about a year ago that showed Andersen Air Force Base as a potential target.
"Guam is a target today. It needs to be defended and it needs to be prepared for the threats that will come in the future because it is clear to me that Guam is not just a place that we believe that we could fight from – as we have for many decades. We're going to have to fight for it."
In the Senate committee hearing, Davidson was trying to make the case for a comprehensive missile defense system that protects Guam more effectively from the air, land and sea. He's advocating for the Aegis Ashore system which has a price tag of $1.6 billion.