OSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea (April 21, 2017) - - Martha Raddatz, the ABC News chief global affairs correspondent, toured 35th Air Defense Artillery Brigade's operation center and patriot site here April 15 at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea.
35th ADA BDE conducts joint and combined air and missile defense operations to protect assigned critical assets from surveillance, aerial attacks and missile attacks.
"This weapon system is capable of defeating a wide range of enemy capabilities from unmanned aerial systems to short-range and even long-range ballistic missiles," said Army Col. Mark A. Holler, the 35th ADA BDE commander. "This battery is designed to search for, detect and engage those inbound ballistic missiles."
35th ADA BDE's main objective is to deter and defend against North Korean aggression and enable United States Forces Korea combat power generation for Combined Forces Command decisive operations in the Korea Theater of Operations.
According to the Eighth Army website, Soldiers train to the highest levels in the most challenging conditions while maintaining equipment readiness above the Army standards.
"We keep our launchers loaded with live interceptors at all times so that we are ready to fight tonight," said Holler.
35th ADA BDE is confident in this system, said Raddatz. The success rate of the patriot is nearly 100 percent.
The system is similar to a bullet on bullet scenario, said Army Lt. Col. Mark Pelini, the 6-52nd ADA battalion commander. In the event of a threat missile launch, the patriot missile will target the threat missile and destroy it.
While the world worries that North Korea will get a missile that can reach the United States, there's no doubt the threat is up close, dangerous and continuous, said Raddatz. The slogan "fight tonight," is heard often and always with a sense of pride.
(Information from ABC news service was used in this story.)