...of the Reagan kind, not the George Lucas kind.
The Council on Foreign Relations has a nice article about the evolution of Missile Defense from the 50s until the present. I've been an opponent of Missile Defense since I first heard about it when I was about 6 years old. During the Cold War, it had the potential to destabilize the Mutual Assured Destruction theory that kept the US and USSR from launching a few thousand nukes at each other. More importantly, outside Tom Clancy's The Cardinal in the Kremlin, there's never really been a Missile Defense system that has actually worked. Hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars have been--and are being--spent without significant progress.
Barney Frank is a bit pejorative when he refers to it as "protecting the Czech Republic from missiles from Iran", but he is right in pointing out that the money certainly could be better spent elsewhere. In these days of trillion dollar deficits, programs that don't work (and never have) should be cut. Thankfully, it seems that President Obama is not a huge fan of Missile Defense either. The persistent rumor is that he is using it as a bargaining chip to get Russia to step up sanctions on Iran. If he can pull that off, he'll be able to reduce the defense budget by a significant amount without affecting the troops in Iraq or Afghanistan while simultaneously waving a stick at Iran to go with his carrots.
Here's hoping that Missile Defense is on the way out.