Friday, January 19, 2007
Last week, according to US officials, China
managed to destroy one of its own ageing weather
satellites using a medium-range ballistic missile. This has caused
uproar amongst the neoconservative leadership in Washington, who
are hell bent on dominating space for their own means and have
previously stated that they fully intend to militarize and fight
from and into space.
Any notion that the war machine in Washington has not brought
this on themselves is laughable. The US has consistently carried
out research on lasers that could knock out enemy satellites and
the Bush administration has repeatedly ruled out the idea of a
global treaty banning putting weapons in space.
There is no agreed upon set of international rules to oversee
the development or ban the deployment of non-WMD space weapons,
only The Outer Space Treaty (1967) Bans nuclear weapon test explosions,
or any other nuclear explosion in the atmosphere or outer space,
along with The Partial Test Ban Treaty (1963) and a smattering
of UN resolutions over the past two decades that have called for
the use of space for peaceful purposes only. Consequently, only
weapons of mass destruction are banned from space, leaving the
possibility for deployment of anti-satellite weapons, space-based
lasers or any of the other space weapons being researched and
It is now commonly known that China is developing an advanced
laser weapons program, a capability that once mastered would allow
them to knock out communications satellites in orbit.
China's program, however, is a direct response to the continued
aggressive and isolationist US posture. The ongoing US missile
defense project is a front for a move towards what is referred
to as "full spectrum dominance" over the entirety of
the planet Earth.
Last year President Bush signed a new National
Space Policy that rejects future arms-control agreements
that might limit US flexibility in space and asserts a right
to deny access to space to anyone "hostile to US interests."
The document, the first full revision of overall space policy
in 10 years, asserts that the US government has the right to conduct
whatever research, development and "other activities"
in space that it deems necessary for its own national interests.
"Freedom of action in space is as important to the United
States as air power and sea power," the policy asserts in
Earlier last year it was revealed that the Pentagon
was seeking hundreds of millions of dollars from
Congress to test and develop new space weapons.
So why is it that they find it so surprising that China would
adopt the same policy in response?
The DOD has been developing
weapons for space for years, often under the guise
that the weapons systems are purely defensive. A little research
reveals that is 180 degrees from the truth. Ballistic missile
defense systems or components of the "missile defense shield"
are based on science fiction and have consistently failed, leading
many experts to seriously
question the credibility of the program (PDF link)
and ask whether it may simply be a fraudulent cover for an aggressive
offensive program to weaponize space.
The motive for militarizing space has been clearly advanced in
internal policy documents. Both the US SPACECOM documents Vision
for 2020 (1996) and the Long
Range Plan (1998) outlined a new military vision
to dominate the space dimension and integrate space forces.
The Mission Statement of the Vision document demonstrates:
"US Space Command—dominating the space dimension of
military operations to protect US interests and investment. Integrating
Space Forces into Warfighting capabilities across the full spectrum
There is no pretence of the spread of democracy or the betterment
of humanity, the sole purpose of space domination is to enable
continued military and economic superiority for the power elite
in the US. This is made clear in a telling comparison: “During
the rise of sea commerce, nations built navies to protect and
enhance their commercial interests.”
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Furthermore any progressive ideas of addressing poverty and economic
imbalance in the world are simply and swiftly dismissed:
"The globalisation of the world economy will also continue,
with a widening between ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots.’...space
superiority is emerging as an essential element of battlefield
success and future warfare."
So when the Bush administration talks about space policy as defensive,
this is just a miniscule part of the wider picture which will
incorporate world wide surveillance and the ability to strike
wherever and whenever instantaneously. Upon retiring in 1996,
General Joseph Ashy of Space Command had this to say:
“It's politically sensitive, but it's going to happen.
Some people don't want to hear this, and it sure isn't in vogue,
but -- absolutely -- we're going to fight in space. We're going
to fight from space and we're going to fight into space. That's
why the US has development programs in directed energy and hit-to-kill
(Gen. Joseph Ashy, Aviation Week & Space Technology, August
5 1996, p 51)
The facts make the rhetoric even more frightening. Most of the
systems currently being developed have the capability to be used
as Anti-Satellite (ASAT) weapons.
This week has also seen significant
steps forward for the air-borne laser system currently
in development. The military has commissioned Northrop Grumman
and Lockheed Martin to develop the system for a 747 jet under
the guise of protecting commercial airliners.
The air-borne laser has the capability to fire upwards at a
missile in it’s mid course phase or as it re-enters the
atmosphere. While the ability to successfully intercept a missile
is questionable, the system certainly has the capability to fire
at a satellite for longer as it moves slower.
Other space based weapons in development include satellite
kill vehicles, space
based lasers, and the firing of 100kg
tungsten bolts (PDF link) from space.
The fallout of the longstanding aggressive globalist space policy
will be an inevitable build up of arms as China and Russia race
to stay with the US. The effect of such arms build ups is a transformation
of nuclear weapons from more secure tactical deterrence weapons
into more aggressive, more diverse, more dangerous usable weapons.
Some may argue that nuclear weapons are dangerous anyway, yet
when you factor in the possibility of defenses against them the
nature of those weapons changes dramatically.
When the world's superpower is willing to spend trillions on
warfare, figures that could allow mankind to develop a real and
peaceful space exploration program, it is not surprising to see
other powerful nations adopting the same strategy. Make no mistake,
an arms race in space is most definitely on.