Monday, October 20, 2008

Outer space-y missile defense

Earlier this month the U.S. Sate Department’s International Security Advisory Board issued a report titled “China’s Strategic Modernization”. The report finds that "the United States will need to pursue new missile defense capabilities, including taking full advantage of space," to avoid an "emerging creep" by China toward strategic nuclear coercion, the report said. Read this Washington Post article for further information.

The report's phrase “full advantage of space” is opaque enough to be interpreted in both ways, either to cover only a militarization of space or also a weaponization. The Congress already gave an indication of its interpretation of the report’s finding: it voted recently to approve $5 million for a study of space-based missile defenses, the first time the development of space weapons will be considered since similar work was canceled in the 1990s.

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