SPACE and the Theater Commander's War
NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIV WASHINGTON DC INST FOR NATIONAL STRATEGIC STUDIES
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From Desert Storm to Allied Force, the role of spacepower in the American way of war has expanded. Other nations also acknowledge the merits of spacepower. According to recent figures, 32 nations as well as many commercial firms and private consortia have objects in orbit. India is reportedly developing improved imagery satellites-from 5m to 1m resolution-based on a lesson learned from skirmishes with Pakistan over Kashmir. Recently one company launched Ikonos, a commercial satellite with 1m resolution, whose images are available on the Internet. Spacepower is no longer a preserve of superpowers. Victory will belong to those who best integrate and employ its capabilities on the operational level. But a review of current doctrine and organization reveals areas in need of improvement. Specifically, spacepower should be included in the basic plan portion of the operation plans and execution paragraph of orders used in crisis action planning. Organizationally, JFCs must have a director of space and information operation forces, similar to a director of mobility forces under the joint force air component commander JFACC to integrate strategic and intertheater airlift, in order to provide unity of effort for spacepower. Such recommendations will enable JFCs to fully exploit spacepower in combined arms teams.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
- Unmanned Spacecraft