Space Sustainment: A New Approach for America in Space
AIR AND SPACE POWER JOURNAL MAXWELL AFB AL
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Promoting commercial development and fostering free-market capitalism are cornerstones of American economic policy. Since its inception, the United States has favored decentralization and privatization as the primary means of generating wealth. These fiscal core values should permeate all aspects of US policy, yet the history of American activity in space seems to indicate otherwise. Accessing and exploiting space involves highly specialized technologies, astronomically high costs, and considerable risk of failure. In the formative years for space, these technological factors coincided with an existential threat to the United States and its allies, emerging from within the Soviet technocracy. The perceived successes of the Soviet Union s centralized approach to advanced research and development cast doubt on the ability of free markets to maintain a competitive edge.