A Global Space Control Strategy
AIR UNIV MAXWELL AFB AL AIR FORCE RESEARCH INST
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The 2011 National Security Space Strategy notes that space is becoming an operating medium in which the continued dominance of the United States is not assured. Already, potential adversaries have overtly demonstrated advancement in the development of space control systems that directly threaten the US use of space today China s 2007 destruction of a domestic satellite with a direct-ascent antisatellite ASAT system is the highest exemplar. Additionally, other nations such as Russia have surpassed the post Cold War taboos of talking about the development of space control activity with the announcement of the fielding of the Sokol-Eshelon airborne laser ASAT system and continued references to new space control weapons under development to challenge the United States. Consider also the lowered barrier of entry for space systems development because of small satellite and microelectronic technology advances and the perceived lack of tangible, international sanctions and punishment as a result of acknowledged ASAT testing. These factors have muddied the international-policy picture. Emboldened actors appear ready to push the envelope as to what the United States and international community will accept in ASAT testing and development before significant pushback is enacted. Further, a growing body of literature suggests that space-based intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance ISR communication and precision navigation and timing assets are in various stages of development in potential adversary nations to support the employment and improvement of terrestrial weapons. Furthermore, a space war has been predicted in blue ribbon commission reports and congressional testimony, and the chances of conflict with an adversary possessing space control capabilities are high in the next 10 years.
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