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International Space Law and Space as a Warfighting Domain
In 1967, the Outer Space Treaty (OST) entered into effect, which today has 110 parties, including all the major space-faring nations. The most recognizable details of the treaty include the non-appropriation of space and the use of space for peaceful purposes. However, countries have found loopholes and have interpreted peaceful purposes to mean non-aggressive. These loopholes have led to a fear space would become weaponized. In 1981, Russia proposed a treaty to prevent an arms race in space. Since this proposal, space-faring nations such as China, the United Kingdom, and the European Union (EU) have proposed treaties and codes of conduct to govern behavior in space. In the last three years, the United States has established US Space Command as a combatant command and created an additional military branch, the US Space Force. Through space policy and Space Force doctrine, the US has declared space a warfighting domain. The purpose of this research is to determine if the treaty and code proposals are a valid solution to governing space as a warfighting domain.
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