Thursday, July 27, 2017

The United States Space Corps - Part VI

Rep. Mike Rogers' counterpart in the Senate Sen. Deb Fischer, said she was “not sold on the idea,” of the Space Corps even after a visit with Rogers. Sen. Bill Nelson a former astronaut, was more dismissive: “It’s not going anywhere,” he said in relation to he proposal.

Mike Turner chairman of the Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee and leader of the congressional opposition, has acknowledged the military has had difficulty in executing space programs arguing that the House has not adequately laid out the organization and functions of the Space Corps, or even how much forming it would cost.

Brian Weeden, director of program planning for Secure World Foundation, which studies the international use of space, said “There are elements of global space war already happening,” citing a Russian and Chinese presence in space and even signal jammers from North Korea. “What hasn’t happened is the kinetic part: blowing up satellites.”

“Space is no longer a peaceful domain,” says former Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James "There is a real possibility that a conflict on Earth could bleed into space.” And the reasons for that according to the Defense Intelligence Agency are Russia and China. Russia wants to gain more power in space because it believes gaining supremacy there will allow it to win future fights on this planet and China created the Strategic Support Force, which is meant to streamline and improve its space, cyber, and electronic warfare missions. "They are both causing problems with anti-satellite technology" noted Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats in a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in May, and  therefore could mess with the satellites that help the US military do its job. 

Peter Singer, a senior fellow at the think tank New America said space is a very important domain, adding, “The opening battles of a World War III would arguably be silent, focusing on cyber and space.” Yet he believes the solution is less organizational but in the acquisition of microsatellites “What makes us vulnerable is expensive launch platforms and expensive satellites so that we cannot have enough of them.”

The Senate Armed Services Committees own NDAA addresses space by establishing the position of chief information warfare officer who oversees military cyber and space policies rather than a Space Corps.

Source: DefenceNews / NYTimes / Vox

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