Winning an Arms Race in Space Remains a Futile Fight

Donald Trump is not the first U.S. president to want to militarize life beyond Earth. But that is a bankrupt approach, believes Jonathan Marshall.

By Jonathan Marshall
Special to Consortium News

When Donald Trump declared it was time to Make America Great Again, he didn’t just mean here on Earth. As he directed the Pentagon in June to create a new branch of the armed services devoted just to space warfare, Trump declared, “It is not enough to have an American presence in space.We must have American dominance in space.”

Not waiting for an ambivalent Congress to act, the Defense Department reportedly plans in coming months to create a new U.S. Space Command, Space Operations Force, and Space Development Agency to manage everything from war-fighting in outer space to developing and launching military satellites.

A draft of a Pentagon planning document states that the capabilities unleashed by this new structure will help “deter, and if necessary degrade, deny, disrupt, destroy and manipulate adversary capabilities to protect U.S. interests, assets and way of life.”

Previous official critics of a new space service, including Trump’s own Air Force secretary, Heather Wilson, and Defense Secretary James Mattis, almost invariably raised only bureaucratic objections rather than deeper questions about the merits of turning space into a battlefield.

Trump: Ready for take off. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

The Pentagon is complicated enough,” Wilson complained in 2017. Creation of a new space service, she said, “will make it more complex, add more boxes to the organization chart, and cost more money.”

Even traditional Pentagon skeptics have adopted the same narrow focus, mainly questioning whether a new Space Force will best serve U.S. war-fighting needs or simply create more inter-service rivalries.

Supporters of a Space Force insist it will help attract resources to avitally important theater of operations. The United States military operates 159 satellites in orbit, and other government agencies maintain dozens more for communications, surveillance,and location services that have become essential to U.S. warfighting plans. These satellites help guide drone missiles, special operations units fighting in remote battlefields, and naval task forces operating across the globe.

If Russia and China succeed in developing more effective anti-satellite weapons, critics warn, they could threaten U.S. dominance in space. “We could be deaf, dumb and blind within seconds,” said Rep. Jim Cooper, a Tennessee Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee. “Seldom has a great nation been so vulnerable.”

Missed Arms Control Opportunities

But escalating the militarization of space is the wrong way to protect these important assets. The narrow debate in the United States over the proposed Space Force almost entirely ignores the long history of squandered opportunities to stop such threats through arms control rather than an ever-more-expensive and unwinnable arms race.

U.S. defense planners, civilian as well as military, have long argued for investing whatever it takes to maintain America’s technological lead in space, just as for many years they argued for maintaining America’s lead in nuclear weapons.

In the 1960s, when it became apparent that no one could win a nuclear arms race, the United States signed two important treaties—the Partial Test Ban Treaty and the Outer Space Treaty—banning the placement of nuclear weapons in space. But every administration since then has opposed or sidelined further arms control in space, despite overwhelming global support for such agreements.

The 1978 United Nations General Assembly’s Special Session on Disarmament called for international negotiations “in accordance with the spirit” of the Outer Space Treaty to “prevent an arms race in outer space,” or PAROS.

Momentum built in the mid-1980s for a PAROS treaty, but the Reagan, Bush and Clinton administrations rejected any such multilateral deal.

With its large missile defense program and technical advantages inpotential space weaponry, the United States has consistently refused to negotiate PAROS,” observes the Washington-based Nuclear Threat Initiative.

The George W. Bush administration militantly opposed such a treaty, and even canceled one of the landmarks of arms control, the Anti-Ballistic Missile Ttreaty.

The U.S. Air Force issued a strategic master plan in 2006 stating that “the ability to gain space superiority (the ability to exploit space while selectively disallowing it to adversaries) is critically important … an essential prerequisite in modern warfare.”

Meanwhile, China and Russia continued pressing for a weapons-free environment in space. In 2005, when Russia introduced a resolution calling for confidence-building measures in space, with overwhelming support in the U.N. General Assembly (see here and here), only the United States objected.

In February 2008, against U.S. objections, China and Russia introduced a Draft Treaty on the Prevention of the Placement of Weapons in Outer Space, the Threat or Use of Force against Outer Space Objects.

Shooting Down a Satellite

U.S. missile launching in 2008 from the USS Lake Erie to destroy a satellite in space. (U.S. Navy photo)

A week later, the United States demonstrated its anti-satellite weapons capability by shooting down a failed spy satellite using a Navy missile, fired from the USS Lake Erie in the Pacific Ocean near HawaiiThe stated goal of Operation Burnt Frost, the code name of the mission, was to prevent the satellite from crashing and releasing toxic gas“This is all about trying to reduce the danger to human beings,” James Jeffrey, then-deputy national security adviser, said at the time. But China, which had conducted a similar demonstration in 2007 by destroying an old weather satellite, thought the U.S. action might have been done to show military might.

Although the Obama administration was far less hostile to arms control, it joined only Israel in abstaining from a U.N. General Assembly resolution in 2011 calling for the prevention of an arms race in space. In 2014, only Georgia and Ukraine joined the United States and Israel in opposing a Russian-drafted U.N. resolution on banning an arms race in space. The same dismal record has continued since then, year after year.

In the meantime, of course, both China and Russia have made technological strides in their ability to hit and destroy targets in space. Their continued support for arms control, however, suggests that they recognize the ultimate futility of fighting in that frontier.

As a recent article in Wired points out:

“A Russo-Sino-American space war could very well end with a crippled global economy, inoperable infrastructure, and a planet shrouded by the orbiting fragments of pulverized satellites—which, by the way, could hinder us all on Earth until we figured out a way of cleaning them up. In the aftermath of such a conflict, it might be years before we could restore new constellations of satellites to orbit. Preparing for orbital war has fast become a priority of the US military, but the more urgent priority is figuring out how to prevent it.”

Given these stakes, the ability of a future U.S. Space Force to pulverize more satellites than China or Russia could be considered a bug, not a feature. More to the point, the entire U.S. approach to space warfare is now suspect, if not bankrupt.

As retired Gen. James Cartwright, former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, wisely observed in 2016, “The days of ‘space dominance’are over, and we need to move from thinking of space as a military domain of offense and defense to a more complex environment that needs to be managed by a wide range of international players.”

He added, “This is the right time to reconsider our actions in space, as a new presidential administration takes over in January 2017.”

Who says irony is dead?

Jonathan Marshall is author or co-author of five books on international relations, national security and history. He currently is completing a new book on U.S. organized crime, big business and national politics in the early Cold War era.

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43 comments for “Winning an Arms Race in Space Remains a Futile Fight

  1. STAN MRAK
    August 8, 2018 at 12:26 am

    In all seriousness, I think the extraterrestrial races that are monitoring our planet may have something to say about this.

  2. KiwiAntz
    August 7, 2018 at 2:54 pm

    Does anyone remember Ronald Reagan’s attempt to militarise Space during the 1980’s with the so called “Star Wars” missile defence system? It proved to be a unworkable, foolish & horrendously expensive exercise in stupidity & human folly by an old, b-grade Hollywood dotard! The aim was to enforce a new Space race to highlight American superiority in Space, however 2 x Space Shuttles explosions & millions of wasted tax dollars on the failed, Stars Wars missile system laid that myth to sleep! America’s been down this tiresome route before & failed! Trump needs to shut up & concentrate his efforts on fixing things, on Earth, particularly in his own Country rather than this ridiculous notion of a US SPACCEFORCE!! Leave the science fiction fantasy of American “Starship Troopers” to Hollywood!

    • STAN
      August 11, 2018 at 10:22 pm

      Star Wars didn’t fail — it went underground. You’re supposed to believe it was dismantled and you believed what they told you.

  3. CitizenOne
    August 6, 2018 at 11:26 pm

    There is no other frontier left which promises the discovery a new world than space exploration and human endeavors in Space. We have used up all of the Space on Earth and are enthralled with the visions of the colonization of Mars and other inhospitable places like Titan where life has a lower chance of survival than the chance for survival on our Moon which is only 250,000 miles away.

    I would think that the “experts” on strategies for the colonization of other planets might be obsessed with the colonization of the Moon rather than Mars or some farther off objective like exoplanets.

    But sadly the strategy of the US is to militarize space and to invest all of its resources in a plan to load up our local gravity well with weapons to prevent the”invaders” from Earth from inhabiting space will doom this foolhardy exploratory fools folly to death at the hands of those which seek the domestic Earthly superiority of space.

    More money for defense contractors defending an entirely implausible outcome of the colonization of space by humans and the waste of a Trillion Dollars to militarize space in a space race to place as many bombs in orbit as possible to end all humanity.

    There was a reason for the anti nuclear proliferation treaty because it was an end game for the human colonization of space and it was the end of human colonization of even the satellites orbiting the Earth.

    Just like the anti ballistic defensive missile treaty or ABM treaty the US blew up in an unfettered ambitious unilateral way to be able to be the first country to militarize space and win space superiority.

    Space Superiority back in the day was hailed as the freedom from attack of US assets in space and the freedom to conduct attacks from US based space platforms anywhere in the World.

    The US Air force originally came up with Space Command as a way to gain Space Superiority and although to this day it has not come up with a coherent plan to accomplish their stated goals it pretty much does not matter. It does not matter to the Pentagon very much if Space Superiority is even achievable which it isn’t.

    US defense experts considered considered the possibility of the domination of space via nuclear weapons and concluded that it was impossible.

    This assessment was based on the problem of defending the high (very high) ground of outer space. The conclusion was that there were unlimited effective countermeasures which an enemy could employ at a far lower cost to defeat any space based military platform than to deploy and support and defend any space based defensive system let alone a much more desirable target which would be to knock out any offensive platform such as Star Wars under Reagan.

    The military conclusion regarding the possibility of a secure space based weapons platform fell flat on its face with the conclusion that any expensive military strategy or technology will fail if there are cheaper ways to defeat it.

    This basic economic equation is ignored by the military defense contractors and our current administration since the “expensive” nature of any space based military platform promises funding by the government to the tune of trillions of dollars no matter what the feasibility of it working has to do with it.

    As long as we have an administration which panders to corporations and in turn is supported by corporations we are living a nightmare. There is no filter on any crazy unworkable scheme doomed to fail which is not floated to gain the support of the government and its Trillion dollar defense budget.

    The government is working for the defense companies and promises to deliver the bacon (tax dollars) to the MIC no matter how impractical the proposed security solution is.

    What are the risks?

    The risks are that any space based weapons platform which is perceived by other nations as having a credible threat implies a number game as to the possible success or failure of any form of strike or counter strike aimed at defeating the space based military weapons capability.

    Possible defeating measures include:

    Parking nuclear capable weapons in close proximity to space based weapons platforms.

    Packing orbiting bombs with sand that will penetrate and destroy other orbiting weapons platforms in a cluster bombing strategy relying on a few sand blasting bombs to riddle the defense platform with mini meteors and render it nonoperational.

    Building a super saturation number of ICBMs which will ensure that enough missile warheads get through despite the defense capabilities.

    Developing non Earth orbit methods of attack such as nuclear tipped torpedoes, cruise missiles and submarine capability to be invulnerable from space based weapons platforms.

    EMP devices designed to fry the electronic circuits of space and ground based military platforms.

    All of these counter measures are easy compared with the Reagan era Star Wars scheme to launch nuclear missiles rained down from outer space.

    In short, the MIC has a lot of money to be made by making America Weak Again by launching the USA into a headlong arms race in outer space. Weak because there is no scenario in which such expensive weapons platforms could not be easily defeated by our foes.

  4. Tim
    August 6, 2018 at 8:33 pm

    I don’t know if this species is ever going to get its sh*t together. I see very little hope.

  5. Dunderhead
    August 6, 2018 at 7:49 pm

    Great article, very valid points and I do agree completely, I would merely like to make the point that these people are junkies and they need another boondoggle fix and as long as the Fed is going to keep playing along if they can get it approved they will run with it, on the other hand offering some sort of alternative boondoggle that may have an actual long-term civic common value like alternative energy in any of its muriate forms is a great boondoggle so why we are burning down the currency, let it ride, and then will become libertarians.

  6. bill
    August 6, 2018 at 6:49 pm

    space has long already been weaponised following Reagans star wars initiative….as for bankrupting the USA,complete nonsense-just how trillions did the Crash cost..???

    • Tom F
      August 7, 2018 at 3:42 pm

      Far too many trillions. There will be no race to weaponise space. Russia doesn’t need space weapons to lay the US to waste but it will develop effective countermeasures to any space weapons, if it hasn’t already got them, you can bet your house on that.

  7. Piotr Berman
    August 6, 2018 at 6:01 pm

    …attract resources to avitally important theater of operations… …technical advantages inpotential space weaponry…

    God puns! Theater of operation that is avitally important — opposite to vitally important. Nobody cares what happens up there, at least the chance of bombing weddings, funerals, hospitals, bakeries and allied troops are smaller than in other theaters. And building a Death Star that can be disabled by puny Ewoks targeting its ground interface is a classic case of making a weapon that has hardly any potential to be useful.

  8. William H Warrick III MD
    August 6, 2018 at 5:15 pm

    The main problem is that we have to buy the rockets from Russia.

    • August 7, 2018 at 3:43 pm

      You forgot the sanctions?

  9. August 6, 2018 at 4:03 pm

    Another sink hole for money.

    I saw estimates this morning that the cheapest this could be done and a minimal force would cost in the neighbourhood of 300 billion dollars. Pretty rich for a country that can`t afford to fix it`s bridges, roadways , and provide a decent education system.

  10. Wee Dapeople
    August 6, 2018 at 3:56 pm

    To win bigly at Intergalactic Dominance, the United States Space Force will require every sperm declared scared, and DRAFTED into the Space Force.

  11. Hide Behind
    August 6, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    The US using DskyARPA black funds is years ahead in the militarization of space and in space weaponry and abilities to move or reposition its satelites.
    Boeing’s ” Deep Space project”, 12 billion a year budget for at least last 12-15 years, has the only permanent orbit eye in sky satellites that are for military use only.
    Drapes aerospace plane projects can enter near earth orbit, fully armed, and remain airborne for over 30 days.
    Whenever US political a-holes start talking publicly of new weapon systems, they are already beyond early phases of deployability or partially operational.
    There is no nation , or combination of, that can defend itself from what US can rend upon them from space and the leaders of world’s nations know it.
    One Such. weapon system uses directed energy and blazer targets earth bound objects.
    US has long had capability to target and destroy, both from earthbound and space with missles and thousands of mini suicide satelites.
    Latest is Satelite destruct is for public consumption and just one more bully-boy reminder, warning, to rest of world.
    Propaganda is reality of so called Media outlets, they print what they are given by Government sources.
    Play American, North, Central, and South as no more than dumb as rocks serfs.
    Why not face truth, most are.

    • mike k
      August 6, 2018 at 3:18 pm

      “US has long had capability to target and destroy, both from earthbound and space with missles and thousands of mini suicide satelites.”

      Two misspellings in one sentence. Your statement is also without any foundation or relevance to the actual situation with regard to military realities. SF fantasy nonsense.

    • David G
      August 6, 2018 at 4:03 pm

      The U.S. has a secret space weapon that targets the enemy with a blazer? To turn them into preppies? Now we’re talking crimes against humanity.

      • August 6, 2018 at 6:22 pm

        A multi-layer system would deploy cardigans as well. And forget about crimes against humanity — this is whining of the losers. Experts are a proven method of bringing hostile or potentially hostile countries to, say, reduced economic capacities, but when a need or chance for influence emerges, deployment may be slow — recruiting, getting visas, air and hotel reservation can be a slow process. Locally recruitable personnel may be on “exotic vacations” and thus sartorially deficient. By recruiting locally and using in-space pre-positioned elements of expert/preppy wardrobe we can rapidly assemble expert panels even in the depths of Africa or Central Asia.

        • David G
          August 6, 2018 at 6:31 pm

          Lol. Gin and tonics at the yacht club are on me next time, Piotr.

          • backwardsevolution
            August 6, 2018 at 11:42 pm

            David – that’s funny!

        • T
          August 7, 2018 at 11:31 am

          > By recruiting locally and using in-space pre-positioned elements of expert/preppy wardrobe
          > we can rapidly assemble expert panels even in the depths of Africa or Central Asia.

          But this faces the same problem: effective countermeasures would be much cheaper and impossible to prevent: those notorious Russian and Chinese “honey-pot traps”…
          (and I am sure LGBT versions are available).

    • August 7, 2018 at 3:46 pm

      Years ahead but still having to buy Russian rocket engines…..hmmmmm.

  12. ronnie mitchell
    August 6, 2018 at 1:49 pm

    Well we have nuclear armed submarines to make sure every part of the earth is a military zone so all is left is ‘space’ and for war profiteers that area is unlimited.
    A once beautiful planet now has poisoned air and water and as the MIC are counting their profits, and expected profits, as they dance around the fires they keep lighting around the world they ignore and aid the worldwide disaster of global warming that continues to escalate in force coming at them from every direction.
    Something that will flood their mansions destroy their very own food, potable water and labor supply and their money will be worthless and a possible ‘nuclear winter’ following a nuclear weapons exchange from automated sites around the world on hair trigger alert systems will maximize the entire devastation from which no person will be exempt.Anywhere.

    Like something out the ‘Twilight Zone’ series I can envision those like Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, George Soros etc wandering around trying to buy water with truckloads of worthless money and the people they’ve hired as security decide money obviously doesn’t matter, the stocks of food won’t last long so that ‘job’ doesn’t matter anyway, ‘WE’ matter and must take things (whatever remains) into our own hands.
    Something that should’ve happened earlier for the sake of their lives and the future of their own children and grandchildren.

  13. F. G. Sanford
    August 6, 2018 at 1:36 pm

    I’m gonna go out on a limb here, and suggest that there’s nothing to worry about. I’m betting that, while there are plenty of delusional wannabe space cowboys among our military fanboys in Congress, the “real” scientists haven’t weighed in yet. Yep, even some of them would probably go along with this – just to get the research grants – but that isn’t going to change reality. First, they’d have to consider getting such a payload into earth orbit. Much of this talk surrounds so-called “space based” lasers and “directed energy weapons”. Those are theoretically possible, and prototypes probably exist. But the laser would have to convert electrical energy into a beam. The amount of energy required to shoot down a missile or satellite would necessitate something a little more robust than solar panels. Something along the lines of a nuclear reactor would do the trick. The ones they use in aircraft carriers would probably be almost big enough. If we could buy enough Russian rocket engines, we could probably get the pieces into space. Then, a team of Russians from the International Space Station could help us assemble it. I’m sure they’d be happy to lend a hand.

    Speaking of Russians, back in 1976, young Lieutenant Victor Belenko defected to the west in a MiG-25 Foxbat. Capable of firing missiles from 88,000 feet, the unarmed aircraft holds an altitude record of 118,000 feet. The prototype was designed in the 1950’s. Initially fielded as an interceptor to counter the threat of the American XB-71Valkyrie, the designers noted that it was also capable of intercepting incoming ICBMs…and shooting down satellites.

    Yep, all you wannabe space cowboys gotta keep in mind that the Rooskies can shoot down your toys with 1950’s technology. And, they’ve improved their stuff quite a bit since then. The MiG-31 is apparently quite an advancement. And by the way, just imagine what would happen as a nuclear reactor vaporizes from the heat of re-entry. It would be a spectacular display on a clear summer night’s eve. If you think global warming is a big problem, imagine a cloud of Uranium vapor the size of Argentina. Just a thought.

  14. elmerfudzie
    August 6, 2018 at 1:34 pm

    I’m still a bit fuzzy on a few issues built right into this article, which I must say, Mr Marshall provides a nice summary of; that is, the ongoing debate about militarized space

    The first thing I’m not entirely clear about is why our government chose to dismantle the Ground Wave Emergency Network or GWEN? The number of GWEN towers should have been doubled or tripled and expanded beyond our domestic borders, and not just scrapped. During an EW attack or any communications jamming, numbers still mean, a lot. The more GWEN towers, the more reconfigurations of communication channels remain possible, thus we maintain an unbroken communication link with our submarine forces. GWEN may also be adjusted to work in tandem with low flying drones armed with nothing but half mile long, filament thin, wire acting as a long wave antennae for the purposes of receiving and sending, low wave (one hundred and fifty cycles or less) communications, worldwide. Such drones should be nuclear powered, with a range that covers large areas of ocean surface,
    used only during crises, and launched from any of one our naval patrols.

    Near space weapons deployments, around ninety miles out or less, will be important for developing high velocity, unarmed, tungsten “arrows” weapons systems. In my view, Very Important, in terms of knocking out Deep Underground Military Bases (bear with me folks, another acronym) DUMB’s, hardened missile silo’s and or striking at deep tunnels constructed with rail systems that quickly relocate IRBM’s, ICBM’s to various surface launch points during the first few hours of a real crisis.

    Twenty years ago, the USAF had, in service, air to space, missiles capable of shooting down satellites, launched from fighter jets flying at high altitude. A still more disturbing and low tech weapon system to consider is a space capable missile and warhead armed with nothing else but shotgun pellets, capable of disbursement across large swaths of both commercial and military satellite zones, these pellets would act as high velocity bullets, circling the earth forever and at the same time, making swiss cheese out of anything they hit.

    Any retired admirals out there? we need expert opinions! Berkeley boys, speak up!

    • anon
      August 6, 2018 at 8:28 pm

      1. long-wave radio has low data rates, hard to encrypt, and still easy to jam;
      2. nuclear reactors too heavy for low-flying drones;
      3. unarmed munitions not likely to get far under the surface to bunkers;
      4. enough space trash to hit all satellites would also hit those of the source.

      • elmerfudzie
        August 7, 2018 at 1:55 am

        Reply to anon from elmerfudzie, In response to your observations: item 1: Visit the site; hafnium reactor based mini engines referenced here @ http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread126317/pg1. Item 2: not to worry, we’re a can-do nation, a bit of structural magnesium aluminum alloy, with beryllium or composite skin for the drones and presto! lift off weight will be A Okay. Item 3: Tungsten projectiles will reach a velocity between three and five miles per second, and with the additional help, if necessary, of a follow up barrage of tungsten missiles. Again, this is a can-do nation. Item four; High velocity shot gun like pellets, circling the earth, forever, pose a real threat to all military monitoring from space as well as global communications satellites. His excellency, Kim Jong Un already has a crude (near space) capability to exercise this option and to, forgive the pun, ride rough shot over his adversaries satellite systems.

  15. August 6, 2018 at 1:34 pm

    Our present military adventurism is already bankrupting the U.S. This year we are borrowing every penny the DoD spends and more. All we have to do is spend more money on something as totally useless as militarizing space and our creditors will be selling off their IOU’s for 10 cents on the dollar.

  16. August 6, 2018 at 12:34 pm

    The U.S. military’s goal of “full spectrum dominance,” insuring the “American century” and ongoing “American exceptionalism” = (as in ignoring international law). Remind me again how any of this is different than the Nazi devotion to their concepts of a – “master race” and “a thousand year reich” – both ensured through endless illegal military violence.

    • August 6, 2018 at 3:10 pm

      As you clearly imply, there is no difference. It’s a form of delusion exemplified today by Trump and Pompeo and Bolton and their ilk, no doubt with the support of Schumer, Clinton, Obama, etc. Both parties, as we all know, are linked below the waist, totally militarized siamese twins.

  17. mike k
    August 6, 2018 at 11:51 am

    The whole NASA “we are destined to live on other worlds” con job is really about $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$. To pretend that the whole space program is “for the benefit of mankind” is utter bullshit. Given the desperate needs of millions of our fellow humans, NASA is a criminal enterprise; money down a bottomless toilet.

  18. john wilson
    August 6, 2018 at 11:05 am

    MIC has already all but bankrupted the US and the spending on arms and ever more sophisticated weapons continues regardless of the futility of war. The Americans don’t need to be in a race to weaponize anything because they would weaponize Mars if they could get there.

  19. Drew Hunkins
    August 6, 2018 at 10:59 am

    “Militarizing outer space” isn’t foolhardy or stupid at all if you look at it from the perspective of the giant wasteful oligopolistic bloodthirsty defense [sic] contractors or from the perspective of the top careerist military brass. For these depraved greedhounds militarizing outer space is a lucrative bonanza beyond their wildest dreams.

    So for them they have perfectly rational and mercurial reasons to promote the militarization of outer space. For 90% of the United States population — more and more who are struggling every day — it’s indeed stupid and foolhardy. But what do they matter.

  20. Joe Tedesky
    August 6, 2018 at 9:38 am

    In a country where politicians always rally their crowds by talking ‘tough’, or promising their voters of how ‘they will go to DC and fight for us’, then taking the Samson Option into space for dear little old spoiled rotten Israel shouldn’t come as any surprise. This is what America is for, for war, and for more war after that. If the U.S. doesn’t wage war then America’s super duper wartime economy wouldn’t exist for the MIC to profit from. Just pay no never mind to instigating any kind of a peace, as war is the only game DC knows how to play. So why not should the U.S. wage war in outer space? I could answer that by stating of how we should save the human race, but then again I’d have better luck screaming that into a raging wind tunnel than alerting our DC critters to cut it out… oh well.

  21. mike k
    August 6, 2018 at 8:25 am

    The US is doing everything it can to ensure it’s reputation as the most dangerous terrorist nation on Earth. This is a recipe for global disaster, including probable human extinction. Those who the God’s would destroy, they first render insane……

    • Typingperson
      August 6, 2018 at 11:26 pm

      Or ignorant. And fully propagandized by MSM.

      All my right-thinking Dem liberal friends on FB and IRL get their news from MSNBC and CNN.

      They are all jacked up against Putin / Russia and Trump. Which they consider the same thing, in their ignorance.

      And could give a shit vs. illegal USA wars which, along with general military spending, consume 2/3 of our discretionary budget.

      Rather depressing and baffling.

      • CitizenOne
        August 7, 2018 at 9:27 pm

        Steven Seagal the Action Movie Hero was recently appointed special representative for Russia to ease the way for better US-Russia relations after being granted Russian citizenship in 2016. His mission is to sneak into the USA inside a Russian Trojan Nesting Doll popping out as the innermost troll doll and after defeating countless enemies including all of the US intelligence agencies with karate moves makes his way to the White House where he informs Trump that the USA and the free press which is the enemy of the people is against him and if he wants to survive he must go along with a daring escape plan. Dodging many Secret Service assassins on to his ultimate escape by SCUBA diving out off the coast of Virginia to an awaiting Russian Submarine, Along the way Trump and Seagal are attacked by US media sharks which Steven Seagal dispatches by injecting them with truth serum rendering them incapacitated. Once onboard the Russian submarine, Trump declares he is requesting political asylum from his persecutors in the USA. But separated from his loving wife and children Trump sneaks back into the USA along the Mexican border with Steven Segal and the dynamic duo defeat waves of border patrol agents and domestic security forces eventually reaching New York where they find the true map of Cortez’s city of gold. Distracted by the Gold the dynamic duo depart for Mexico in an attempt to find the hidden treasure but is apprehended by the Koch Brothers who have hacked his emails and have decided that the Gold will be theirs. The ultimate standoff occurs in the hills off the Sierra Madre Mountains in a standoff between the Koch Gangsters, Trump and Seagal. Seagal is killed and the Gold is stolen by the Kochs in a shootout. Trump is offered a permanent residence in Mexico by gracious hosts and lives out the remainder of his years sipping Pina Coladas, listening to songs and reminiscing about his great adventures.

  22. Tom Kath
    August 6, 2018 at 12:18 am

    Who was the warped idiot that first came up with the idea that we are God’s chosen ones, created especially to control everything on earth? A decidedly flawed concept surely destined to extinction.

    • Sam F
      August 6, 2018 at 9:24 am

      That notion of group virtue is a middle stage of tribalism in any group, after it has developed social and economic dependencies that allow demagogues to coerce the members. The tyrants must then create foreign enemies to pose falsely as protectors, to demand power in the group and accuse their opponents of disloyalty. This creates fear of dissent and enables increasing tyranny.

      That can be found in any group, often in multiple factions in isolated towns, and is consciously organized in politics. The primitive tyrants of every group bellow for more weapons to defeat imaginary threats.

    • Joe Wallace
      August 7, 2018 at 6:40 pm

      Tom Kath:

      As you write, the idea that we are “God’s chosen ones” is a “decidedly flawed concept surely destined to extinction,” but will the concept die before we all perish?

  23. Known Unknown
    August 5, 2018 at 11:14 pm

    I think the hysteria surrounding “Russiagate” and Trump is, to a large extent, a piece of ruling class theater (i.e., a psyop) designed to ensnare the public’s attention in a highly emotive, and utterly futile, wild goose chase while the PTB quietly continue their fleecing of the public good and the dismantling of the nation state system.

    Then I read an article like this one and realize the people in power really are bats**t insane and prepared to defend their ill-gotten gains to the bitter end. Can anyone really imagine these clowns, who talk unironically of “militarily dominating ” outer space, ever accepting America (and its idea-bereft and subservient European allies) as normal countries that mind their own business and accept that a lifestyle of conspicuous consumption which requires the military domination of the universe, no less, and the economic subjugation of every country on earth to function is unsustainable and extremely hostile to life?

    These people are crazy enough to think a massive orgy of death and destruction that ends human life on earth for the foreseeable future is more “noble” and “respectable” than learning to accept compromise and sacrifice like normal, non-psychopathic people who are not obsessed with hoarding hundreds of billions of dollars and maximizing their power at any cost. Dog help us all.

  24. Sam F
    August 5, 2018 at 10:32 pm

    It is difficult to believe that this is more than a bluster show for public support to throw more money at DoD. An unlimited frontier of war is just what Trump’s base does not want, and brings no Israeli bribes to the Dems or the Reps. Like the other “squandered opportunities to stop such threats through arms control” it well shows that other domains of conflict should be “managed by a wide range of international players.”

  25. Jeff Harrison
    August 5, 2018 at 10:01 pm

    Heinlein, writing science fiction in the ’50s fer chrissakes, warned that having weapons, especially nuclear weapons in outer space would allow for the creation of just about as tight a totalitarian dictatorship as you could imagine. Nation-states could oppose such things but just people? No. And even nation-states would be limited in what they can do to counter a nation that has surveillance satellites and weapons in space. Want to take out the orbiter with the weapon? The surveillance satellite sees you setting up your launch and the orbiter blows your missile up before you can launch.

    My country is far too irresponsible and power hungry to be trusted with something like that.

  26. Realist
    August 5, 2018 at 9:40 pm

    If the object is to bankrupt our nation, end civilisation and terminate all life on Earth, weaponizing space is definitely the way to go. It’s the logical next step for the crowd presently in control.

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