WIRED: Trump's 'America First' Policies Won't Work in Space

WIRED: Trump's 'America First' Policies Won't Work in Space

From WIRED Magazine online:

In a March op-ed published in The Hill, Scott Pace, director of the Space Policy Institute at George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, wrote that “primacy in space is inseparable from primacy in the world.” Pace, who’s expected be named the space council’s executive director, emphasized the need to support national security and priorities—an “America First” policy in space. But space is international, and like Antarctica, it’s not owned by anyone, so Pace and his colleagues should proceed with caution.

The United States alone has about 600 government, military, and commercial satellites in low-Earth orbit. The majority of them are GPS and communications satellites. If they were disrupted somehow, it would affect telephones, television, radio, navigation, and internet access.

But China and Russia—which clearly have their own national interests—also have hundreds of satellites each. If the US were to militarize satellites, even in the name of deterrence, it could lead to a dangerous arms race in space. All three countries have anti-satellite missiles as well, and each is also developing other technologies including ground-based lasers. While a war in space seems unlikely, there’s no reason to escalate tensions and risk outright conflict.
— https://www.wired.com/story/trumps-america-first-policies-wont-work-in-space/
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