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Monday | October 13, 2003

Rumsfeld May Have Something to Say About a Chinese in Space

By Meteor Blades

If, as expected, China successfully launches its first “taikonaut” for a 14-orbit ride around the planet this coming week, count on a flurry of Op-Eds spouting the Administration line regarding the need for ballistic missile defense and for weaponizing outer space.

Ever since the Report of the Commission to Assess United States National Security Space Management and Organization came out two and a half years ago, it’s been apparent that the U.S. goal under Bush – despite nearly unanimous international opposition – is to move ahead with ensuring that nearby outer space is the next battlefield.

Known also as the 2nd Rumsfeld Commission, the CAUSNSSMO concluded that it is inevitable that weapons will be introduced into space, and that the U.S. must not allow its supremacy there to be challenged.

Aghast critics have said: What’s the threat?

China’s launch of its first human into space will no doubt offer the opportunity to answer that question with one word: Beijing.

In July, the Department of Defense issued its annual The Military Power of the People's Republic of China. The report noted:

"Publicly, China opposes the militarization of space and seeks to prevent the development of US anti-satellites systems and space-based missile defenses. Privately, however, China's leaders view [moves to militarize space] ... as inevitabilities."

Among the report’s findings: China is creating anti-satellite weaponry, building new “heavy-lift” rockets and working on electronic warfare techniques to jam receivers used by Global Positioning System (GPS), a crucial element of the Pentagon’s smart weapons targeting capabilities.

The DoD report also quotes Captain Shen Zhongchang from the Chinese Navy Research Institute to the effect that a weaker country might defeat one with superior forces by attacking its space-based communications and surveillance systems.

"The mastery of outer space will be a requisite for military victory, with outer space becoming the new commanding heights for combat," the DoD quotes Shen as saying.

Posted October 13, 2003 12:46 AM | Comments (84)


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