[FPSPACE] Weapons in space

Zeger Nuyens dokter.nuyens at pandora.be
Fri Oct 15 08:16:09 EDT 2004

 From Novosti: Russia weary of new American radar system directed 
"primarily against russian satellites"

> MOSCOW, (Andrei Kislyakov, RIA Novosti political analyst) - In the 
> near future, Russia will finish upgrading its satellite 
> constellations. "In 2005, the Space Force will receive nine spacecraft 
> and six rockets from the country's military and industrial sector," 
> Deputy Defense Minister and General of the Armies Andrei Moskovsky said.
> This is expected because Russian military experts and others have 
> predicted that space will play an increasingly important role in 
> ensuring national security.
> However, anti-satellite systems and other weaponry might be deployed 
> in space as a retaliatory measure.
> Realizing the danger, Russia and China submitted draft basic elements 
> of a comprehensive accord on the non-deployment of space weapons at 
> the Conference on Disarmament in 2002. In particular, the document 
> stipulated commitments not to place any weapons systems in orbit, not 
> deploy space weapons on celestial bodies and not to resort to the 
> threat or use of force against space objects.
> On October 5, 2004, Russia's permanent representative to the UN in 
> Geneva made an important statement in New York, noting that Russia 
> pledged not to be the first to deploy any weapons in outer space, and 
> that Russia called on all space powers to follow its example.
> The Russian initiative was a logical step by a country that recognizes 
> its responsibility when leading world powers opt for military-space 
> defense doctrines. An analytical report that the Tsiolkovsky space 
> exploration academy prepared in early October, speaks volumes in this 
> connection.
> "The creation of dual purpose space systems and complexes increases 
> the effectiveness of the Space Forces and is an essential component to 
> maintaining national security," the report reads. The academy's 
> experts believe that developing new early warning, communications, 
> troop control, space reconnaissance, global navigation, meteorological 
> and communications systems and integrating weapons control and troop 
> control systemsis a top priority.
> Spacecraft, which are not technically weapons, facilitate the 
> effective use of modern military technology and weapons. As a result, 
> the deployment of orbital anti-satellite systems must be prevented 
> both de jure and de facto. Otherwise, the world would face an 
> unprecedented arms race in outer space; no computer can predict the 
> consequences of that arms race.
> Therefore, it is necessary to study the possibility of drafting 
> special accords that would restrict "passive actions" like 
> dual-purpose satellite systems. Ivan Meshcherikov, vice president of 
> the Tsiolkovsky Academy, thinks that the new American system is a 
> serious threat to Russia's entire orbital cluster, especially Glonass 
> navigation and communications satellites.
> According to him, the United States is currently deploying new ground 
> radars, which are primarily directed against Russian satellites. 
> "Russia's Glonass navigation system and the United States' GPS have 
> the same frequency and the satellites flying on similar orbital 
> paths," he said. "Still we know that GPS can switch to different 
> frequencies, and our satellites would be defenseless."
> Consequently, numerous objectives must be accomplished before a 
> genuinely comprehensive peaceful space accord can be drafted. However, 
> time is running out.

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