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Thursday, May 19, 2005

Peace from Above 

You have two choices. Are you going to believe Scotty McClellan . . .
The White House said Wednesday that it is not looking at weaponizing space in the face of a newspaper report stating the US Air Force was seeking presidential authority that could lead to such a program.

"Let me make that clear right off the top, because you asked about the weaponization of space, and the policy that we're talking about is not looking at weaponizing space," White House spokesman Scott McClellan told reporters.

However, McClellan said that the administration of US President George W. Bush wants to ensure that its space assets are adequately protected . . . .

The [NYT] mentioned Air Force programs such as Global Strike, calling for a military space plane carrying precision-guided weapons that could strike from halfway around the world in 45 minutes.

The 'Rods From God' program aims to launch cylinders of tungsten, titanium or uranium from space to strike targets on the ground at speeds of about 11,500 kilometers per hour (7,200 miles per hour) with the force of a small nuclear weapon.

Other programs call for bouncing lethal laser beams off orbiting mirrors or high-altitude blimps, or turning radio waves into heat weapons . . . .

"We believe in the peaceful exploration of space," [McClellan] stressed.
. . . or your lyin' eyes?

(Read up on the U.S. Space Command's Vision for 2020 here.)

UPDATE (5/19): Just for the record . . . .
Russia would consider using force if necessary to respond if the US put a combat weapon into space, according to a senior Russian official . . . .

Vladimir Yermakov, senior counsellor at the Russian embassy in Washington, on Tuesday told a conference on space militarisation that Russia was working through diplomatic channels to urge the US not to move towards fielding weapons in space. But he said Russia would have to react, possibly with force, if the US successfully put a "combat weapon" in space.

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