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Obama Administration Space Report Coming in December?; Obama Seeking Space Weapons Ban January 26, 2009

Posted by Nick Azer in NASA, Obama, space conflict.
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There’s an analysis article from Reuters today highlighting the Obama policy statements on the official White House site regarding the seeking of a space weapons ban (“The Obama-Biden Administration will restore American leadership on space issues, seeking a worldwide ban on weapons that interfere with military and commercial satellites”), but something I found even more notable is a quote at the end of the article from a defense official:

“Another defense official, who asked not to be named, said the new administration would work through the complex military space issues during a defense review to be completed by September, and as part of a space report due in December.”- “Challenges loom as Obama seeks space weapons ban“, Andrea Shalal-Esa, Reuters

While Obama’s interest in a space weapons ban was noted in his detailed campaign space policy document, this ‘space report due in December’ gives some new insight into the Obama administration’s timeline as far as movement on the space front.

Considering how in-depth that campaign space plan was, and the extent of NASA’s Constellation program, this could be an extremely significant report–save the date!

As far as an international treaty banning space weapons, it’s an idea that sounds like a tough sell, but that has been supported by Russia and China as recently as February 2008.

Such a treaty theoretically could not only address satellite warfare, but intralunar relations and potential weapons systems on the Moon—a ban or limit on lunar weapons systems is probably critical to successful colonization, due to the expense and resources involved (the risk is high enough as it is). While colonial wars have been more than a little common in human history, and both Mars itself and NASA’s new Ares rockets are named after the god of war/bloodlust, lunar colonization could prove to be an opportunity to forge a new tradition…if at least out of convenience (mining helium-3 will be harder when being shot at), if nothing else.

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