Post submitted by Emery Chandler, a member of the U. S. Air Force.
Reuters for Yahoo recently reported the development of china’s space plane which has some similarity to our x-37. China started their space program much like Russia- starting out via military ballistic defense and moving forward to counter Americas programs. It appears China has responded with this new spacecraft which it has started testing via airdrops and stability flights.
The E.U. (European Union) has expressed a plan for developing their version of our x-37 as also reported from Yahoo. S0, why is everyone copying our space vehicles and programs? Early 2008 Russia, China and 19 other nations said they would create a military space force (non-allied) if America continues its programs. You may note the same thing happened with stealth fighters, Russia developed their T-50 and China’s J-31 and J-20, other nations are in the works over the stealth formula. Military strategy holds that who ever holds the high ground will win the war. In World War One, the sea was the high ground and air assets forced things to move, in World War Two, whoever held the air held the high ground, and the future holds that who ever has space domination will have the highest ground. The idea is if you have a small stone sized space vehicle with a high energy laser or a rocket, one could maneuver it around an enemy vehicle and destroy it, be it civilian or military.
America relies heavily on space based units for daily operations which include; TV, Radio, internet, GPS, traffic lights, phones, cars, airplanes, and weather units. The pentagon released a report in 2005(?) stating the biggest threat, more than nuclear war, was an electronics based attack on space assets due to the vulnerability of internet operations and space born operations. They went on to further mention if a vehicle with an electro-magnetic-pulse (E.M.P.) generator was used following a straight line path, 2/3’s of the country would instantly be shut down. As a result the defense initiative holds that America must be dominant in the domain of space, hence the programs from the Air Force followed up by Army and Naval programs. These weapons are straight out of a sci-fi movie and some are being experimented with, such as High Energy Lasers (H.E.L.s), Parasite vehicles (they attach or fire upon an enemy space asset), and fighter jet capabilities to shoot down satellites (such as the F-15 E and the F-22).
If we are to keep our military space program it would need to become secret, less aggressive, and more defensive. Much debate is called for in future moves, what do you think? What would you like to see?