US militarizes space while accusing Russia of doing so

Source: Blacklisted News

Image source: Blacklisted News

By Lucas Leiroz,
Published by Signs of the Times, 20 February 2024

Recently, the U.S. began spreading rumors about alleged Russian space-based nuclear weapons. According to American intelligence, Moscow is developing a powerful anti-satellite weapon to be deployed in space, thus violating international norms that prohibit the militarization of Earth’s orbit.

Mike Turner, head of the House Intelligence Committee, formally asked for the declassification of documents concerning the investigation on the “space-nukes”, stating that a deliberation on the case in the National Congress is necessary. According to Turner, American parliamentarians need to discuss this serious “threat” to U.S. national security, having therefore the requirement to fully release data obtained by intelligence on the subject.

Subsequently, the White House stated that there was no imminent threat to the country’s national security according to the information obtained so far. Spokespersons confirmed they are monitoring the possible existence of a Russian nuclear space program, but denied the existence of any evidence of a high-risk threat at the moment. As a result, once again American officials made contradictory statements, discrediting the image of U.S. authorities.

Moscow denied the accusations and stated that the rumors were intended to strengthen the anti-Russian establishment, pressuring parliamentarians to recognize the existence of a “threat” and thus approve the billion-dollar military aid package to Ukraine. Considering the domestic political stalemate in the U.S., with pro-war sectors failing to convince their opponents to continue aid to Kiev, it is very likely that the intention behind the spread of anti-Russian rumors is to actually increase fear among policymakers about a possible “danger”.

Obviously, as a major military power, the Russian Federation has its own anti-satellite systems and is able to employ them, if necessary, in a possible large-scale conflict scenario. However, the current tensions between Moscow and Washington, despite high, do not bring any need to use military force against American satellites, and there is therefore no “imminent threat” to the U.S. in the Russian arsenal.

In parallel, Moscow remains firmly committed to complying with international space law standards. The deployment of weapons of mass destruction in Earth’s orbit is banned by the treaties that regulate space activities. Therefore, even though it has weapons strong enough to inflict damage on enemy countries’ satellites, Russia is not willing to allocate nuclear weapons or weapons of mass destruction in outer space, as this would violate current regulations on the matter.

In fact, Russian actions regarding the outer space make it clear that Moscow intends to cooperate to prevent the militarization of Earth’s orbit. Russia, although it has the military capacity to do so, does not invest in “space-based” weapons, focusing its space activities on the peaceful and scientific sphere. This, however, is not the case with the U.S., which openly promotes the militarization of space, with constant efforts to turn Earth’s orbit into a true battlefield.

Since the creation of the U.S. Space Force in 2019, Washington has seen the militarization of space as a true strategic priority. At the time, then-American President Donald Trump had made it clear that the country’s objective was to achieve “American dominance in space.” Since then, several activities to increase American military space capabilities have been undertaken – many of them in partnership with other NATO countries and international allies.

In 2022, NATO began drafting a “space doctrine” based on “interoperability”. The following year, the alliance published a document exposing its main interests in space and pursuing American guidelines for the militarization of the orbit. According to analysts, the “interoperability” of NATO’s space activities simply means the creation of mechanisms for U.S. allies to help pay the high costs of military space development – while, on the other hand, only the Pentagon maintains real control of the activities and benefits from “space control”.

“The U.S. Space Command planning document stated that the U.S. will ‘control and dominate space and deny other nations if necessary access to space (…) At the Space Command HQ in Colorado just above their doorway they have a sign that reads ‘Master of Space (…) Even with all its resources the U.S. can’t afford to pay for its ‘Master of Space’ plan by itself (…) [In order to maintain its dominance], the U.S. sets up a story line that it ‘must protect space’ from the dark forces in Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea (…) Interoperability’ ensures that all NATO members purchase new expensive space technologies mostly from U.S. aerospace corporations like Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and others. In addition, ‘interoperability’ means that all space information, surveillance, and targeting is run through the U.S.-dominated system. In other words, NATO allies help pay for these costly space warfare systems but the Pentagon controls the ‘tip of the spear’,” Professor Bruce Gagnon, director of the Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space, once said commenting on the topic.

All these factors lead us to believe that there really was an attempt on the part of the U.S. to create a smokescreen for its own space militarization activities. By pointing out the existence of a “Russian danger”, Washington legitimizes its own “reactive” policies, thus encouraging increased investment in space weapons in NATO. In the same sense, this smokescreen helps to pressure parliamentarians to revise their stance on supporting Ukraine. With the popularity of the anti-Russian war gradually decreasing, the creation of a non-existent threat could serve as a legitimizing factor for the conflict.

In addition to all this, it is curious how contradictory U.S. narratives about Russia fluctuate. Previously, the American media accused the Russians of fighting using shovels due to the lack of weapons. Now, on the other hand, they accuse Russia of deploying nuclear weapons from space. These lies only worsen the mainstream media’s own image among Western public opinion, leading to absolute discredit.

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