Wednesday, October 18, 2006

"Bush Sets Defense As Space Priority:"

"U.S. Says Shift Is Not A Step Toward Arms; Experts Say It Could Be"
By Marc Kaufman, The Washington Post, October 18, 2006.

The first full revision of the White House statement of U.S. space policy in 10 years, "emphasizes security issues, encourages private enterprise in space, and characterizes the role of U.S. space diplomacy largely in terms of persuading other nations to support U.S. policy."

"Michael Krepon, co-founder of the Henry L. Stimson Center, a nonpartisan think tank that follows the space-weaponry issue, said the policy changes will reinforce international suspicions that the United States may seek to develop, test and deploy space weapons. The concerns are amplified, he said, by the administration's refusal to enter negotiations or even less formal discussions on the subject.
"The Clinton policy opened the door to developing space weapons, but that administration never did anything about it," Krepon said. "The Bush policy now goes further."
"Theresa Hitchens, director of the nonpartisan Center for Defense Information in Washington, said that the new policy 'kicks the door a little more open to a space-war fighting strategy' and has a 'very unilateral tone to it.'

If the U.S. space policy is more focused on military applications, I suspect it will be less likely to produce environmental information that would militate against the Bush (lack of) environmental policies, and less likely to produce scientific results.

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