U.S. “Space Force” Program Gets Downfall & What is Space Treaty.?
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U.S. “Space Force” Program Gets Downfall & What is Space Treaty.?

November 22, 2019

Trump’s “Space Force” Dream Program
Become Downfall. US Lawmakers Turn Down Space Force Amendment.
President Donald Trump is proposing a new branch of the military called the “Space Force”
to defend the US in the event of a space war. The House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday
voted down a move to slow the work for the “Space Force” program, The Hill wrote.
The amendment was proposed by Ohio Republican Mike Turner during the panel’s markup of
the National Defense Authorization Act. Turner argued that since the feasibility of
a space force, remains unclear, the law makers should wait for a pertinent assessment by
the Pentagon to be released this summer. In its portion of the 2019 defense policy
bill, the House Armed Services’ Strategic Forces Subcommittee is proposing a new US
Space Command in lieu of a separate space service.
However, Republican Mike Rogers and Democrat Jim Coper, the top lawmakers on the committee
and leading proponents of establishing a separate Space Corps, insist that an independent space
service is the best way to go. President Donald Trump announced his idea
to establish a Space Force when meeting with Marine Corps service members in March.
“Space is a war-fighting domain, just like the land, air, and sea,” Trump said. “We may
even have a Space Force, develop another one, Space Force. We have the Air Force, we’ll
have the Space Force,” he added. Earlier this month, Trump told members of
the Army academy football team that in addition to the five branches of the military “we are
actually thinking of a sixth — that would be the Space Force. Does that make sense?
While the Outer Space Treaty of 1967 bans the placement of weapons of mass destruction
in Earth’s orbit, there’s no comprehensive agreement regarding the use of space-based
weapons, nor any international accord on what, exactly, is considered a space weapon.
Asked space lawyer Michael Listner for the details on whether or not Trump’s plan could
land the states in legal trouble. The basic answer? There is none.
It’s complicated. Judging the legality of Space Force comes
down to an old, but still important document, called The Outer Space Treaty, which went
into effect in 1967. It’s a critically important document for space law. It essentially says
that space belongs to no one nation or private company or individual. It’s intentionally
vague, according to Listner, and that’s where everything gets complicated.
Now, what is ‘space’? We can talk hours about the legalities of where space is, because
there is no internationally recognized definition about where the atmosphere ends and space
begins. Even though any weapon of mass destruction is prohibited from being placed in space,
it doesn’t prohibit military activity so long as it’s for ‘peaceful purposes.’”
Listner tells, when if Space Force violates the Outer Space Treaty. “[But] it depends
what the mission of the space force is. I really detest the term ‘war in space’
because this isn’t a science fiction movie — I mean, we recently recognized space as
a domain or a theater of war. But we’re not fighting for territory in outer space.”
This raises some important questions, especially considering Trump’s speech back in March
didn’t sound so “peaceful.” “My new national strategy for space recognizes
that space is a war-fighting domain, just like the land, air, and sea,” the president
told a crowd of military members in San Diego, California. “We might even have a space
force. Develop another one.” Perhaps the only way to really understand
the legality of a space force is to update the Outer Space Treaty. Listner says he thinks
the document is “of another time,” and that it was created for Cold War issues. Perhaps
it’s due for some revisions. Let’s just hope the ambiguity gets cleared
up before we are in need of some real-life Jedis.
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