Tag: Russia

New Pentagon Strategy to Defend U.S. Dominance in Space

Article by Sandra Erwin                             June 17, 2020                          (spacenews.com)

• On June 17th at a Pentagon news conference, the DoD’s unveiled a ten-year Defense Space Strategy to replace an Obama-era 2011 space strategy based upon the Trump administration’s 2018 national defense strategy that calls for the U.S. military to prepare to compete with rising military powers such as China and Russia.

• China and Russia have developed capabilities to challenge U.S. access to space and “present the most immediate and serious threats to U.S. space operations.” “Both countries consider space access and denial as critical components of their national and military strategies.” Threats from North Korea and Iran are also growing, the document states.

• “DoD has to confront the new reality that adversaries have more advanced weapons designed to target U.S. military satellites and deny the United States a key military advantage,” according to the new strategy paper. “Now we have to defend U.S. and allies to secure the domain.” The DoD will work with allies and with the private sector to ensure space superiority.

• Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Space Policy Steve Kitay said that the DoD has taken significant actions to stay ahead of other powers, such as the establishment of a) the U.S. Space Force as a new military service; b) the U.S. Space Command as a unified combatant command; and c) the Space Development Agency to help accelerate the acquisition of new technologies. The DoD recognizes there’s a space technology race underway and the United States has to accelerate the pace of innovation. Part of the strategy will be to “leverage commercial technological advancements and acquisition processes.”

• The DoD will focus on these key priorities: a) to protect and defend U.S. and commercial space capabilities; b) to deter and defeat adversary hostile use of space; c) to deliver advanced operational space capabilities; d) to bolster the domestic civil and commercial space industry; and e) to uphold internationally accepted standards of responsible behavior.

 

WASHINGTON — The Defense Department has released an updated space strategy that replaces the 2011 document issued by the Obama

                   Steve Kitay

administration.

The Defense Space Strategy unveiled June 17 provides broad guidance to DoD for “achieving desired conditions in space over the next 10 years,” Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Space Policy Steve Kitay said at a Pentagon news conference.

The space strategy builds on the Trump administration’s 2018 national defense strategy that calls for the U.S. military to prepare to compete with rising military powers such as China and Russia.

DoD will work to maintain space superiority, provide space capabilities to U.S. and allied forces, and ensure stability in space, the strategy says.

“DoD has to confront the new reality that adversaries have more advanced weapons designed to target U.S. military satellites and deny the United States a key military advantage,” says the strategy. “Now we have to defend U.S. and allies to secure the domain.”

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Coronavirus Not Slowing Russian or Chinese Space Activities, US General Says

Article by Marcus Weisgerber                             May 12, 2020                          (defenseone.com)

• In an April 15th statement (see here), the US Space Command stated that “satellites, which behaved similar to previous Russian satellites… exhibited characteristics of a space weapon” and that its maneuvers “would be interpreted as irresponsible and potentially threatening.”

• At an event on May 12th, Space Force Vice Commander Lt. Gen. David Thompson (pictured above) said that amid the coronavirus pandemic, “…the Russians’… penchant for unsafe and what I would consider unacceptable behavior in space has not slowed down.” Russia and China continue to launch military rockets and test space weapons, the Vice Commander warned. The US government has postponed several satellite launches due to the pandemic.

• Last month, Russia tested a satellite-killing missile capable of destroying low Earth orbit satellites. US Space Command also criticized Russia for operating two satellites close to American satellites. Earlier this week, a Russian rocket carrying a telescope disintegrated after launch, leaving behind a debris field that threatens satellites orbiting Earth. (see article here) Meanwhile in April, a Chinese rocket carrying an Indonesian satellite failed to reach orbit. (see article here)

 

Russia and China continue to launch military rockets and test space weapons amid the coronavirus pandemic, a top U.S. general said Tuesday.
“Unfortunately in the case of the Russians, their increasing penchant for unsafe and what I would consider unacceptable behavior in space has not slowed down,” Lt. Gen. David Thompson, the U.S. Space Force vice commander, said at a Mitchell Institute event. “I can’t tell you what they’re doing with their crews and their individuals, but based on their macro-level activities, their cadence has certainly not slowed down.”

Russia tested a satellite-killing missile last month, drawing scorn from U.S. military leaders who said the “missile system is capable of destroying satellites in low Earth orbit.” U.S. Space Command also criticized Russia for operating two satellites close to American satellites.

“These satellites, which behaved similar to previous Russian satellites that exhibited characteristics of a space weapon, conducted maneuvers near a U.S. government satellite that would be interpreted as irresponsible and potentially threatening in any other domain,” Space Command said in an April 15 statement.

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Pentagon’s UFO Videos Exposed in ‘The Basement Office’ Docu-Series

Article by Nick Pope                            May 6, 2020                              (nypost.com)

• On April 27th, the US Department of Defense confirmed that the three UAP/UFO videos taken by Navy pilots are genuine. But the DoD maintains that they don’t know what they are. If the Pentagon was hoping that the revelations about the UFO videos might be overlooked by a world focused on the coronavirus pandemic, it was wrong. The story made headlines all around the world.

• With the spotlight on the Navy videos, competing theories have been bandied about. Some think that it was some kind of pilot misperception or a glitch in the infrared cameras. Others claim that it was “black project” drone technology being blind-tested against the Navy fleet to see how they’d react. Some commentators thought Russia or China might be the culprit.

• The theory that attracted the most attention was that the mystery objects were extraterrestrial spacecraft. This writer, Nick Pope, hopes that it is extraterrestrials. The New York Post’s docu-series “The Basement Office”, in which Nick Pope is featured, probes all of these theories and puts some other classic UFO cases under the microscope. (see below for Episode 7: “Pentagon Releases Footage of UFOs”)

• If the Pentagon’s re-release of the UFO videos seems odd, their flip-flopping over the true nature of the DoD’s ‘Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program’ is truly bizarre. Since the existence of the AATIP was first revealed in December 2017, the Pentagon has changed its position on the role of the program multiple times. The Pentagon’s current position is that the program was not UFO/UAP related. Rather, it studied next-generation terrestrial aerospace threats.

• The problem is that a Defense Intelligence Agency letter to Congress (see here) listed 38 technical reports produced under the program. None of them related to Russian or Chinese aircraft. One related to the Drake Equation, used to estimate the number of civilizations in the galaxy. When Pope pointed out the disconnect, he was told the Pentagon was revising its line on the AATIP yet again. A new statement is expected soon.

• In a year when our lives have changed in ways that would have been unimaginable a few months ago, could the conspiracy theorists be right and might there be even bigger revelations ahead? Whatever happens, UFOs are now center stage in a way we’ve never seen before, being discussed seriously at the highest levels.

 

On April 27, the Department of Defense issued a statement confirming the release of three videos showing US Navy jets chasing “unidentified aerial phenomena” — that’s the approved military term for what the public calls UFOs. The videos had been in the public domain for some time, but there was always a degree of doubt about them. The Pentagon statement made it official: Yes, the videos are genuine, and no, the DOD still doesn’t know what these things are — the official categorization is “unidentified”.

                              Nick Pope

The timing of the Pentagon’s announcement drew a lot of comment. Why release these videos now, people asked, with the world’s attention focused on the coronavirus? Was this a classic example of “a good day to bury bad news”? If that was the Pentagon’s plan, it backfired badly. Perhaps because we’ve been so saturated with COVID-19 coverage, everyone was looking for something else. Far from being buried, the story made headlines all around the world.

UFOs generate controversy. The videos were debated furiously and in the resulting skeptic versus believer dogfight, competing theories were bandied about: Some people tried to explain everything in terms of pilot misperception and glitches or misreadings of the forward-looking infrared cameras on which the films were taken.

Others argued that it was “black project” technology being blind-tested against the Fleet, to see how they’d react. One hears a lot about hypersonic missiles and drone swarms these days. Given that such programs are highly classified and deeply compartmentalized, it’s possible that one part of the government wasn’t aware of what another part was doing. Other commentators thought Russia or China might be the culprit.

Inevitably though, the theory that attracted the most attention was the possibility that the mystery objects were extraterrestrial spacecraft. I’m undecided on all this, but I hope it’s extraterrestrials — martians would be much more fun than Russians. Season 2 of The Post’s docu-series “The Basement Office” will probe all of the theories, and put some other classic UFO cases under the microscope.

30:38 minute S2E7 of “The Basement Office” docu-series
entitled “Pentagon Releases Footage of UFOs” (“New York Post” YouTube)

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