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US Military Warns: China, Russia Soon Able to Knock US Hardware Out of the Sky

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It is widely presumed by analysts and experts that the U.S. military would ultimately emerge victorious from any head-to-head conflict with any other military power around the globe, including China and Russia.

A significant reason for that belief is the fact that our military enjoys an incredible advantage over all others thanks to its many satellites in low-earth orbit that provide the military with advanced and rapid communications, surveillance capabilties, weather monitoring, and other functions crucial to modern warfare.

However, the outcome of a potential conflict with a rival like China or Russia is far less certain without the many benefits provided by that extensive satellite coverage. And according to a report from the Pentagon’s Joint Staff intelligence directorate, also known as J-2, disrupting or destroying the coverage the United States relies on has become a top goal of those rivals.

The Washington Free Beacon reported on the sobering glimpse at the vulnerable reality outlined in the J-2 study, namely that “China and Russia will be capable of severely disrupting or destroying U.S. satellites in low-earth orbit” within the next few years, possibly as soon as 2020.

Both China and Russia are currently developing or fine-tuning an array of anti-satellite weapons to potentially be used in the future against U.S. assets in space.

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Those weapons include: ground- and air-launched missiles, cyber attacks, high-tech lasers and energy beams, electronic signal jammers, electromagnetic pulses and even small, maneuverable satellites of their own that can be directed to attack and/or destroy U.S. satellites.

The warning from the Pentagon’s J-2 bore a remarkable similarity to warnings issued by Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats in congressional testimony in May of 2017.

“We assess that Russia and China perceive a need to offset any U.S. military advantage derived from military, civil, or commercial space systems and are increasingly considering attacks against satellite systems as part of their future warfare doctrine,” Coats stated.

“Both will continue to pursue a full range of anti-satellite weapons as a means to reduce U.S. military effectiveness,” he continued, and added that both nations were seeking to forge international agreements that would limit potential U.S. defenses in space against such weapons in the future.

Do you worry about our nation's rivals taking out our vulnerable satellite systems?

It is worth noting that all of this is really nothing new, as some of our readers no doubt recall the “Star Wars” space race between the U.S. and Soviet Union during the Cold War.

The U.S. had developed an anti-satellite missile known as the ASM-135, which was ultimately defunded by Congress — but Russia never ceased development of its own anti-satellite program, and now China has launched its own efforts in that area.

Sadly, a separate report recently issued by the National Institute for Public Policy took note of the exceptional vulnerability of the low-orbit satellite systems the U.S. has come to rely so heavily.

“U.S. space systems are among the most fragile and vulnerable assets operated by the U.S. military,” stated former Pentagon missile expert Steve Lambakis in the report. “This vulnerable communications and data collection, processing, and distribution infrastructure is worth billions of dollars and is vital to nearly every activity of the United States and, increasingly, the armed forces of U.S. allies.”

The growing threat that rivals like China and Russia now pose against our array of space-based assets is a risk to our national security that simply cannot be tolerated.

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Hopefully, the Pentagon is quietly hard at work with developments of its own that would effectively guard against the varied threats posed against the country’s satellites.

The risk of having to fight without them is unacceptable.

Share this story on Facebook to help spread this warning from the Pentagon about the potential risks posed to our nation’s satellites in space by China and Russia.

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Ben Marquis is a writer who identifies as a constitutional conservative/libertarian. He has written about current events and politics for The Western Journal since 2014. His focus is on protecting the First and Second Amendments.
Ben Marquis has written on current events and politics for The Western Journal since 2014. He reads voraciously and writes about the news of the day from a conservative-libertarian perspective. He is an advocate for a more constitutional government and a staunch defender of the Second Amendment, which protects the rest of our natural rights. He lives in Little Rock, Arkansas, with the love of his life as well as four dogs and four cats.
Birthplace
Louisiana
Nationality
American
Education
The School of Life
Location
Little Rock, Arkansas
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics




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