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« Sauron at the Gates! | Main | Update: The World's First Invisibility Cloak »


J. Nielsen

It's called securing peace by preparing for war. It's really not a very difficult concept.


Well, we should listen to what Al has to say. He did invent the internet(!) after all. Would we rather wait until China or another power decides to put weapons in space? They already have used lasers to blind some of our satellites. What really bugs me though is that Wirefly, an inphonic front supported this. That company has so many scandals with its cellphone rebate business it is scary. I could do without Gore or wirefly in space policy.

Lance Winslow

Al Gore goes to the Space Conference and uses this platform to bash the Bush Administration? Well that is certainly going to win friends and influence people? Such hypocrisy. On one hand he talks about bringing people together around the world and building a seamless policy between government and industry and then bashes Government Leadership? That is completely the wrong message. "Hubristic" well why not give Mr. Gore a mirror? This Bush Bashing needs to stop, it is negative and will only cause a reciprocal response and that is hardly good for the future of Space. Indeed, Al Gore talking about Iraq and comparing that to anything about the United States’ leadership position in the future of Space is out of line.


Space, outside satellites, was pretty stagnate. Darn near dead. Bush has help shine some much needed light and guidance on the situation. Though I do like Gore's constant opposition without ever presenting a solution. That’s why Gore or hairy Kerry is not our chief, and why Bush has his second term.


Space, outside satellites, was pretty stagnate. Darn near dead. Bush has help shine some much needed light and guidance on the situation. Though I do like Gore's constant opposition without ever presenting a solution. That’s why Gore or hairy Kerry is not our chief, and why Bush has his second term.

Jim Rohrich

Yawn. Gore is a has-been. Him and moron number 1 accomplished nothing in space while in office for 8 years. Amend that... we have GoreSat sitting in a warehouse somewhere, and the X-33 project burned through a couple billion dollars, and ... no vehicle.


It is arrogant for Bush to claim sole ownership of space to the USA. He is arrogant in insuniating that only the USA can have control of space. Space belongs to humanity and not only to one nation. It should be used for peacefull enterprise, yes! Being so arrogant will develop even more enemies than the USA has now.


» http://www.theonion.com/content/node/41858

» http://www.theonion.com/content/node/47977


I'd just like to take this opportunity to congratulate the people of the United States on electing the most unintelligent president ever.
Okay - anyone can make a mistake.
Then you elected him again.

You get what you deserve.
Perhaps he is the perfect peoples representative


Here we go again, algore is bashing Pres. Bush about some policy. Why is it necessary at an event that is supposed to be about the civilian use of space is algore even speaking? What did he and his buddy do for 8 years to advance the civilian use of space? How about focusing on something useful, rather than this has been. How about reporting on how we might get past the het wow, we can fly rich people into space, and spending a little time on the industrial development of space based products? Once we have a reason to g0o into space other than I have enough money to do it, we might see a permanent presence in space and realize some of that potential I grew up listening to. But as long as the "news" is about the latest controversy, we will never bring people together to see a real future in space. Now THAT might make a good article.


I continue to be baffled at the reaction to the space policy. All it does is essentially warn that any interference in our access to space or our property in space could be considered an act of war.

That's perfectly consistent with the international approach to that other "space" we share, the sea. You know, "freedom of the seas"? Remember the Lusitania? A satellite in space is essentially the same as a ship in international waters. Attack US shipping in international waters, particularly a military vessel, and see what you get. This is no different.

Given that Russia revealed that it has tested anti-satellite weapons in the 80s (after the US abandoned ours because they violated treaties forbidding weapons in space), and China is developing similar weapons as well as lasers designed to blind US satellites, which they have tested against US satellites several times over the last 3 years, this seems like a timely discussion and one that could lessen the risk of war, not increase it.

It's good to know where the boundaries are.


Gore has good intentions. Bush bashing or not, Bush HAS lied to us before. What makes you think there not willing to commit the same act again. We should be encouraging more countries to enter the space age with us, instead of leaving the rest of the world in the dust like we have for the last 50 years. We need to ensure that we as civilians also get the privilage to travel to space freely and not have to worry about having government choke points that only allow us to stay withing their jurisdiction. Its one thing to protect us and another to take away our personal rights.


"Being so arrogant will develop even more enemies than the USA has now."

Cool. I was really beginning to worry that we were going to run out of enemies, but if this is true then we should be good until 2050. /snark

Hans, we are also advocates of the peaceful use of the oceans. To that purpose we make sure we have the biggest, baddest naval fleet in the world. Peace within the borders of a country requires a police force to prevent criminals running rampant. International peace requires a country, or group of countries, that respect rights and are willing and able to protect them. Is your country capable of enforcing international peace, Hans? If not, then STFU. You're getting a free ride courtesy of the US taxpayer. Next time there's ethnic cleansing in the Balkans, deal with it yourself.


1st of all when we first invaded Iraq it was because they invaded Kuwait who asked for our help and Iraq was poised to invade Saudi Arabia. The US has made a lot of investments in the infrastucture and it would be foolish to let a country come in and take it over. The second war don't forget Is not only that US jets were being shot at in the no fly zone which constitutes a void in treaties that were signed that ended the first war. Saddam also called for a Jihad in 91 soon after terrorist come into the picture claiming that the US because of it's sanctions on Iraq are killing 100,000 muslim babies. It was a matter of time before saddam started teaming up with terrorist indirectly if he had no already done so. Saddam was being non compliant and shady in treaties he signed after the first gulf war. We did do the right thing because we and UN pu Israel on the map UN and Iraq was paying the plo famalies 25,000 to blow themsevlves up. He was inflaming the situation so Israel would react which would create a major middle eastern war. We told Israel we would handle the situation and not to overreact. People could speak all the want when events have already taken place could a should a would a There was never any closure in the first gulf war a second war was inevitable. Secondly you have China trying so hard to steal American military technology as well as shooting lasers at american satelites Russian Generals saying the cold war is not over and becoming upset that the US wants Limited BMD in Poland to protect them from Iran who has already threatend Europe who's America's Allies that they have an economic infrastucture with. Where is Russia when the US wanted sanctions on Iran They sold them the dam missiles that have longer range that can reach Europe. Its always good to be on step ahead of your comptetion. It's all about power and countries that think they can get away with doing something with little or no consequence will It's just human nature look at human history. To be green and think that other country with the capability to weaponarize space would not do so to protect their interest. Wake up should we appease other countries for there interest. If other Countries like Russia and China are not helping clamp down on countries like Iran and North Korea the US is caught up in a catch 22. In this day and age with all the threats that these presidents are saying it's only inevitable that nuclear war will happen it's better to be prepared if we can't stop the spread of nuclear missile and one of the logical steps is to weaponize space which is scary but we live in scary times.


Wow. I'm going to light up a bong, watch Al-Gore again, and sing a rousing chorus of kumbayah.



Our space policy is just that - ours. We can't stop any sovereign nation from developing their own programs and attempts to do so always fail, either quickly or slowly. High tech weapons are glamorous but an exploding sneaker is the cheapest stealth weapon money can buy.


Bush is a moron, and people who defend Bush are morons. Do you honestly believe Goerge Bush cares about your well-being? Do you think he cares if we have comprehensive goals for our space program? George Bush doesn't give a rats ass about you or this country. He only cares about money. He will do anything and say anything to get more money. Bush's policies for our country are 10 times worse than the Regan administration could have even dreamed. You know the Regan administration; the dimwits who wrote policies based on the firm belief that the world was coming to an end and that anything they did was of no real consequence because Christ would fix it when he got here. What could be worse than Regan's absolute disregard for the common good? George Bush. Win one for the Gipper George.


There is a reason that the space-faring nations decided against the militarization of space. There is a reason that the UN vote on the ban of an arms race in space won 160-1 (US being the vote against such an arms race). Regardless of whether we are Republicans or Democrats, Americans or foreigners, we have a planet that is going to be much harder to live on for the next generation. Why should we allow things in space that could make it even worse in an instant?


The comments on this forum indicate the difference between readers of "Popular Science" and readers of "Scientific American." Scientific American readers think very deeply about a lot of subjects, including politics.

Welda Graybeal

To all of you doubting Thomases!
I don't know much about space or satellites etc.- However, I've lived long enough in my 76 years to know it is a disasterous idea to make a Policy to militarize outer space. Space belongs to no nation. It would be the ultimate power for Bush. He's gone totally mad with power.

When he's finally finished taking care of things on earth he'll broaden his brilliance to the horizon and beyond. Bush's delusion of grandeur has to be motivated by the hope he'll get to sit on the right side of God!

Brad Pennock

The Bush Administration completely shreds another very worthy and useful treaty...the Outer Space Treaty of 1967: http://www.state.gov/t/ac/trt/5181.htm


I love Bush, I love guns, I love killing people that have abortions. All you pinko commies who think global warming is real, and that hugging people solves anything have never had the power of a gun in your hand.

We will rule the world, it is our manafest destiny.

Wesley Cannon

What is the problem? This is a statement of US Space policy, not the UN. When you have China blinding satellites in orbit, is it not unreasonable to state the US intentions to make sure that our use of space goes unhindered? It also clearly states that it is US policy to encourage the peaceful use of space by all parties.

Jim O

I quote Gore in this new article, but not with affection:

In outer-space war of words escalates
Russians overreacting on the basis of overwrought reports on U.S. policy
ANALYSIS // James Oberg, NBC News space analyst
Special to MSNBC // Updated: 6:03 p.m. CT Nov 10, 2006
International frictions over space policy took a rising turn this week, with Russian President Vladimir Putin accusing unnamed countries — clearly meaning the United States and perhaps Israel — of "seeking to untie their hands in order to take weapons to outer space, including nuclear weapons."

link to it and read the rest...


good evening all,
i must say, these are some good comments, and in lieu of my current positions, both as a DoD contractor in Iraq, and a member of the Space Generation, i felt compelled to include some insights into possible meanings of this policy, from my own interpretations of course, intended applications and how it was received by members in the international community that focus on the goal of space applications.
first off of course, is to analyze the policy as posted in a previous comment. from my own reading, i interpreted it as more a defenitive stance on US Policy regarding Space Defense, yes, much like International Waters. more so mayhaps of alleged Chinese interference with US space-based technoligies. As i recall, both parties involved denied any such occurance took place, so you could see this "belligerence" as a cumulitive measure in order to warn others against a simular transgression, as stated in the Outer Space Treaty, also posted in a comment previous to this.
here is a posting taken from Space Generation's TALK mail list on this very policy sent out 10/23/06, the first comment by SGC's point of contact in India, and J.D. Burke, one of the origianals of JPL:
Dear Space Friends,
> If you review the US Space Policy, the current document that has
>been signed by the US President, it clearly asserts that the US sees
>and seeks to occupy a strong and secure position for itself in
>future space activities whilst blocking any future arms regulation
>to question its defence activities in space.
> Space Weaponisation has been something that has always been a
>subject Space Generation has a strong opposition to. Recently, the
>NASA Administrator, Michael Griffin addressed the IAC in Valencia
>and talked about international cooperation in space - is
>cooperation going to be limited to flying foreign astronauts,
>building a foreign mission's payload or launching it? When are we
>really going to establish that Space indeed is a frontier with no
>border and boundaries, or are we ever?
> So what do you think? I would like to invite people from all over
>the world on our talk list to comment on what they see as the
>potential outcomes of this. Maybe you can post your thoughts to the
>group and this would make a new feature on our website!
Thank you Bee, I do hope that there will be a worldwide discussion. I
propose to contribute to it by giving you all some information that
many of you may not know about.
First some background and recommended reading:
R. Cargill Hall is the author of the book, Lunar Impact, NASA
SP-4210. It is the definitive history of Project Ranger, the first
American attempt to place operating instruments on the surface of the
Moon. I was Ranger's first Project Manager. I donated my original
signed copy of the book to the ISU library.
Hall is now historian emeritus of the once super-secret National
Reconnaissance Office. In the CIA, during the same years as those of
Ranger, the CIA's CORONA satellite program did much to stabilize the
strategic situation between the US and the USSR, and that success led
on to a series of high-priority space projects guided by NRO.
After my time as Ranger Project Manager, I served in CIA headquarters
as a resident consultant, working primarily on aspects of the
US-Soviet lunar and planetary contest. Reports on that work have been
declassified and placed in the US National Archives, as have other
documents about strategic space missions. One of several good books
on early reconnaissance missions is Eye in the Sky (Smithsonian),
Edited by Dwayne A. Day, John Logsdon and Brian Latell.
I can also recommend an excellent CORONA article in Physics Today
(February 1997) by Albert D. Wheelon, the CIA's Deputy Director of
Science and Technology under whose direction I worked.
American space policy was formed during those years into the pattern
that has existed ever since then. Cargill Hall regularly sends to me
reports describing the evolution of that policy, as reflected in
Presidential Directives and other official documents.
I strongly recommend that anyone who wishes to engage in this present
e-mail discussion visit the following Web site:


There you will find a listing of literature from the Marshall
Institute, tracing the evolution of American space policy under all
of the Administrations since that of President Eisenhower.
You can see there that this latest policy statement from the Bush
Administration is really nothing new. What is new is that world
opinion, energized by other unilateral statements and actions of this
Administration, sees this statement as a realization of what people
in the more belligerent parts of America's space enterprise have
wanted all along; namely an ability to control space and deny it to
As pointed out to us at ISU by both Pete Worden and Will Marshall,
that position, though long advocated by some people in the USA, has
never yet prevailed."

i would also like to point out that NASA is funding a conference soon to happen in Banglanore, so i don't believe that the white house is trying to polarise space, otherwise, why blow the money?
i hope this may have brought some inflection to the policy. i would suggest those still curious on this matter might like to visit these websites as well:



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