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Lawmakers demand an open dialogue on China’s as well as Russia’s space and nuclear weapons advancements

ByAdam Kowalski

Mar 3, 2021

During a proceeding on February 23, the officials of the House Armed Services Committee‘s strategic forces subcommittee called on the Defense Department as well as other agencies to talk more openly about the threats presented by Russia and China as they accelerate their space as well as nuclear weapons technologies. The subcommittee welcomed experts from think tanks to speak about Russia’s as well as China’s nuclear and space effectiveness and how they intimidate the US and affiliated national security in its first proceeding of the 117th Congress.

Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Tenn.), who serves as the chairman in charge of the subcommittee, complained that most of the discussions on this subject take place behind closed doors, preventing an informed discussion on US national security preferences and spending. The progress made by China and Russia in their space as well as nuclear weapons programs, as well as how the US should react to these innovations, are usually discussed behind closed doors, according to Cooper. “We should bring these issues to the attention of the public so that they can participate in the debate.”

Cooper cited the Global Positioning System as an instance – of a threatened space asset. The GPS was developed by the United States Air Force and provided a free service to the rest of the world. “Why would our prospective adversaries, as well as even some of our allies, invest billions of dollars in duplicating GPS and creating technologies to demolish our GPS satellites?” Cooper remarked. “That is not something that friendly neighbors do.”

Rep. Michael Turner (R-Ohio), who is a high-ranking leader of the subcommittee, noted tactical nuclear missiles, hypersonic missiles, and anti-satellite weapons as capacities that Russia and China are developing and should worry the US.

“Failure to ensure a reliable nuclear deterrent, as well as space and counter space effectiveness, will have a strong and immeasurable effect on our global defense as well as that of our partners,” Turner stated. China and Russia are “narrowing the gap” in space capacities, according to Todd Harrison, who is an expert in the defense and space strategist at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. He stated, “We have weaknesses that we are not trying to address.”

CSIS is anticipated to update its yearly report on international counter space capabilities this week. The study, titled “Defense Against the Dark Arts in Space,” will advise that the US improve its capacity to track space, which is identified as space domain awareness, according to Harrison. He also believes the US should create a more diverse as well as resilient space architecture, including multiple orbiting satellites and technologies to protect satellites from jammers as well as kinetic attacks.

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