20:25 GMT +3 hours26 August 2016
Live
Surveillance Satellite

Panic Reaches New Heights: 'Russia, China Planning Space Attacks on US'

© Flickr/ US Air Force
US
Get short URL
7115371818

In a new campaign of budget-bolstering and fear-mongering, the Pentagon has warned of impending attacks on US satellites by Russia and China.

"Adversaries are developing kinetic, directed-energy, and cyber tools to deny, degrade and destroy our space capabilities," Air Force Gen. John Hyten, head of the Air Force Space Command, told the US House Armed Service strategic forces subcommittee on Tuesday.

"They understand our reliance on space, and they understand the competitive advantage we derive from space. The need for vigilance has never been greater," he asserted.

Hyten has campaigned for a new Air Force project group, whose sole purpose would be to protect US space assets against foreign "aggression." On Tuesday, he warned that US Global Positioning System satellites are vulnerable to attack.

Lt. Gen. David Buck, commander of Joint Functional Component for Space, testified alongside Hyten.

"Simply stated, there isn’t a single aspect of our space architecture, to include the ground architecture, that isn’t at risk," Buck declared. "Russia views US dependency on space as an exploitable vulnerability and they are taking deliberate actions to strengthen their counter-space capabilities."

Buck also sounded alarms over China’s creation of its Strategic Support Forces, a space warfare and cyber warfare unit.

"China is developing, and has demonstrated, a wide range of counter-space technologies to include direct-ascent, kinetic-kill vehicles, co-orbital technologies that can disable or destroy a satellite, terrestrially-based communications jammers, and lasers that can blind or disable satellites," he said.

"Moreover, they continue to modernize their space programs to support near-real-time tracking of objects, command and control of deployed forces, and long-range precision strikes capabilities."

But alongside the chicken-little rhetoric that the sky is falling, the Pentagon officials could offer no proof, and only vague solutions to the dire threat they proclaim.

"A space offset strategy must employ a diverse set of resilience measures that complicate the technical, political, and force structure calculus of our adversaries, by arraying a complex set of response, with few overlapping vulnerabilities and a combination of known and ambiguous elements," Douglas Loverro, deputy assistant defense secretary for space policy, told Congress.

Much of this wild-eyed science-fiction hype appears to be driven by a fear of losing the current military space budget, in a period of financial drawdowns for the Pentagon. Last month, Hyten told Defense One that US Space Command keeps a close eye on Russian satellite positions, claiming that, "We watch where it goes all the time."

Similarly, the Air Force expressed anguish over China’s decision to shoot down one of its own weather satellites in 2007. While the move was a way to effectively dismantle a decaying satellite, Washington viewed the incident as a demonstration of Beijing’s offensive capabilities.

The US condemned North Korea’s recent satellite launch, leading the charge to impose additional UN sanctions on Pyongyang.

As the Pentagon relentlessly invents external "threats" at which to point fingers, Hyten admitted in December 2015 that the US may be unintentionally jamming its own satellites.

2015 saw 261 cases in which US satellite communications were jammed. When asked by Breaking Defense how many of those were conducted by China or Russia, Hyten, at the time, said, "I really don’t know. My guess is zero."

Related:
US Navy Plans New Secure Satellite Communications Launch in May
New US Spy Satellite Lifts Off as Obama Criticizes N. Korean Launch
North Korea Launches Satellite: Republicans Call For War on DPRK
Tags:
russian aggression, space capabilities, satellite defense, Cyberwarfare, cyberattacks, Air Force Space Command, US Air Force, Pentagon, Douglas Loverro, David Buck, John Hyten, Russia, China, United States
Community standardsDiscussion
Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik
  • Сomment
  • michaelin reply toteddy j(Show commentHide comment)
    teddy j, I think that it has been marginally helped by the imported americans with dual nationality. They enter the cultures and apply american ways of looking at and interacting with the world.
  • michaelin reply toAnn(Show commentHide comment)
    Ann , now we have a change of name??? :)
  • teddy jin reply toseanrkearney(Show commentHide comment)
    seanrkearney, i hope you won't mind -- but i have to ask your permission to quote your summary -- A PERFECT SUMMARY OF THE USA ''ROLE" in the world.
  • supportin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
    michael, you have to admit what Jack Nicholson did with his hands portraying the President explaining to the USA that he had the situation under control when it was clear he did not was one of the truly great performances of his career. That movie was Tim Burton's big break and he made the best of it. Really stoopid movies like Mars Attacks have their place.

    Now watch a Martian attack really happen lol
  • michaelin reply tosupport(Show commentHide comment)
    support, only if I can listen to Richard Burton doing the narration! :)
  • Selectric Typeball
    So much for Obama de-funding NASA. Now all US Space Technology is vulnerable to attack. The Satellite Network is the most important asset. Everyone is addicted to their TV programs. If Russia and China attack American's TV service, then they will have nothing to do, except volunteer for the military, and start flying drone video-game programs, that may be real.
  • Anton KOMAROVin reply toaubreydgarrett(Show commentHide comment)
    aubreydgarrett, hi...may be it was just appropriate....not to see anything
  • Anton KOMAROVin reply toAnn(Show commentHide comment)
    Ann , I think we have to be frank on the subject N.K has the right to have a satellite but everyone knows what they are devloping....here we have a second problem how do you distinguish between the balistic missile program and the space program? How much time is needed for japan to mount a nuclear warhead (or chemical) on one of it's supposed civilian boosters (rockets) they prooved that they are able to recover vehicles from outer space (A probe returning on earth like a icbm warhear needs a shroud .... same tech....). Do I condemn North Korea then? I am not a fan of their social system...how could I? but they have the right to defend themselves ...So I will call a cat a cat...in the case of North Korea a difficult ally to defend in front of historical judges
  • choticastilein reply toteddy j(Show commentHide comment)
    teddy j, for sure -- I believe forensic's available today can easily authenticate when satellite data or any data has been tampered with. After all, its most probably a tiny but HD video to tape satellite photography not so?
  • choticastilein reply toteddy j(Show commentHide comment)
    teddy j, I'll wager that they're Satanists -- guaranteed all rituals and ceremonies and dates, moon times and constellations -- its all very deep throat, to put it mildly -- Will not even ask, if you've read Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code and his follow up Angels and Demons -- well it spell out a lot and much of it authenticated too. Da Vinci was banned in some countries for a long time. People who are complete fanatics regard themselves as infinitely superior -- the rest of us fools, beasts of burden the say according to the P of Z (sure you caught that one).
  • jimbogoofballin reply toptcjm(Show commentHide comment)
    ptcjm, There is no flag there if you believe that you must be from the usa education system. LOL LOL
  • Annin reply toAnton KOMAROV(Show commentHide comment)
    Anton KOMAROV, Sure they are trying to develop a weapon. Considering the western rampage against unarmed countries THAT WE'VE SEEN END IN ABSOLUTE TRAGEDY, WHO WOULDN'T? It's called "self-defense" for a nation that has already been attacked and devastated by the USA. Remember that N/S Korea is one of the original regime change/ partitioned states to fall under US world domination.

    You see, once I realized WHY leaders and countries are demonized, and what it generally leads to - I DON'T BELIEVE ANYTHING THEY SAY NOW!

    I can't justify not believing the BS about Putin or Assad, but then buying it about Kim Jung-Un. To me LIES ARE LIES and liars can NEVER be trusted again. EVERY nation has the right to be armed to protect itself, whether I agree with their way of life or not. This is what international law is supposed to protect. NK has as much right to have a satellite in orbit as does China, the US, Russia and India...regardless of the rhetoric and speculation about "what they're REALLY doing."

    Just my opinion.
  • Annin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
    michael, I just put my name in the blank, I didn't realize it would change how I was displayed in the comments. But it's okay, I suppose I don't need my yahoo pseudonym here anyway.
  • michaelin reply toAnn(Show commentHide comment)
    Ann, true and I think 'Ann' is more reflective of who you show - if that makes sense. :)
  • ivanwa88
    The blowing up by China of one of its weather satellites was THE most brilliant move of which I still laugh about today. The day it happen after a long period of US covert insurgency in China if you remember! and imminent threats to invade North Korea.

    And believe me they were 5 minutes away from launching another carrier based "shock and awe" program STOPPED forthwith.

    That was the intervention of the century! after that China realised it HAD to develop a aircraft carrier killer missile by yesterday.
  • ivanwa88
    The reason US is making such a fuss over North Korean satellite launch is the fear that this now would allow precise targeting.....if it was a GPS military version ... which we don't know!!?

    That relevance is only temporary as China is launching 40 of its own tracking and targeting satellites operating a different and independent system to rest of world.
  • Annin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
    michael, Everyone always thinks that "sixpack" means I drink a lot of alcohol - it doesn't. I got the nickname, because up until I was about 45, I had very good abs.
  • michaelin reply toAnn(Show commentHide comment)
    Ann, funny, that's what I thought initially, but I didn't know if you were a gym goer or what. I thought too that one of the things about being in the armed forces is to provide options for gym work and developing a good discipline for a fitness regime either in or out of the service. Thanks :)
  • Anton KOMAROVin reply toAnn(Show commentHide comment)
    Ann, you are absolutely right. I still do not like their system but it is not for me to decide...
  • tobi.gelando
    The USA can't even make a proper "Rocket Motor" there get from Russia.
    But in the same time there think that there can make a proper Satellite... ha ha
Show new comments (0)