Today’s Issue: Space Defense
Monday through Friday I deal with different subjects in this blog. I also post my blog to my Facebook page at RFrederickRiddlesWorld. Monday’s I try to focus on issues. This week I am taking a look at Space Defense.
According to this past Saturday’s news the Pentagon and the White House have two different ideas about having a Space Defense. The Pentagon has acknowledged that a need to revamp our country’s approach to defending U.S. economic and security interests in space and, according to the paper, is moving in that direction.
The likely plan favored by the Pentagon calls for creating a U.S. Space Command which would consolidate space warfighting forces and making other organizational changes. The Trump plan is to establish a separate service, perhaps called Space Corps. The Pentagon plan apparently has the support of key Republican leaders in Congress.
As is becoming normal, Trump is far ahead of his fellow Republicans.
The Pentagon plan draws elements from various services and foresees the Space Corps attached to the Air Force as a Space Command. It is a limited, overly cautious view that seems likely to carry the day. Trump’s idea of a new branch, a Space Force, is far more visionary and, ultimately, necessary.
The fact is that we live in a time when space is the new frontier and, barring the Second Coming of our Lord, needs to be dominated by the United States rather than China, Russia, or some other country. The nation that controls space is the nation that will dominate the world as we know it.
But historically our government moves at a snail’s pace. It almost always thinks incremental instead of aggressive. Our government workers tend to be provincial even methodical, unless it affects them personally. Then they react and strive to do something which breeds mistakes.
Being this is an election year, I don’t see our politicians being very brave or farseeing. So, I think that the consolidation will take place but eventually, perhaps next year, they’ll start looking at a more responsible solution.
What would that solution be?
First, take a look at what is happening in space. There are numerous countries who are interested in space. But at the moment there are only a few who can fly into space. On the domestic front right here in America we have a growing number of companies interested in space travel. The two that I think are at the top are Virgin Galactic and SpaceX. In fact, SpaceX is already servicing the International Space Station (ISS).
So, at a minimum, we need a Space Command to protect existing space investments. However, a composite of elements from the Air Force, Navy, and Army is not a long term answer to our needs. A Space Command would be a short sighted response if that is where they stop. Instead it should be the first step to a Space Force.
I believe it should be a full blown service that would be able to explore and defend an ever growing space presence. We must remember that aggressor nations also have an interest in space and will have no hesitancy about mounting their very best forces into space.
In the past we waited until we were attacked and then developed a state of art response in very short order. In the Civil War the north barely beat the Confederacy in the use of ironclad ships (forerunners of our modern warships). War tends to motivate people to invent, research, and develop in a very rapid timeframe to overcome their deficiency and win the war. But we no longer have the luxury of catching up. If an enemy sees us as having a weak space defense and attacks us, we may not have the time to recover.
I think a responsible response would be to:
- Start with the Space Command as only a stopgap.
- Then move to create a separate Space Force that would be forward looking and have the power to
- build a Space Fleet that could protect all our interests whether here on Earth or on Mars or somewhere else in space.
In other words I tend to favor a compromise that begins with the Space Command to give us basic protection now and move forward with a plan to establish a real and separate Space Service or Space Force.
What do you think?
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R Frederick Riddle is the author of several books and is best known for Christian Historical Fiction. For more information on him or his books visit his Amazon Authors Page. He is also co-founder and Vice President of T&R Independent Books where his books are featured. To reply to any blog you have the option of commenting on a blog and/or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also be interested in his Facebook page at RFrederickRiddlesWorld.