Lift-Off for Space Weapons? Implications of the Department of Defense's 2004 Budget Request for Space Weaponization

Author data: 
Jeffrey Lewis
Publication Date: 
July 2003

CISSM Working Paper

Re-evaluating Space Security
The Reconsidering the Rules for Space Project
Document Type: 
Working Papers

This document is the second of two papers that consider current plans by the United States to expand military activities in outer space. The first paper addressed the international reaction to such deployments, in particular the objections by the Chinese Mission to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva. This paper describes and documents the allocation of funds in the FY04 budget request to three areas:

1. Force projection and space control ("Enhancing Space Operations"),
2. Space-based elements of the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) System, and
3. Space-based command, control, and intelligence ("Integrated Focused Surveillance").

The Command of United Strategic Command (STRATCOM), James O. Ellis, testified before Congress that the new space-based force application capabilities alluded to in the Strategic Master Plan will allow U.S. policy-makers to employ strategic forces in a much wider array of contingencies: Space capabilities will dramatically enhance US Strategic Command's newly assigned global strike mission, which extends our long-standing and globally focused deterrent capabilities to the broader spectrum of conflict. The incorporation of advanced conventional, nonkinetic, and special operations capabilities into a full-spectrum contingency arsenal will enable the command to deliberately and adaptively plan for and deliver rapid, limited-duration, extended-range combat power anywhere in the world

Jeffrey Lewis is a Graduate Research Fellow at the Center for International Security Studies at Maryland.