Defense

March 14, 2014

Officials update Congress on military space policy, challenges

SFC Tyrone C. Marshall Jr.
American Forces Press Service

If potential adversaries are to challenge the United States, they must do so in the space domain, the Defense Departments top space policy official told Congress March 12.

Douglas L. Loverro, the deputy assistant secretary of defense for space policy, joined by Gen. William L. Shelton, the commander of Air Force Space Command, testified before the Senate Armed Services Committees strategic forces subcommittee on the departments space program posture.

Over the last 15 years, other nations have watched us closely, Loverro said. They have recognized that if they are to challenge the United States, they must challenge us in space. And they are endeavoring to do so. The United States has successfully addressed such challenges before in air, sea and land domains, and now we must, likewise, respond in space.

This must be done against the backdrop of decreasing budgets that challenges both the ability and speed with which the United States can act, he said, adding that this in no way diminishes the importance of successfully sustaining the crucial advantages that space provides.

Our strategic approach for these issues remains consistent with what we outlined in the 2011 National Security Space Strategy and reaffirmed in DOD space policy in 2012, Loverro said.

While Loverro acknowledged he is concerned about the contested nature of space, he said it remains important to national defense.

Space remains, and will continue to remain, vital to our national security, he said. It underpins DOD capabilities worldwide at every level of engagement, from humanitarian assistance to the highest levels of combat. It enables U.S. operations to be executed with precision on a global basis with reduced resources, fewer deployed troops, fewer casualties and decreased collateral damage.
Space empowers U.S. forces and allies to win faster and to bring more warfighters home safety, he said.

Its a key to U.S. power projection, Loverro said, providing a strong deterrent to our potential adversaries and a source of confidence to our allies.

But the evolving strategic environment increasingly challenges U.S. space advantages, he said, because space no longer is the sole province of world powers — it is a frontier that is now open to all.

Space has become more competitive, congested and contested, Loverro said, referring to that condition as the so-called three Cs. As an American, he said, he welcomes the competitive aspect of todays space environment.

Im highly confident that, with the right policies, the U.S. is well positioned to remain ahead in that environment, Loverro said.

The changes Congress authorized two years ago on export control reform, Loverro said, coupled with changes NASA and DOD have embraced on commercial launch, are just two of the many reasons he isnt concerned with the competitive nature of space.

On the second ëC, congestion, I am not quite so welcoming, he said. But I am optimistic. Congestion and debris in space is a real issue, and it threatens to put our use of space at risk.

Loverro praised efforts such as the Air Forces Space Fence program that are aimed at reducing this risk, as well as the work DOD, the State Department and the United Nations are doing internationally to set rules of the road for outer space. The space situational awareness sharing that U.S. Strategic Command is leading, he said, also is aimed at bringing a similar focus on this issue to the community of space-faring nations.

Shelton voiced similar concerns regarding the contested margin of U.S. advantage in space.

Our nations advantage in space is no longer a given, he said. The ever-evolving space environment is increasingly contested, as potential adversary capabilities grow in both number and sophistication.

The general said providing budget stability and flexibility in the dynamic, strategic space environment is necessary to maintain and bolster the viability of the nations space capabilities.

Given this new normal for space, I believe that we are at a strategic crossroads, he said. It is a reality that requires us to address how we protect our space systems, challenge traditional acquisitions practices and consider alternative architectures that are more resilient and more affordable.

Shelton thanked the committee for supporting the military space policy program. I look forward to working with the Congress to keep you abreast of our efforts to provide resilient, capable and affordable space capabilities for the joint force and for the nation, he said.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines August 18, 2014

News: U.S. mission in Iraq could expand, Pentagon official says - The mission for U.S. troops in Iraq to help Kurdish and Iraqi security forces in their fight against Islamic militants remains limited for now, but may expand after Iraqi leaders form a new government, a Pentagon spokesman said Aug. 19.   Business: Fuel deals top...
 
 

News Briefs August 20, 2014

Trials complete on fourth Coast Guard cutter Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, Miss., has completed acceptance sea trials for the company’s fourth U.S. Coast Guard national security cutter, Hamilton. Jim French, Ingalls’ NSC program manager, tells The Mississippi Press) the Hamilton is scheduled to be delivered next month and commissioned on Dec. 6 in Charleston, South...
 
 
Army photograph by Sgt. Thomas Duval

Air Force, Army Aviation come together to complete vital mission in Egypt

Army photograph by Sgt. Thomas Duval Soldiers and airmen load a UH-60 Black Hawk into an Air Force C17 Globemaster III Aug. 19, 2104, at an old Israeli airstrip in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt. The airstrip is now used by the M...
 

 
Air Force photograph by TSgt. Terri Praden

Joint effort validates ability to move Stryker vehicles via air

Air Force photograph by TSgt. Terri Praden An Army Stryker combat vehicle is guided into a C-17 Globemaster III during a 25th Infantry Division training exercise Aug. 13, 2014, at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii. The Str...
 
 
NASA image

Ozone-depleting compound persists, NASA research shows

NASA image Satellites observed the largest ozone hole over Antarctica in 2006. Purple and blue represent areas of low ozone concentrations in the atmosphere; yellow and red are areas of higher concentrations. NASA research show...
 
 

F-16V completes major capability milestone

The newest configuration of the F-16 Fighting Falcon, the F-16V, has reached a major capability milestone with the integration of a new Active Electronically Scanned Array radar. Completing this milestone on schedule demonstrates our ability to meet program commitments, said Roderick McLean, vice president and general manager of the F-16/F-22 Integrated Fighter Group at Lockheed...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>