The Pentagon has made remarkable strides in militarisation of space this year, but its techno-schemes are built on the same sandy foundations as the rest of its defence policy, laments Eric Walberg In April, Air Force Space Command activated a new unit -- the 24th Air Force at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas -- to keep pace with “the rapid changes in information technology and allow space and cyberspace capabilities to be more accessible to military ground commanders”, according to the Space Command’s top military officer General Robert Kehler. Kehler called the activation “the beginning of what will be a deliberate and focused effort to develop and evolve cyberspace forces and capabilities.”
In August, the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency (MDA) commenced its 12th annual Space and Missile Defense Conference in Huntsville, Alabama, at the shiny new Von Braun Centre,
named after the father of Nazi Germany’s missile project and one of the creators of the US ICBM programme, who along with several German colleagues was sent to Huntsville in 1950 (Operation Paperclip) to work on the first live nuclear ballistic missile tests conducted by the Pentagon.
Von Braun -- sorry, I mean Kehler -- told the Space and Missile Defense Conference in 2007 that global deterrence is necessary to encourage restraint, deny benefits and impose costs to those nations and non-nation states that threaten the Reich -- sorry, I mean the US and its allies.
Canadian Eric Walberg is known worldwide as a journalist specializing in the Middle East, Central Asia and Russia. A graduate of University of Toronto and Cambridge in economics, he has been writing on East-West relations since the 1980s.
He has lived in both the Soviet Union and Russia, and then Uzbekistan, as a UN adviser, writer, translator and lecturer. Presently a writer for the foremost Cairo newspaper, Al Ahram, he is also a regular contributor to Counterpunch, Dissident Voice, Global Research, Al-Jazeerah and Turkish Weekly, and is a commentator on Voice of the Cape radio.