North Korea Heading Back to Space? March 16, 2012Posted by George C. Marshall Institute in Uncategorized.
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Press reports out today suggest North Korea is planning a satellite launch in April (see http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304459804577284804285216134.html and http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/17/world/asia/north-korea-satellite-launch-missile-test.html?_r=1&hp ).
Coming as it does so closely following the supposed agreement not to further test their missile arsenal in exchange for Western aid, attention is focused there. For those concerned about space security, one might also ask – what are North Korea’s intentions in space? And, especially given the known sharing of information between North Korea and others (i.e., Iran), how would such a test contribute to their space aspirations?
Using space launches to surrogately test ballistic missiles is worrisome enough, but policy makers and others concerned with space have reason to be doubly worried.
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“Nominally, every strategy should describe how one would apply available means to achieve desired ends; implementation requires a proper matching of the two. Unfortunately, the NSSS, does not properly connect those dots. Instead, it lays out five areas of focus, which it hopes will bring about an uncertain end-state.”
Eric Sterner and Josh Hartman, “Implementing the National Security Space Strategy,” Space Quarterly, March 2012, p. 43. http://spacerefpress.com/sq/