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A Northrop-Grummond built DSP satellite. These current satellites only detect ballistic missile launches, rather than shoot them down.
New $5M study is first allocated since work was halted 15 years ago.

Congress recently approved a $5 million grant to begin study of space-based missile defenses. This marks the first time money has been allocated to the program since work on space-based systems was canceled in the 1990s by President Clinton. Two years ago, Congress rejected a similar proposal.

According to Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ), the threat of missile proliferation has grown rapidly since the 1990s. A total of 120 nations now have ballistic missile technology, he said, and nations like North Korea and Iran are not only developing the technology, but selling it on the open market. Missile defense systems are growing as well; 27 nations now have some form of missile defense.

The most recent annual report from the Pentagon highlighted the growing threat of accidental or intentional launch of ballistic missiles, as well as the vulnerability of U.S. satellites to attack, as evidenced by China's 2007 missile test, which destroyed a satellite in orbit.

A defense official commenting on the proposal told the Washington Times that space-based ABM systems are necessary for global, rapid defense, "It's really the only way to defend the U.S. and its allies from anywhere on the planet". The official said such defenses were last considered during the late 1980s, as part of the Global Protection Against Limited Strike, or GPALS, a multi-prong system which used ground and sea-based interceptors, along with space-based platforms. The plan was cancelled by the Clinton Administration, which focused all work on short-range missiles only.

The U.S. announced last year that its ground-based Star Wars' missile defense system was operational and ready for use, though capable at present of covering only parts of the U.S. Plans to expand the system in Europe are under way.

Despite claims to the contrary, China is also apparently working on similar proposals, says China military affairs specialist Richard Fisher. The program, which China says it halted in the 1960s, has apparently been restarted with such systems as the SC-19 anti-satellite missile. According to Fisher, China is also trying to deploy space-warfare weapons, aircraft carrier groups, and a much larger MIRV'ed version of its nuclear ballistic missile arsenal.

Fisher, author of the new book, "China's Military Modernization: Building for Regional and Global Reach", says that by 2020, China "will be well on their way to assembling all the elements of global power that [the U.S.] has today".

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By JasonMick on 10/17/2008 1:14:21 PM , Rating: 5
Just a thought, but I'd say we use the funds to build a giant laser satellite that can strike anywhere in the world and name it SOL.

RE: Idea
By Fronzbot on 10/17/2008 1:40:12 PM , Rating: 5
Even better:
Train a bunch of kids via video games so one of them can rise to the top and then command a fleet to defeat the Buggers!

RE: Idea
By Myrandex on 10/17/2008 1:58:21 PM , Rating: 2
Who would run for Hegemon then?


RE: Idea
By Gzus666 on 10/17/2008 2:14:06 PM , Rating: 3
What a fantastic Ender's Game reference. How I loved that book.

RE: Idea
By Manch on 10/17/2008 9:20:18 PM , Rating: 2
Remember "Full Spectrum Warrior"?
Based off of a Army training "Game"

RE: Idea
By kenji4life on 10/17/2008 10:00:22 PM , Rating: 4
The Last Starfighter FTMFW

RE: Idea
By ianweck on 10/19/2008 7:15:40 PM , Rating: 2
The Last Starfighter FTMFW


RE: Idea
By Chillin1248 on 10/18/2008 5:57:47 AM , Rating: 2
Actually, this is more true than you realize.

Recently I've had the privilege to operate a Remote Control Weapon System (RCWS):



And I got to tell you, it feels no different than controlling a video game; except with better graphics and higher stakes.


RE: Idea
By maverick85wd on 10/18/2008 6:28:33 AM , Rating: 2
we would still need to work on genetically altering intelligences so he's got a second in charge

RE: Idea
By curryj02 on 10/17/2008 2:02:02 PM , Rating: 3
then make the entire satellite system controlled by 'a golden psp' then give it to kenny...

RE: Idea
By jadeskye on 10/17/2008 2:05:19 PM , Rating: 2
can we name it the hammer of dawn? sounds more badass...

RE: Idea
By therealnickdanger on 10/17/2008 2:51:50 PM , Rating: 2
I don't know what it is about that name, but "Hammer of Dawn" is probably the most badass name for a weapons system that I've ever heard.

RE: Idea
By MatthiasF on 10/17/2008 5:25:43 PM , Rating: 1
I dunno. I've met a few Dawns and I wasn't all too impressed with their hammers.

RE: Idea
By FITCamaro on 10/17/2008 5:38:39 PM , Rating: 2
Got my preorder of GOW2 all set. :)

RE: Idea
By kenji4life on 10/17/2008 10:02:28 PM , Rating: 2
Or the name of a pron about a Lesbian named Dawn with a strap-on, I'll let everyone's imagination take it from here.

RE: Idea
By KaiserCSS on 10/17/2008 2:17:39 PM , Rating: 2
Rather than a realtively expensive super-laser satellite, why not use kinetic orbital bombardment?

It seems like that would cause more damage, and besides, the Navy has been working on that railgun of their's to be deployed on ships. Only dropping, say, a tungsten rod from orbit wouldn't require much energy to send it shooting through the atmosphere. I believe this idea was proposed in the 60's, Project Thor, I think.

RE: Idea
By Master Kenobi on 10/17/2008 4:13:11 PM , Rating: 2
That's right, Thor's Hammer. Bow down and obey!

RE: Idea
By 1078feba on 10/17/2008 11:25:54 PM , Rating: 2

RE: Idea
By danrien on 10/17/2008 2:23:17 PM , Rating: 3
other benefits of this alternate plan include the ability to carve every single president's likeness into any landmass on earth.

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