The next world war could be in outer space as countries scramble to reach space supremacy. New reports have sprung up with China and the United States supposedly gunning to be better than the other with possible threats of attack and war in outer space. Who will win?
China’s satellite launch previously blew up in space into thousand of debris but that did not stop the country from launching another one in 2013. This time, the launch caught Pentagon’s attention already as such has opened possibilities for modern warfare: it is not just on Earth that China could wage war against the United States.
According to The Washington Post, China’s rocket was able to reach a farther distant orbit – quite close to where the United States deploys its most sensitive national security satellites. The flyby was a warning to the United States.
It also forced the Defense Department and intelligence agencies to start investing more (billions of dollars) to protect “most valuable real estate in space,” as referred to by Air Force Gen. John Hyten.
Furthermore, techno-thriller Ghost Fleet – authored by Peter Singer and August Cole – talked about the cataclysmic world war that starts with a sneaky attack from the China to US assets in space. Initially, China’s Cyber Command Headquarters soldiers in Shanghai try to hack into the network of GPS satellites under Pentagon with attempts on scrambling their signals. Additionally, Chinese astronauts use a laser gun to target three dozen U.S. satellites used heavily by the military on its surveillance and communication. This eventually got the edge of the United States crippled.
As much as the whole bunch of it sounds like science fiction, it is not far from happening and China’s space efforts and possible other activities have got Pentagon rattled seriously.
“The U.S., China, Russia are all working on not just using space but also taking it away from the other side,” Newsweek quoted Singer who was also a military strategist at the New America Foundation, a Washington, D.C., think tank.
There is no saying how much damage a war in space could cause but it will have staggering implications. Given the conflict over South China Sea, Eastern Europe movements, the territorial claims and ongoing spat and tensions among Russia, US and China – whoever gains supremacy in the sky may just be able to change the tides.
In reference, Newsweek cited a scenario wherein the dispute over South China Sea is settled up through war in the outer space. If this scenario happens, the civilians on Earth are still not safe according to the report. If space war erupts, cellphone satellites, banks and GPS on Earth will possibly be obliterated, affecting life back on the planet.