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Space Weapons and Arms Control

  • Bruno Bertotti
  • Paolo Farinella
Part of the Studies in Disarmament and Conflicts book series (SDC)

Abstract

It is a proof of the irrational character of the military decisions of the Soviet Union and the United States that both countries have started large programmes for the development of weapons systems against satellites (ASAT).1 Even to an outside observer the essential role of military surveillance from space in maintaining the stability of the world strategic balance is obvious;2 and in particular the United States relies more on these systems than the Soviet Union, because the more open character of the American society makes all arms-information-gathering activities easier. But one may understand the current ASAT programmes only within the absurd logic of requiring at any cost offensive weapons against all elements of the military system of the adversary; this logic really belongs to the old and nowadays untenable concept of war, according to which complete destruction of the enemy and final victory is possible and, indeed, desirable.

Keywords

Outer Space Military Activity Weapon System Verification Problem Outer Space Treaty 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    R. L. Garwin, K. Gottfried and D. L. Hafner, ‘Anti-satellite Weapons’, Scientific American June 1984; Union of Concerned Scientists, Anti-Satellite Weapons: Arms Control or Arms Race? (Cambridge, Mass., 1983); and Journal of the Federation of American Scientists, vol. xxxvi, no. 9 (November 1983) (Special issue on anti-satellite weapons).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Ted Greenwood, ‘Reconnaissance and Arms Control’, Scientific American, February 1973; and G. M. Steinberg, Satellite Reconnaissance: The Role of Informal Bargaining (New York, 1983).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    B. Jasani (ed.), Outer Space: A New Dimension of the Arms Race (London, 1982); R. Garwin, J. Pike and Y. P. Velikov, ‘Space Weapons’, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (May 1984); and G. M. Steinberg, ‘The Militarisation of Space: From Passive Support to Active Weapons’, Futures, October 1982.Google Scholar
  4. 5.
    B. Cheng, ‘Air and Outer Space Laws’, Thesaurus Acroasium, vol. x (1981) 51.Google Scholar
  5. 6.
    M. Hechler and J. C. van der Ha, ‘The Probability of Collisions on the Geostationary Ring’, ESA Journal, vol. iv (1980) 277.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    L. Anselmo, B. Bertotti and P. Farinella, ‘Security in Space’ in J. Rotblat and A. Pascolini (eds), The Arms Race at a Time of Decision: Annals of Pugwash, 1983 (London, 1984) pp. 25–35.Google Scholar
  7. 9.
    J. W. Powell, ‘Photography of Orbiting Satellites’, Spaceflight, vol. xxv (1983) 2.Google Scholar
  8. 10.
    United Nations General Assembly, Study on the Implications of Establishing an International Satellite Monitoring Agency (A/AC 206/14, New York, 1981).Google Scholar
  9. 11.
    J. Redfearn, ‘French Plans for SPOT Satellites’, Nature, vol. cxcviii (1982) 698.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© International School on Disarmament and Research on Conflicts, Tenth Course 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bruno Bertotti
  • Paolo Farinella

There are no affiliations available

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