Posted by Suzanne Nossel
So Derek is writing about a bi-partisan Congressional group's call to add 100,000 troops to the U.S. army and Lorelei is arguing that we need to reallocate funds to beef up up other agencies to help shoulder pressing challenges now shouldered by the military. Meanwhile the Pentagon is spending untold billions - and proposing to appropriate far more - on offensive and defensive weapons in space. The NY Times reports:
The Air Force believes "we must establish and maintain space superiority," Gen. Lance Lord, who leads the Air Force Space Command, told Congress recently. "Simply put, it's the American way of fighting." Air Force doctrine defines space superiority as "freedom to attack as well as freedom from attack" in space.
Never mind that no one has ever attacked us from space, nor has or is building the means to do so. Never mind that the $100 billion already spent on a "Star Wars" missile shield has failed to yield a functioning technology. Never mind that, based on my confessedly limited knowledge of the Judeo-Christian tradition, space was supposed to be god's realm, not man's.
Some of the proposed programs to be developed include:
Another Air Force space program, nicknamed Rods From God, aims to hurl cylinders of tungsten, titanium or uranium from the edge of space to destroy targets on the ground, striking at speeds of about 7,200 miles an hour with the force of a small nuclear weapon.
A third program would bounce laser beams off mirrors hung from space satellites or huge high-altitude blimps, redirecting the lethal rays down to targets around the world. A fourth seeks to turn radio waves into weapons whose powers could range "from tap on the shoulder to toast," in the words of an Air Force plan.
Speaking of Star Wars, can it really be coincidence that this is being pushed to coincide with the final Star Wars Revenge of the Sith release? Having learned what to expect from Karl Rove, I doubt it.