By Dave B.
Recently, I’ve been hearing some criticism of comments by President Trump that Space is a warfighting domain. I understand the concern that some people may have about the prospect of battles in Space, but in this case, President Trump is simply acknowledging a reality that’s based on the increasing capabilities of nations that are unfriendly to the United States, namely China and Russia.
Let me ask you a few questions: If the United States didn’t have a Navy, do you think that would mean that the ocean would cease being a warfighting domain? That navies all over the world would disarm and peace would reign on the high seas? What about the Air Force? Do you think that if we got rid of that, the world would enter an unprecedented golden age? If you answer is yes to any of those questions, you’re dangerously delusional and should consider taking a closer look at human history.
Acknowledging that America’s adversaries have developed technologies to destroy our assets in Space is not warmongering. It’s a statement of fact and the first step to making sure that we are prepared to defend those assets (you like GPS and weather forecasts, right? Kinda need satellites for those). President Obama’s administration also prepared to fight defensive, offensive, and preemptive battles in Space. Those plans just didn’t receive much media attention.
Although this may seem like a minor issue to many, it’s important for two reasons. Most importantly, because defense concerns generally don’t just disappear when we wish really, really hard that they will. Preparation is the key to survival and success in all aspects of life.
Second, nobody is right all the time and nobody is wrong all the time. This includes President Trump. Of course you should criticize him when he’s factually wrong or when you disagree with him. But criticizing him on one of the occasions when he’s actually stating something that is verifiably true diminishes the impact of your critiques of him in other areas.