SHOULD THE UNITED STATES, or any nation for that matter, weaponize space? The answer depends not simply on the capabilities and limitations of proposed space weapons but also on the military objectives. The Rumsfeld commission laid out three objectives in which space weapons might play a role: to defend existing military capabilities in space; to deny adversaries the military benefit of space; and to attack adversaries from or within space.
The last objective is perhaps the most alluring: the prompt and deadly projection of force anywhere on the globe. The psychological impact of such a blow might rival that of such devastating attacks as Hiroshima. But just as the unleashing of nuclear weapons had unforeseen consequences, so, too, would the weaponization of space. What’s more, each of the leading proposed space weapons systems has significant physical limitations that make alternatives more effective and affordable by comparison.
Also, check out Noam Chomsky’s talk at MIT about this subject.