============================================================================ Delivered-To: moderator for •••@••.••• From: •••@••.••• Date: Sat, 27 Jan 2001 23:20:35 -0500 (EST) Subject: Preparing for War in Space? http://www.herald.com/thispage.htm?content/today/opinion/digdocs/037340.htm Published Friday, January 26, 2001 Miami Herald by Ira Chernus Rumsfeld preparing for war in space? Last century, in times of peace, U.S. military researchers were busy inventing new weapons for the next war. New Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld seems determined to lead us now under the banner of ``While you have peace on Earth, prepare for war in space.´´ As Rumsfeld takes office, we should demand a public debate on his favorite cause: the militarization of space. Otherwise, we may plunge blindly into the era of space warfare that Pentagon-paid scientists already are planning. The military-technology wizards flourish in times of relative tranquillity. From 1871 to 1914, Europeans enjoyed a peace that many thought would never end. Hence their shock when they saw in World War I the horrors of machine guns, tanks, submarines and poison gas. After the war, the shock waves reached the United States. American leaders signed a treaty purporting to outlaw war in 1928; by 1935, thousands of young men had added their names to a formal pledge never to take up arms again. But in the meantime devotees of aerial warfare were designing new armaments: bombers carrying massive bombs, aircraft carriers launching deadly fighter and torpedo planes. Even as newspapers reported in- vestigations of ``the munitions makers´´ of World War I, there was little public notice, let alone discussion, of the new weapons systems. Only sci-fi devotees even imagined the discoveries that were paving the way for the most monstrous bombs of all. When public debate erupted after Hiroshima and Nagasaki, it was too late. In the post-Cold War era of peace, weapons development continues at U.S. nuclear laboratories, which plan to test the next generation of bombs on computers rather than under the ground. But who's paying attention? The real challenge with both nuclear and conventional weapons is figuring out where to use them and ensuring that they hit their intended targets. Military-might advocates have a passionate booster in Rumsfeld. The Air Force's Space Command boasts that it can develop computerized satellites that will tell U.S. commanders everything that is happening, at every moment, everywhere in the world. It also promises that these satellites will guide U.S. weapons precisely to the target every time. It has spent billions of dollars preparing for the militarization of space. But it wants much more.Military-might advocates have a passionate booster in the defense secretary. We already have more destructive power than any one nation, or even the world as a whole, could possibly use. We have that power because of another revolution in military technology that went largely unnoticed. During the detente of the late 1960s and 1970s, the weapons designers went as far as they could with big, unwieldy, city-busting bombs. So they invented a new generation of ``smaller´´ strategic weapons, precision-guided by computers, mounted eight or 10 at a time on a single warhead. Apart from a brief flap over defensive-missile systems, there was scarcely any public interest. The Space Command plans to use its satellite-and-computer network not only for guiding these weapons but to destroy enemy satellites. They hope to get a bigger piece of the budgetary pie. George W. Bush's selection of Rumsfeld indicates that the new administration wants to cut the pie very much to the Space Command's liking. The only part of the plan getting scrutiny, now as in the 1960s, is missile defense. Space-war boosters count on National Missile Defense to ensure full-spectrum dominance, to spin off the technology that space wars will require and to get us to pay for it all. Rumsfeld's passions for missile defense and for space weapons are two sides of the same coin. Once the Pentagon tosses that coin, there will be no way to stop an arms race in space, the costs of which, in money and eventually in human lives, is incalculable. Now is the time for a public debate on this subject. Peacetime is the time to pay attention to the new war technology. After the next war, it may be too late. -- Ira Chernus is a religious-studies professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder and a History News Service writer (•••@••.•••). Copyright 2001 Miami Herald =============== + ================= Please sign the "STOP STAR WARS" petition hosted on the web by PetitionOnline.com: http://www.PetitionOnline.com/Jules/ ================ + ================ Support Antiwar.com http://Antiwar.com; and 'Spirit FM' Catholic Christian radio (90.5-FM, Tampa, Fla. USA) http://www.spiritfm905.com; and Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space http://www.space4peace.org Many thanks from Kevin; age 46; online Christian peace activist and stay-home father-of-4, in Florida (Tampa Bay area). ============================================================================ Delivered-To: •••@••.••• From: "Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space" <•••@••.•••> To: <•••@••.•••> Subject: MESSAGE FROM SOUTH KOREA Date: Sun, 28 Jan 2001 06:23:19 -0500 MIME-Version: 1.0 X-Priority: 3 (Normal) Importance: Normal Hello. I am Cheong Wooksik, the representative of Civil Network for a Peaceful Korea(www.peacekorea.org) that is peace movement NGO in South Korea. Inauguration of President Bush and alliance between China and North Korea written by Cheong Wooksik translated by You Sanghee(Volunteer of CNPK) North Korea's reclusive leader Kim Jong-il's surprise visit to China, in the very first month of 2001, has provoked keen interest of the international community. The fact that the visit took place only days before the inauguration of President Bush allows for a possibility of the two leaders, Mr. Kim and his old ally Chinese Premier Jiang Zemin, looking into a comprehensive structure of dynamics on the Korean peninsula as well as in the Northeast Asian region. On the surface, Mr. Kim's visit to China strongly hints at his intentions toward China-style opening and reform. In fact, North Korea is currently faced with almost no choice at all, to revive its 20-year recession economy, than to open up and introduce reforms through improving ties with the outside world. In addition, the communist regime finds enough merits in the new Chinese system, where socialist political regime coexists with capitalist economy, resulting in a huge economic success. However, there is something more to the visit than what it seems. The two leaders are expected to devise a joint strategy toward the US, which still regards China as its "strategic rival" and North Korea as "a rogue state". At the present point, it is rather difficult to imagine what kind of strategy they will be making. For North Korea, normalizing relations with the South, the US, and Japan is essential for its economic reforms and opening. Indeed, the US has both legal and institutional keys to lifting off of sanctions against the "rogue state", as well as to advancing into the international market. As for Japan, it is the only country that can provide financial assistance, which North Korea desperately needs for economic revival - whether it be in the form of compensation for the colonial brutality, or of economic development fund. North Korea is now facing a serious dilemma between economic needs and security reality. The Bush administration appears to be moving towards a hardline stance against Pyongyang, and there is also a sign of growing militarism in Japan. These two countries, it seems, will forge a stronger military alliance in the future. What is certain for North Korea is that it will not give up on the mid-range missile development programme, the most controversial issue so far with the US and Japan, unless security threats from the US and Japan are completely eased. In fact, Theater Missile Defense (TMD) and National Missile Defense (NMD), which symbolize strong military ambitions of the US and Japan, are enough to make North Korea feel threatened. Worse yet, the Bush administration is expected to urge Pyongyang to give up its development and export of missiles without adequate compensation, exposing North Korea to severe security threats, regardless of its giving up of the missile programs. As William Perry, former US Defense Secretary and writer of guidelines toward North Korea under the Clinton administration, admitted, North Korea's missiles are more of a means to deter the US and Japan, rather than to provoke war. In other words, for North Korea, giving up on missile development without full guarantee of security would be losing all means of war deterrence. However, it does not mean that boosting missile development would save North Korea from its current dilemma. If TMD, scheduled to be located starting 2003, deactivates North Korea's missiles, the US would be able to attack the communist regime under the cause of stopping the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. As for Japan, it may join hands with the US in attacking North Korea if Pyongyang resumes development of missiles or nuclear weapons. In retrospect, a considerable part of normalization of relations between the US and North Korea should have taken place after the signing of the Agreed Framework in 1994. However, the US has not kept its part of the bargain, and this is basically why North Korea finds it difficult to feel secure about the "positive prospect", where it stops missile development in return for full political security and normalized relations with the US and Japan. North Korea is not alone in its dilemma - China is in similar situation, with the inauguration of the Bush administration. For China, NMD may debilitate its nuclear deterrence against the US. If the US proceeds to deploy 100 interjector missiles by 2006 as planned, all of 15 or so nuclear war heads in China will be debilitated, each of which by 3-4 interjector missiles. In this regard, China can never downplay the impact of TMD. With Japan's militarism growing in the 90s, and with its own airforce and marine capability weakness compared with Japan's military power, deployment of TMD seriously threatens the strategic advantage that China has maintained so far. Worse yet, if Taiwan is included in the US East-Asian missile defense network, further in the US security umbrella, China's dream of unification with Taiwan may forever be shattered. Taking into account the current dilemma both North Korea and China are in, main purpose of the meeting between Mr. Kim and Premier Jiang would be to seek a joint strategy against the US hegemony in the region. However, since the US is both a potential threat and source of assistance for the two countries, it is all the more difficult to predict how they would respond to the superpower in the future. What is rather certain here is that the two leaders must have shared concerns over, and seek joint strategy against NMD and TMD, which are sure to be deployed under the new Bush administration. In addition, they could have exchanged ideas on solutions to Pyongyang's mid and long-range missile development, which is an alleged cause, as well as a target of the proposed NMD. What is interesting is that the two leaders met again on January 20, two day after the senate confirmation hearing of Colin Powell, appointed as Secretary of State. In the hearing, Powell disclosed his East Asian strategy, in which he emphasized an overall review of the existing North Korean policy, strengthened alliance among the US, South Korea, and Japan, forward stationed military forces, and deployment of missile defence. East Asian policy of the Bush administration indeed sounds like a story right off of the Cold War era. Then how will Mr. Kim and Premier Jiang respond to this new circumstances? Will they partly restore a socialist system? Or will they pursue a "peace" strategy so as to "warm up" the "cold" stance of the Bush administration? From a short-term perspective, such dilemma surrounding China and North Korea will be firstly resolved by how the US and North Korea settle the so-called "Star Wars project" (deployment of NMD/TMD) and missile development programs. President George W. Bush, following the steps of Reagan, Bush, and Clinton, has repeatedly expressed his commitment to the "Star Wars project". Such strong intentions of the new president fans global concerns that the international community will be mired in yet another Cold War, and that the hard-won thawing mood on the Korean peninsula will be disrupted. The North Korean regime is likely to interpret the deployment of NMD as lack of willingness, on the US part, to resolve nuclear and missile issues through dialogue. The US, for its part, is likely to focus more on strengthening its deterrence and attack capability, through NMD and TMD, than on negotiations with Pyongyang. Republicans believe that 1994 Geneva Accord and 1999 Berlin Agreement, regarded as the most outstanding accomplishments of former President Clinton, had been nothing more than compensation for vice. In this regard, the Bush administration will be rather reluctant to provide compensation to North Korea in return for giving up the missile development programs. This will naturally lead to another long deadlock over Pyongyang's nuclear and missile issues, raising a possibility of yet another war on the peninsula. For China, it will have less reasons to dissuade North Korea from developing missiles if the US continues to develop and deploy NMD and TMD. It would then be obvious to China that the US is in fact targeting China on the pretext of deterring North Korea. Russia, for its part, would be in no different position than China. Many experts predict that the US would not give up its "Star Wars project" even if Pyongyang renounces its missile programs. They believe the ultimate reason behind the development of NMD/TMD is not deterring North Korea, but China. However, if North Korea gives up its mid/long range missile ambitions, the US would have less convincing rationales for developing NMD/TMD, because the superpower has always argued that its project is aimed at deterring the rogue states, including North Korea. In this case, the US would have to find itself another convincing rationale for NMD development - which will not be so easy. "Threats from Iran or Iraq" is not convincing enough, since their missile capability does not even equal North Korea. However, the US cannot directly mention China or Russia, because it would be admitting its past deceptions, therefore imposing on itself a huge political burden. The US media may not leave the administration in peace in those circumstances. In this regard, it is convincing enough to argue that the Bush administration would not resolve the North Korean missile issues through negotiations - indeed, for the US, resolving the North Korean issue would mean losing a good rationale for NMD/TMD development. Due to deep-rooted mistrust and conflicting strategical interests, it would be difficult for the US, China, and North Korea to resolve the issues by themselves. In current circumstances, a good idea would be a mediation of Sout Korean President Kim Dae-jung. President Kim Dae-jung, though not from all, has earned a considerable support from many leaders across the world. He probably is the least hostile person at present point. In addition, as a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, President Kim obtained the least authority needed to mediate between North Korea and the US, whose conflict will indeed determine the much delicate security circumstances surrounding the Korean peninsula. In this regard, it is important to note that President Kim said, in an interview with <International Herald Tribune> on January 6, that he intended to ask the North to stop the production of long range missiles. He declined to comment directly on the development of NMD and TMD. President Kim's remark is important, because he seems to have recognized the possibility of the hard-won security on the Korean peninsula being wrecked by the political instability caused by NMD and TMD. South Korean President also seems willing to mediate North Korea and the US in resolving the hottest issue- Pyongyang's missile development. Although exact date is not set, leaders of the countries involved will be making state visits to and fro one another during the next 3 months: North Korean leader Kim Jong-il's visit to Seoul and Russia, President Kim Dae-jung's visit to Washington, Russia President Putin's visit to Seoul, etc. The series of state visits, main agenda of which will be security on the Korean peninsula and NMD/TMD development, will make a favorable environment for President Kim to act as a mediator between the US and North Korea. In this regard, North Korean National Defense Commissioner Kim Jong-il's visit to Seoul would be an important milestone in determining stability on the Korean peninsula. Whether the two Korean leaders will decide to coordinate their policies in the face of new security threats remains to be seen.