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Christopher Stone, Sunday, 5-24-15 May 25, 2015

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Christopher Stone, Sunday, 5-24-15


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Guest:  Christopher (Chris) Stone;  Topics:  Deterrence and the National Security Space Strategy.  Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.


We welcomed Chris Stone back to the program to discuss his recent Space Review article, “Security Through Vulnerability?: The False Deterrence of the National Security Space Strategy.”  You can read his article at www.thespacereview.com/article/2731/1In addition, I am fully aware that this is a controversial topic and discussion so I am more than willing to give equal time to a qualified person who wants to take a different position and articulate a different perspective on deterrence and the NSSS.  If you want to do that, please contact me by email.  During the first segment of our 1 hour 31 minute program, Mr. Stone started out by describing the National Security Space Strategy (NSSS) 2011 document, it’s purpose and the agencies involved with it including Department of Defense (DOD). He also said Congress is presently carrying out oversight on it and may make some changes.  Any such changes would be part of the Defense Authorization Act which if passed by Congress would need approval by the White House.  Chris then explained why he thought the NSSS was more about a policy rather than a strategy, then he addressed his main concern and the purpose of his article, deterrence.  He explained deterrence from the U.S perspective but also the way others see it, including China and throughout Asia as they see deterrence quite differently than we do.  Our guest spoke about this difference at various times during both segments of our discussion.  Chris then discussed the four elements making up deterrence, 1) Deterrence Through Norms, 2) Deterrence Through Alliances, 3) Deterrence Through Resilience and 4) Deterrence Through Response.  He took us through each one of these elements, discussing it in detail and showing why he thought the policy was idealistic and not particularly practical.  Here, he cited various Chinese behaviors in space for examples of why he does not believe the NSSS has the capability of preventing attacks on US space assets.  Chris discussed counter measures and the risk of attacks which could destabilize LEO and possibly other orbits as well.  We discussed the significant US and western nations dependence on space for military as well as economic activity so having effective countermeasures as well as an effective deterrent becomes critical for us moving forward as a nation and for the world.   Michael Listner was our first caller and both Michael & Chris discussed the difference is our deterrent strategy now and with earlier administrations which had a more active deterrence strategy as compared to a more passive passive policy today. Two new terms were introduced to the discussion with Michael’s call, “soft deterrence and a “Space Pearl Harbor.”


In the second segment, I asked Chris to explain what he had meant in the first segment when he talked about mirror imaging.  John from Florida called in with questions about our satellites, possible Chinese attacks on our satellites, our possible response to such attacks, and should we be creating both offensive and defensive strategies.  Chris then talked about the tit for tat strategy that would go after terrestrial targets before space targets.   John asked about using elements of our missile defense shield against satellite attackers, then since caller John used China for his example, I asked both Chris and John how the fact that China, being the largest holder of our national debt, impacted our likelihood to respond were there an attack on our space resources.  Chris elaborated to some degree on the role of congressional oversight and what parts of the NSSS it might be wanting to change and strengthen so that our deterrence strategy is seen as more credible.  Barbara in Seattle asked how likely our current deterrent policy/strategy was to lead us to a shooting or actual space war.  Don’t miss what Chris said in response to this question.  Another listener wanted to know just how a less than credible policy/strategy impacted our adversaries.  Again, don’t miss what Chris said in response to this question.  The last question was from Randy wanting to know how or even if human spaceflight was involved in deterrence. Chris said it was part of it, addressed kinetic space weapons & possible warfare as well as future competition for deep space resources.


Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above. You can reach Chris Stone through me.


The John Batchelor Show Hotel Mars, Wednesday, 4-30-14 May 1, 2014

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The John Batchelor Show Hotel Mars, Wednesday, 4-30-14


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Guests: John Batchelor, Michael Listner, Atty, Dr. David Livingston. Topics: China & space militarization, Russia & ISS, SpaceX DOD litigation, & RD180 engine. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We do not permit the commercial use of any Space Show program or part thereof, nor do we permit Space Show programs to be edited, placed on YouTube, or other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted in news articles, papers, academic & research work but must be cited or referenced in the proper citation format. Contact Dr. Livingston for questions about our copyright and trademark policies which we do enforce.  This program is archived on The Space Show website, podcasting, and blog sites with permission from John Batchelor. Please visit the John Batchelor Show website for more information about this fine program, www.johnbatchelorshow.com. Remember, your Amazon Purchases Can Help Support The Space Show/OGLF (www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm). For those of you listening to archives on live365.com & rating the programs, please email me the reasons for your rating. This will definitely help improve Space Show programming. Thank you.

We welcomed back to Hotel Mars attorney Michael Listner to help us discuss recent statements by the Chinese President indicating that China should pursue the militarization of space. Coupled with this were the new warnings from Russia that our new sanctions against Russia may force Russia to cease working with the U.S. in space. Finally, we talked with Michael about the SpaceX lawsuit against the DOD so that they can break the ULA launch monopoly for Air Force high value satellites. Michael took us through discussion points on each of these issues and from a legal perspective.

Please post any comments/questions you might have on The Space Show blog. You can contact any of us through drspace@thespaceshow.com.

Mark Whittington, Sunday, 2-26-12 February 26, 2012

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Mark Whittington, Sunday, 2-26-12


Guest: Mark Whittington.  Topics: Space Budgets, policy, & politics.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed Mark Whittington back to the show for this 2.5 hour wide ranging discussion on space budgets, the economy, space policy and space politics, plus economic issues facing the nation and others around the world.  We also talked about space perspectives of all those running for president including President Obama and the Republican party challengers.  Mark talked about two article he wrote that were pertinent to our discussion.  These articles are (1) “Moon Base Supporters Struggle to Justify the Project:”

www.examiner.com/space-news-in-houston/moon-base-supporters-struggle-to-justify-the-project; and (2) “A Lunar Exploration Reading List for Mitt Romney:”

www.examiner.com/space-news-in-houston/a-lunar-exploration-reading-list-for-mitt-romney.  In our first segment of 45 minutes, we talked about Texas space politics & redistricting, the Johnson Space Center, & the proposed FY 13 budget.  Mark suggested Congress would rewrite most of the budget but that the Senate would likely not pass a budget so we would end up on CR.  I asked Mark how that would lead to programs being cancelled such as ExoMars if we are still on CR as those programs are embedded in the CR from year to year.  Mark described the process through administrative acts by NASA, Congress, or the President re cancellation, and what the Appropriations Committee would have to do to avoid them. For the most part, more money would need to be found for NASA but that was not likely. Mark talked about what constitutes commercial saying that for something to be really commercial, it has to be able to fail. We compared today’s commercial space programs to gov. programs in terms of Mark’s criteria.  Listeners asked about SLS & Orion, wondering if it & when SLS would be cancelled. The idea of a lunar base was discussed in light of the comments made a few weeks ago in the Florida debate by Newt.  Mark also talked about what he thought might be the space policy of the other candidates though not that much is known other than for Newt, Mitt, and President Obama.  Mark talked about cutting out other budgetary items to make room for a quality space program & he highlighted the high speed rail program.

In our long second segment, Marshall called with a question about the original Mercury astronauts still alive.  We  talked some about human factors, microgravity, and life support issues.  Listeners asked about the Chinese space program & their military buildup.  Here, I referenced the recent congressional testimony of Ronald Burgess, Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency.  The article I referenced is at http://bigthink.com/ideas/42630.  Mark spoke at length about exploration, citing his favorite history story involving Prince Henry The Navigator of Portugal. Jim asked Mark that if he believed commercial space was the best path forward & that SLS was a bad idea, how would he go about getting more support for commercial space even at the expense of SLS.  Mark offered some concrete ideas in response to Jim’s question. John from Billings sent in a few notes & then later called to talk about why there is such an argument about SRBs as compared to liquid rocket motors.  Challenger was mentioned along with Constellation but mainly Mark said that people’s behavior tends to find ways to support their beliefs. Terry, another Texan like Mark, called to ask why Sen. Hutchinson so strongly opposes commercial space.  Mark offered a pretty good answer.  Risk taking, more on SLS, Dream Chaser & the CST 100 were discussed along with the new project, Stratolaunch. As our program drew to a close, I asked Mark to summarize space policy for 2012 which he did do but then more questions came in.  Becky wanted Mark to connect the dots vis a vis our economy & how this might impact NASA & all space development.  This led to quite a little economic discussion with Mark, myself, and Dr. Jurist who called in about that time.  As usual, I went off on my rant about space as an investment, not an expense.  Jack got in the last word asking for three key events impacting space for 2012 other than the election.  Mark said the upcoming Space X flight, what Congress does with the budget, and the planned Chinese mission later this year.  In his concluding remarks, Mark talked about the economic options facing the country & he left us with a few points to consider.  He urged us to participate in Town Hall meetings and ask the candidates space questions.

If you have comments/questions please post them The Space Show blog.  Marks blog, Curmudgeons Corner, is at http://curmudgeons.blogspot.com.