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Dr. Nader Elhefnawy, Friday, 6-8-12 June 8, 2012

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Dr. Nader Elhefnawy, Friday, 6-8-12


Guest:  Dr. Nader Elhefnawy.  Topics:  Space warfare reality and hype.  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 Dr. Nader Elhefnawy back to the program to discuss his March 26, 2012 Space Review article, “Why we fall for the hype: contextualizing our thought on space warfare (www.thespacereview.com/article/2052/1).”  This was about a two hour program with a break after the first hour.  Dr. Elhefnawy also has two blogs which may interest you: http://naderelhefnawy.blogspot.com and http://raritania.blogspot.com.  We started our discussion by talking about Dr. Elhefnawy’s interest in the subject, his previous Space Review articles on the subject, and the issue of making accurate predictions.  Nader suggested that there is much hype driving the technology predictions suggesting a possible space warfare outcome that also drive political policy in some instances.  He talked about how technology development in the 19th century had more impact in changing the world than modern era technology.  Our guest cited examples of this throughout our discussion but one example we talked about more so than others dealt with the development of the telegraph.  Dr. Elhefnawy suggested that most of the hyped space weapons systems are not doable in the first place.  Another document he cited about this issue was the Joint Vision 2020 report (www.fs.fed.us/fire/doctrine/genesis_and_evolution/source_materials/joint_vision_2020.pdf).  Nader talked about space weapon systems vulnerabilities and again said that the expectations and hype do not match reality.  Several callers engaged with Nader on cause and reaction, SDI, missile defense, anti-satellite warfare, and the pre-positioning of weapons platforms in space.

In our second segment, I asked our guest how we in the public can best defend ourselves against hype, rhetoric, political agendas, and more given we do not have the expertise to always be able to pick up on the excessive claims and fears.  As you will hear, we remain vulnerable to excessive hype not just on technology and space but on a wide range of things impacting our national and international policy.  In this segment we did talk about technology being developed by China, inquiring if Nader thought this was all hype too.  Nader cited some operational stats to drive home some of his points.  Other issues and game changing technologies that came up in this segment included drones and the launch cost for space access. Nader also talked about the Eureka Paradigm and then he received a question from caller Mike about the European Code of Conduct that we have discussed many times on the show.  Near the end, an interesting comparison was made with aerial warfare from 1914-1918.  In just 7-11 years, aviation had advanced to fighting in the skies in WW1.  More than fifty years after Sputnik, the point was made we are not even at the 1914 equivalent level for space warfare, thus supporting Dr. Elhefnawy’s premise that we fall for the hype in this matter.

Please post your questions/comments on The Space Show blog.  If you want to email our guest, please do so through me and I will forward your note to him.