The State Department Is Already Concerned About Weaponized Russian Satellites

Bullet Points

Amid America’s national meltdown over the future Space Force, the State Department implied that the militarization of space is well underway. In a recent press briefing, Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control Dr. Yleem D.S. Poblete suggested that a group of Russian satellites may have been placed in orbit as a weapon against U.S. space assets, an orbital parasite that may be able to maneuver in orbit, evade U.S. sensors, and disable, attack, or otherwise interfere with other orbiting objects like reconnaissance and GPS satellites.


  • Poblete stated that in October 2017, the Russian Ministry of Defense deployed a space object they claimed was a “space apparatus inspector,” per C4ISR’s reporting, whose behavior “was inconsistent with anything seen before from on-orbit inspection or space situational awareness capabilities, including other Russian inspection satellite activities.”
  • Foxtrot Alpha’s Jason Torchinsky has identified three possible Russian satellites (Kosmos-2519, 2521, and 2523) that both meet the description offered by the State Department and have exhibited such anomalous behavior in orbit.
  • The capability to maneuver in space and interact with other space objects is also a mission capability the Air Force has pursued for years. The U.S. has launched the X-37B unmanned space drone, which may have the capability to seize satellites with its tiny adorable drone cargo hold and the maneuverability to potentially operate as a satellite hunter.

A U.S. Air Force depiction of a space interceptDepartment of Defense

  • Concern over Russian satellites may be overblown: While the country’s own “space force” has existed in various incarnations since 1992, but funding and innovation have for the most part tanked, with the country becoming dependent on older Soviet-era launch systems and no modern replacements in sight.

So what does this all mean? Put it this way: In the 2013 film Gravity, a wayward Russian anti-satellite missile test spirals into a low orbit catastrophe. But luckily the entire human race (and Jennifer Lopez, I guess), it appears that the Russians have learned from this parable of unforeseen consequences and decided to go for a more elegant, James Bond-esque solution: Instead of a messy, ham-fisted missile, just use a tiny satellite that deploys from a larger satellite to maneuver and mess with other key space assets.

A Soviet capsule is hijacked by the fictional predecessor to SpaceX in 1967James Bond

This development, if fully confirmed, lends credibility to the creation of a new branch dedicated to locating and defending against terrifying Russian (or Chinese) orbital system designed to attack the very satellites we to detect nuclear missile launches. But before we all have a Sputnik-style heart attack, its worth remembering that the U.S. has invested massive amounts of private and public money towards space superiority. So the next time you see a strange blip in the sky, breathe easy: the first real space war likely won’t be here in your lifetime.

WATCH NEXT:

Retired Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal officially endorsed Rep. Seth Moulton (D-Mass.) for president on July 18. A former Marine infantry officer who deployed to Iraq four times, Moulton joined McChrystal on MSNBC to discuss the endorsement, and whether he's bothered that he hasn't found a spot on the crowded Democratic debates so far.

Read More Show Less
(U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Bill Dodge)

The amphibious assault ship USS Boxer shot down an Iranian drone Thursday in the Strait of Hormuz, President Donald Trump announced.

"The Boxer took defensive action against an Iranian drone which had closed into a very, very near distance – approximately 1,000 yards – ignoring multiple calls to stand down and was threatening the safety of the ship and the ship's crew," Trump said during a White House ceremony. "The drone was immediately destroyed."

"This is the latest of many provocative and hostile actions by Iran against vessels operating in international waters," he continued. "The United States reserves the right to defend our personnel, our facilities, our interests and calls upon all nations to condemn Iran's attempts to disrupt freedom of navigation and global commerce. I also call on other nations to protect their ships as they go through the Strait and to work with us in the future."

Read More Show Less
(U.S. Army/Sgt. Michael L. K. West)

The Army may be celebrating its prized Army Futures Command (AFC) reaching full operational capability, but the organization's leaders still have quite a to-do list in front of them.

AFC commander Gen. John Murray briefed reporters on Thursday alongside Bruce Jette, the Army's Assistant Secretary of Acquisition, Logistics and Technology, on the progress of the Army's modernization roadmap and what's coming down the pipe to help soldiers soldiers win the conflicts of the future.

But while that lawmakers skirted questions on the war in Afghanistan during former Secretary of the Army Mark Esper's confirmation hearing for defense secretary this week, AFC's top priority remains, first and foremost, the soldiers fighting in conflict zones right now.

Read More Show Less

The official trailer for Top Gun: Maverick is here, and if you were praying to God there would be another volleyball scene, you are in luck.

Slated to hit theaters in 2020, the sequel to 1986 classic features Tom Cruise back in the role of Maverick, only this time he's a Navy captain behind the stick of an F/A-18 Hornet.

The two-minute trailer features a number of throwbacks to the original Top Gun: There's Maverick pulling the cover off his motorcycle and driving down the flight line, a shirtless volleyballer (there was no way you would have escaped this), and a piano-playing scene with Great Balls of Fire, my man.

Directed by Joseph Kosinski, the film also stars Jon Hamm, Jennifer Connelly, Miles Teller, and Ed Harris. The film hits theaters on June 26, 2020.

Watch the trailer below:

Top Gun: Maverick - Official Trailer (2020) - Paramount Pictures www.youtube.com

Marine veteran Brian Tally has been fighting for the last three years.

Read More Show Less