Strategy in Space: Promoting America's Security in the Twenty-First Century

Date of Graduation

Spring 2007


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

Dana Johnson


Space may seem of secondary importance when discussing America's most pressing threats. As global terrorism, energy dependencies, and domestic issues all garner considerable attention, space security can become marginalized in Washington's priorities. Often overlooked though is the domain's vast importance to the civil, commercial, and particularly the military sectors as America's security framework is largely conducted through the space medium. This thesis examines the extent to which America relies on space to provide for national security and economic prosperity and analyzes the geopolitical implications resulting from progressive steps toward defending its space assets. Codifying space's importance to the United States will be essential in arguing the need for continued research and development on space weapons systems. Furthermore, once the debate of weaponization is grounded firmly in technical feasibilities, establishing the justification for more aggressive policies on space will be advanced. Examining how America's adversaries react to the international security dilemma and how the United States must reevaluate its post-Cold War strategic paradigms can provide those in Washington with the wherewithal to support the establishment of systems to defend space. Denying America's access to space presents perhaps the most dangerous notion to its security in the twenty-first century, and to limit America's options through treaty regimes or by simply ignoring the threats ultimately forces the United States toward weaponization.


space weaponization, space security, militarization, ballistic missile defense, inevitability

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


© Michael S. Onesko