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Is It Possible to Ban Weapons in Space?

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Ronald Reagan's space-based missile-defense program died with the Cold War, but satellites are now key to America's military superiority, as our Army, Air Force and Navy -- even the Marine Corps -- rely on satellites for communication, surveillance and the targeting of "smart bombs." With space militarized, the big question now is whether it will be "weaponized." Today, at the UN Conference on Disarmament in Geneva, Switzerland, Russia and China proposed a treaty banning weapons in outer space. Three years ago, the US stood alone against 160 nations in opposition to such a treaty. Do Russia and China mean it? Is their real target the land-based missile defense proposed by President Bush? Would a race to put weapons in space be counter-productive for all the countries involved or is it inevitable?

Credits

Guests:
Teresa Hitchens - Director, Center for Defense Information, Ashley Tellis - Senior Associate, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Pavel Podvig - Researcher, Stanford's Center for International Security and Cooperation, Anton La Guardia - Defense and Security Correspondent, Economist, Geoffrey Forden - former Weapons Inspector, United Nations

Host:
Warren Olney

Producers:
Dan Konecky, Katie Cooper, Sonya Geis