Washington’s Defense Space Strategy is provoking an arms race in outer space and threatening international security while trying to blame a nonexistent Moscow threat, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) has said.

“To justify the implementation of this destructive course, which provokes an arms race in outer space and destabilizes the international security situation, Washington has resorted to the usual tactics of blaming others,” the MFA said in a statement on Friday.

In the US Defense Space Strategy, the declassified summary of which was published on Wednesday, the Pentagon simply asserts that “China and Russia have weaponized space and turned it into a warfighting domain.” Without offering any evidence or specifics, the Pentagon references the 2014 Russian military doctrine as envisioning the possibility of challenging the US operations in orbit.

DoD released the Defense Space Strategy today. Read the unclassified summary here:

“Of course, there is nothing of the kind in the Military Doctrine of Russia,” the MFA says, adding that the document is freely available to anyone who wishes to check that. The doctrine focuses on countering the attempts of other states to achieve military superiority by placing weapons in outer space, which would be in violation of the 1967 Outer Space Treaty.

While the US says it wants to “promote standards and norms of behavior in space” favorable to its interests, Washington has refused to discuss Russian and Chinese proposals for a legally binding international instrument to prevent a space arms race, the MFA added.

According to the Defense Space Strategy, the US “relies on space-based capabilities to project and employ power on a global scale” more than any other country, to the point where “space capabilities not only enhance, but enable our way of life and way of war.”

US national security and prosperity require unfettered access to and freedom to operate in the space domain.  

President Donald Trump established the Space Force as the sixth service branch of the US military in December 2019. The fledgling operation is currently a subset of the US Air Force. 

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