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Irina Isakova

PhD in History, policy analyst, independent expert in international relations

In February 2023, the United States presented a roadmap for the practical re-assessement of modern deterrence vis-a-vis geostrategic adversaries. Official statements and decisions coming from Washington at the turn of 2024 confirmed the intent to reach an absolute superiority in space domain with all ensuing consequences.

A theory of success, being at the core of any U.S. national strategy, is a matrix for reading, analyzing, and reporting on foreign policy issues. The theory of success re-shaped in the 2020s is associated with the active introduction of two fundamental concepts—the “Joint Concept for Competing” and the “Competitive Endurance.”

The specificity of modern approaches to deterrence lies in recognizing the principles of asymmetric response and the need to acknowledge the tri-polar configuration of the U.S.-Russia-China nuclear confrontation, as well as, finally, in reassessing the psychology of deterrence predominantly taking into account the Chinese factor (the logic of deterrence and the mentality of the main U.S. adversary in the race for space superiority) rather than the Soviet/Russian mentality. It is indicative that the designers and practitioners of the “space deterrence” architecture were dissatisfied with the ineffectiveness and risks associated with the application of the doctrine of “integrated deterrence” to outer space. Risks were determined by the specifics of space as an environment where actions and their consequences can cause unacceptable damage to both conflicting parties. The need to offer a new effective U.S. national strategy galvanized the search for new meanings and models of the success narrative. At present, according to Jake Sullivan, National Security Advisor in the Biden administration, the United States is at the third stage (after 1945) of national strategy formation, which is characterized by global transformation and increased transnational risks.

The new theory of success—the strategy of “competitive endurance”—was proposed by General Bradley Chance Saltzman, Chief of Space Operations, U.S. Space Force, which he outlined in a concentrated form in February 2023, though it was officially presented on March 7, 2023. It originated as a working version of the rationale for the mission, strategy, and principles of action of the U.S. Space Force under the previous commander of the U.S. Space Force, but appeared in the public domain concurrently with the new Joint Concept for Competing, presented by the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the U.S. Armed Forces. Both documents fundamentally revise the concept of “success” and its achievement in strategic terms.

The Joint Concept for Competing focuses on the so-called “grey zones,” where rivalry could lead to an open conflict, where bets are not on singled out victory, but rather on prioritized goals to achieve long-term, step-by-step dynamic of positive results through multi-layered multi-strategies that entails an integrated approach of joint efforts by government and commercial entities as well as international partners. Most importantly, a new interpretation of deterrence was proposed to be seen:

  • First, not as a policy and strategy to prevent a global conflict between nuclear powers, but as part of a permanent long-term confrontation with strategic adversaries and as a way to achieve dominance;
  • Second, as emphasized necessity of the close linkage of deterrence and effective parallel subversive activities against another nuclear power by all means and ways at all possible levels;
  • Third, as recognition of the need to use military forces without a formal declaration of war under the auspices of other services and agencies in order to solve strategic problems by “pushing” U.S. adversaries into areas where clear U.S. superiority would ensure and consolidate the competitive advantage of the United States;
  • Fourth, as policy facilitating efforts to wear down adversaries in secondary theatres of operations to conceal plans for the main strike, thus making the latter imminent;
  • Finally, as policy of imposing strategic defeat on adversaries by identification of their vulnerabilities as means to achieve non-alternative success, thus, in essence, justifying the right to preemptive strike.

The so-called escalation ladder has undergone significant changes: the vertical escalation was stretched a while the clarity of “red lines” and the pre-negotiated steps of escalation were blurred. The Joint Concept for Competing proposed by the Pentagon strives to incorporate interagency performance criteria (such as “victory” for the Department of Defense, “success” for the State Department, and “development” for the U.S. Agency for International Development) into an unified strategy, and a content forming meaningful decision-making process.

The competitive formula was presented as the three C’s (capacity, communication, credibility). Saltzman’s “competitive endurance” is underpinned by three tenets, namely:

  • 24/7 surveillance of near-Earth orbits (full awareness to avoid surprises in space);
  • blocking any action against U.S. Space Force facilities/on-orbit constellations and missions (denying first mover advantage in space);
  • conducting counter-actions to side-line adversaries with minimal impact on the space environment, so as not to deteriorate conditions for implementing own missions in space, such as monitoring, reconnaissance, identification, targeting, relocation (responsible counter-space campaigns).

NATO allies and partners in the Asia-Pacific are undoubtedly priority, but not the only targets for the United States in its search for sources to strengthen its global multilevel space architecture. Washington is actively working to involve African and South American countries in its space plans, including appeals to the BRICS/BRICS+ nations. The latter are engaged in cooperation through bilateral agreements and work in regional space alliances. Moreover, the U.S. Space Force has established the position of Regional Coordinator—Regional Space Advisor. As of February 2024, there is a regional advisor position in South Korea and one is planned for Japan. The network of advisors under the auspices of the U.S. Space Force will have to function as the Regional Space Advisor’s Security Cooperation Worldforce. Space and geopolitics are intertwined both in orbit and on the ground.

While deterrence was focused on the concept of “success means fear/destruction factor,” the strategy of “competitive endurance” is built around the conceptual linkage of “success means vulnerability/invulnerability.” Moreover, the latter concept is projected more like a process: from “vulnerability” through “vulnerability protected” to “invulnerability”. Currently, the concept is in the initial phase of its materialization—the vulnerability phase. Yet by 2030, it is expected that the deep space monitoring regime for deep space and, by extension, both low and medium-Earth, as well as near-lunar orbits will become 24/7. The year 2030 is mentioned by Washington as the date of completion and operationalization of all components of in its security architecture. But even today, in the process of introducing new elements, the testing of space vehicles and operational control plans for managing integrated systems and platforms are being tested. is under way. To speed up the process, a new Space Futures Command is currently being created.

Setting the goal of gaining superiority in space is linked to maintaining superiority on land, at sea and in cyberspace, in militarily sphere, in economics, etc. The rigid goal setting was crystallized in the White Paper on Competitive Endurance (2024), which condensed the principles of the new philosophy of the U.S. Space Force after a year of in-depth discussions between professionals and policymakers. Acknowledging the possibility of radical changes in approaches due to technical innovations applied in the process of implementation of the plans, the author of competitive endurance urged not to call it a doctrine but rather consider it as a starting theoretical point justifying the global role of the United States.

In fact, an attempt is now being made to split up the global space sector, which has so far allowed some mobility of participants in international projects. The era of global cooperation in space is coming to an end with attempts to create a bloc approach to space colonization under the control of the U.S. Space Force, the so-called Guardians with mission to protect access to space, return to Earth, and different operations in space. This mission is manifested in the U.S. Space Force White Paper titled Competitive Endurance: A Proposed Theory of Success for the Space Force (2024). The entry ticket to the new space economy for other nations is linked with their participation in the U.S. technology project.

The new theory of success proposed by the US Space Force is an attempt to justify the force component in space exploration. Obviously, these plans have to be judged not only as a new Manhattan project, but also as a military-economic support for the establishment of a new world order. But this becomes possible only through the legitimization of a new norms of international space law allowing for this the domination.

Currently the new theory of success is a concept in the making; the formula of success dictates new requirements for management, education and recruitment systems and methods. This success strategy already enjoys bipartisan support, and regardless of the outcome of the 2024 presidential election, it is destined for long-term and comprehensive application. Moreover, each of the possible winning parties will fix focus their attention on the continuity of approaches to competitive endurance. The Joint Concept of Competing, even though related to the intellectual search for the practical application of deterrence in a new tech reality, was essentially a response, and not the most successful one, to a specific foreign policy situation as well as an attempt to conceptualize the conduct of a proxy war against a nuclear power on its territory and near its borders. The logic of “package presentations” is similar to the Biden administration’s proposals to provide financial assistance to Israel, Ukraine, to contain China, and to strengthen the U.S. southern border. Similarly, interlinking the Joint Concept for Competing and the Competitive Endurance Strategy is artificial and most likely temporary, as its existence, in the very least, may cast doubt on the feasibility of a development model aimed at certifying the US leading role of the U.S. in the space economy.

 

In February 2023, the United States presented a roadmap for the practical re-assessement of modern deterrence vis-a-vis geostrategic adversaries. Official statements and decisions coming from Washington at the turn of 2024 confirmed the intent to reach an absolute superiority in space domain with all ensuing consequences. [1]

From ‘Deterrence’ to ‘Competitive Endurance’

A theory of success, being at the core of any U.S. national strategy, is a matrix for reading, analyzing, and reporting on foreign policy issues. The theory of success re-shaped in the 2020s is associated with the active introduction of two fundamental concepts—the “Joint Concept for Competing” and the “Competitive Endurance.”

The entire period of confrontation between the two systems (capitalist and socialist) after World War II from 1948 to 1991 was dominated by the strategy of containment, initially formulated by George Kennan, famous American diplomat, known for his concept of deterring the influence of the USSR. The second pillar of the strategy was the Marshall Plan as the main approach to rebuilding post-war European economies with the leading role of the United States. Deterrence (with all its variations, including the concept of mutual assured destruction) was based on the theory of success, proposed by George Kennan. The main tenets of the theory of success of the Cold War period came down to assessing the nature of military power and capabilities of countries or regions that could generate and create strategically significant military potential to ensure control over the essential regions globally and thus prevail. Kennan’s theory was also premised on the inviolability of the capitalist system’s economic advantages. Kennan believed success was tantamount to the influence and dominance of the West, led by the U.S. as a superpower. It could be assured via control over the key regions as well as through certain security measures. However, the collapse of the Soviet Union and the emergence of a unipolar world led by the United States changed the attitude of the American elite to deterrence, and, as a consequence, to the essence of a ‘success’ in the strategic sense. [2]

The entire 1990s and the first decade of the 21st century passed under the banner of expanding the rules-based world order proposed by the United States at a time when there was no obvious competition in the international arena, and with the accompanying spate of economic problems.

The notion of deterrence underwent re-evaluation of optimal ways to achieve the key goals. The emphasis on all-domain military operations, cybersecurity, and the use of space domain in support of military operations has revealed a shift from predominantly “deterrence by punishment” to “deterrence by denial.” Most recent reassessments of deterrence as “space deterrence” [3] revealed a range of new strategists and geopoliticians who recognized the new modification as predominantly a concept of “mixed deterrence”—deterrence by denial followed by the capability of inflicting unacceptable damage to adversaries if the first phase (denial of access) proves ineffective; the “offense dominant” was seen as not the most desirable [4], but possible option.

On January 10, 2024, the U.S. commitment to “mixed deterrence” was reaffirmed by Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks, who served as acting Secretary of Defense [5] in February 2024.

The specificity of modern approaches to deterrence lies in recognizing the principles of asymmetric response and the need to acknowledge the tri-polar configuration of the U.S.-Russia-China nuclear confrontation, [6] as well as, finally, in reassessing the psychology of deterrence predominantly taking into account the Chinese factor (the logic of deterrence and the mentality of the main U.S. adversary in the race for space superiority) rather than the Soviet/Russian mentality. It is indicative that the designers and practitioners of the “space deterrence” architecture were dissatisfied with the ineffectiveness and risks associated with the application of the doctrine of “integrated deterrence” to outer space. Risks were determined by the specifics of space as an environment where actions and their consequences can cause unacceptable damage to both conflicting parties. The need to offer a new effective U.S. national strategy galvanized the search for new meanings and models of the success narrative. At present, according to Jake Sullivan, National Security Advisor in the Biden administration, the United States is at the third stage (after 1945) of national strategy formation, which is characterized by global transformation and increased transnational risks.

The new theory of success—the strategy of “competitive endurance”—was proposed by General Bradley Chance Saltzman, Chief of Space Operations, U.S. Space Force, which he outlined in a concentrated form in February 2023, though it was officially presented on March 7, 2023. It originated as a working version of the rationale for the mission, strategy, and principles of action of the U.S. Space Force under the previous commander of the U.S. Space Force, but appeared in the public domain concurrently with the new Joint Concept for Competing, presented by the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the U.S. Armed Forces. Both documents fundamentally revise the concept of “success” and its achievement in strategic terms.

The Joint Concept for Competing

The Joint Concept for Competing focuses on the so-called “grey zones,” where rivalry could lead to an open conflict, where bets are not on singled out victory, but rather on prioritized goals to achieve long-term, step-by-step dynamic of positive results through multi-layered multi-strategies that entails an integrated approach of joint efforts by government and commercial entities as well as international partners. Most importantly, a new interpretation of deterrence was proposed to be seen:

  • First, not as a policy and strategy to prevent a global conflict between nuclear powers, but as part of a permanent long-term confrontation with strategic adversaries and as a way to achieve dominance;
  • Second, as emphasized necessity of the close linkage of deterrence and effective parallel subversive activities against another nuclear power by all means and ways at all possible levels;
  • Third, as recognition of the need to use military forces without a formal declaration of war under the auspices of other services and agencies in order to solve strategic problems by “pushing” U.S. adversaries into areas where clear U.S. superiority would ensure and consolidate the competitive advantage of the United States;
  • Fourth, as policy facilitating efforts to wear down adversaries in secondary theatres of operations to conceal plans for the main strike, thus making the latter imminent;
  • Finally, as policy of imposing strategic defeat on adversaries by identification of their vulnerabilities as means to achieve non-alternative success, thus, in essence, justifying the right to preemptive strike.
    • The so-called escalation ladder has undergone significant changes: the vertical escalation was stretched a while the clarity of “red lines” and the pre-negotiated steps of escalation were blurred. The Joint Concept for Competing proposed by the Pentagon strives to incorporate interagency performance criteria (such as “victory” for the Department of Defense, “success” for the State Department, and “development” for the U.S. Agency for International Development) into an unified strategy, and a content forming meaningful decision-making process.

      The explicitly provocative interpretation of deterrence in the Joint Concept for Competing (JCC) draws attention to the way how information regarding the JCC existence entered the public policy debates, given that this seems rather unusual format. According to U.S. analysts, being the sole product of Pentagon military personnel, the document signals disagreement between military and civilian strategists, or demonstrates an overly provocative nature of its content narrative. But the repeated and persistent dumping of almost linguistically identical publications, prepared both by very serious authors, such as Anthony H. Cordesman, Emeritus Chair in Strategy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), as well as by other very solid specialized outlets publications of like the CSIS media and specialized military periodicals, [7] suggests that this was aimed to trigger some kind of discussion about changes in the interpretation of deterrence. Because according to the proposed logic, the ladder of escalation, in all honesty, becomes very slippery. An indirect confirmation of the real existence of the given approach to deterrence was provided by none other than CIA Director William Burns. Calling for the prioritized funding of his service’s grey and shadow operations, he stated in his article “Spycraft and Statecraft: Transforming the CIA for an Age of Competition” published in Foreign Affairs that these priorities are proved by funding. [8]

      Competitive Endurance Theory

      The competitive formula was presented as the three C’s (capacity, communication, credibility). Saltzman’s “competitive endurance” is underpinned by three tenets, namely:

      • 24/7 surveillance of near-Earth orbits (full awareness to avoid surprises in space);

      • blocking any action against U.S. Space Force facilities/on-orbit constellations and missions (denying first mover advantage in space);
      • conducting counter-actions to side-line adversaries with minimal impact on the space environment, so as not to deteriorate conditions for implementing own missions in space, such as monitoring, reconnaissance, identification, targeting, relocation (responsible counter-space campaigns). [9]

      During 2023, the testing of technological solutions, including the use of U.S. Space Force in armed conflicts, resulted in identifying priorities of space monitoring and reconnaissance pattern. More specifically, it’s the reliance on a large number of proliferated satellites and disintegration of space constellations in order to perform functions that allow to duplicate and conceal the purpose of specific space architecture elements (proliferation); rapid orbital launch of satellites to replace end-of-life items (rapid launch); on-orbit satellites servicing. The focus is on significant proliferation of ground-based and orbital space architecture elements, satellite networks, the number of space launch sites and space launch ports in the U.S. and globally; and the neutralization of conditions that hinder the implementation of these plans. For instance, the U.S. proposal of a unilateral moratorium on debris-generating activities in space, rebranded into initiative to promote the global moratorium (Zero Debris Charter), could be seen This was essentially as a ban on certain types of anti-satellite weapons threatening proposed pattern of proliferated [10] space constellations. The European Space Agency and major transnational space corporations in Europe were allowed to take a lead in introduction of a new restrictive system. Another example is establishing in 2023 of a U.S. Space Force strike unit specializing on removing physical obstacles on orbits. Likewise, measures are being taken to limit the use of non-U.S Location-Based Navigation systems (BeiDou, GLONASS, etc.) by other countries and regional space alliances.

      The Essential Partners

      The technological requirements for the space architecture reveal the level of priority allies and partners and determine the formation of new alliances. The influence of strategy can be traced in defining geopolitical regions of importance to the U.S. (where their significance in building a new space architecture and infrastructure becomes a key point) and in forming new geopolitical alliances (of differentiated levels). [11] Of particular relevance for understanding the new trends are:

      • Combined Space Operations (CSpO) Initiative—Vision 2031: In February 2022 the membership of the Five Eyes Alliance was extended to Germany and France, and later to Italy, Japan, and Norway by the DOD resolution (December 20, 2023). This is currently the initiative of ten countries, but the membership may increase as Spain is being considered as a candidate for joining it.
      • Agreement on the establishment of the Allied Persistent Surveillance from Space Initiative (APSS, Aquila). The document was signed by 16 NATO nations and the appellant countries at the time—Sweden and Finland.
      • Agreement on the establishment of a ground-based radar system for monitoring satellites in geosynchronous orbit on the territory of the United States, Great Britain and Australia within the framework of the trilateral AUKUS military alliance, allowing for 24/7 global monitoring of near-Earth and near-lunar space and deep space (Trilateral Deep Space Advanced Radar—DARC).
      • An important form of partners’ contribution to the construction of the space architecture was the possibility of reaching agreements on the use of space sector infrastructure facilities within the framework of bilateral agreements on cooperation in the field of space security, for example, a treaty with Japan (QZSS satellites) and Norway (the first European continental space launch site).

      NATO allies and partners in the Asia-Pacific are undoubtedly priority, but not the only targets for the United States in its search for sources to strengthen its global multilevel space architecture. Washington is actively working to involve African and South American countries in its space plans, including appeals to the BRICS/BRICS+ nations. The latter are engaged in cooperation through bilateral agreements and work in regional space alliances. Moreover, the U.S. Space Force has established the position of Regional Coordinator—Regional Space Advisor. As of February 2024, there is a regional advisor position in South Korea and one is planned for Japan. The network of advisors under the auspices of the U.S. Space Force will have to function as the Regional Space Advisor’s Security Cooperation Worldforce. [12] Space and geopolitics are intertwined both in orbit and on the ground.

      Testing Stage as…

      While deterrence was focused on the concept of “success means fear/destruction factor,” the strategy of “competitive endurance” is built around the conceptual linkage of “success means vulnerability/invulnerability.” Moreover, the latter concept is projected more like a process: from “vulnerability” through “vulnerability protected” to “invulnerability”. Currently, the concept is in the initial phase of its materialization—the vulnerability phase. Yet by 2030, it is expected that the deep space monitoring regime for deep space and, by extension, both low and medium-Earth, as well as near-lunar orbits will become 24/7. The year 2030 is mentioned by Washington as the date of completion and operationalization of all components of in its security architecture. But even today, in the process of introducing new elements, the testing of space vehicles and operational control plans for managing integrated systems and platforms are being tested. is under way. To speed up the process, a new Space Futures Command [13] is currently being created.

      It is significant that regardless of the initially stated goals and motives, Operation Prosperity Guardian in the Red Sea can be viewed in conjunction with certain facts:

      • launching the U.S. Space Forces regional command for Europe and Africa (USSPACEFOR-EURAF) regional command on December 8, 2023; currently the unified office, but with plans for the eventual separation of areas of responsibility;
      • the admission by the US Secretary of Air Force and Space Force Frank Kendall III in November 2023 that command and control, targeting, and intelligence communications, as well as communications between the Space Force and Navy (submarine) units, least tested in real-time conditions;
      • Space Operations Commander Gen. Bradley Chance Saltzman’s call for space coalition allies that they “should train as fight”;
      • leveraging the experience of the U.S. Navy’s TaskForce 59 in managing combined integrated manned and robotic unmanned units.

      By the way, Secretary of the Air Force and Space Force Frank Kendall initiated regular U.S. Space Force exercises at the Air Force and Space Forces Association Symposium on February 12, 2024.

      Setting the goal of gaining superiority in space is linked to maintaining superiority on land, at sea and in cyberspace, in militarily sphere, in economics, etc. The rigid goal setting was crystallized in the White Paper on Competitive Endurance (2024), which condensed the principles of the new philosophy of the U.S. Space Force after a year of in-depth discussions between professionals and policymakers. Acknowledging the possibility of radical changes in approaches due to technical innovations applied in the process of implementation of the plans, the author of competitive endurance urged not to call it a doctrine but rather consider it as a starting theoretical point justifying the global role of the United States. [14]

      Industrial Strategy

      The high financial, technological and resource costs of implementing the announced plans, some raw materials and personnel shortages, as well as the emphasis on the tight deadlines for the implementation of the “competitiveness” project forced the U.S. government to expand the base of participants in the construction of the U.S. Space Force infrastructure. The plan calls for engaging besides traditional military-industrial complex companies, with private small and medium-sized businesses, commercial sector start-ups, and international partners.

      In the US there have been public acknowledgements that the U.S. military-industrial complex is unable to cope with the implementation of the SDI 2.0 program without engaging the capabilities of the allies and partners. The statement regarding insufficiency of the U.S. capacity to carry out potential for implementation of these plans appeared in Foreign Affairs magazine in an article titled America Can’t Win the Tech Race Alone. [15] On February 11, 2024 the National Defense Industrial Strategy (NDIS), the first in the history of the U.S. Department of Defense, was adopted, which can be seen as confirmation of the problem existence. was adopted. The NDIS introduced the concepts of “economic deterrence” and “industrial deterrence” into the text of the official document. [16]

      To achieve these goals, a new simplified funding and testing mechanism for experimental military programs has been developed in the past 6 months, with the reduction of secrecy requirements as DoD rewrote classification policy for secret space programs.

      A serious incentive for participation in the expanded list of partners is the promise of involvement in the new multi-trillion-dollar space economy. Plans for new satellites, their launches and maintenance, industrial mining and processing of minerals in space are inextricably linked with the development of to the space economy evolving. The Pentagon, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Transportation, the Department of State, and the U.S. Agency for International Development will apparently take charge. In the age of the space industrial and technological revolution, the U.S. sees itself as a leader in the industrial production leader of the space economy. [17] Programs for the long- and short-term development of space [18] were released in December 2023 and in early 2024. The programs include not only cooperation parameters, but also conditions, mechanisms of restrictive measures and sanctions regimes in various fields, such as high technology, innovative materials, supply chains of industrially manufactured products and goods, that must be imposed on unfriendly countries. In fact, an attempt is now being made to split up the global space sector, which has so far allowed some mobility of participants in international projects. The era of global cooperation in space is coming to an end with attempts to create a bloc approach to space colonization under the control of the U.S. Space Force, the so-called Guardians with mission to protect access to space, return to Earth, and different operations in space. This mission is manifested in the U.S. Space Force White Paper titled Competitive Endurance: A Proposed Theory of Success for the Space Force (2024). The entry ticket to the new space economy for other nations is linked with their participation in the U.S. technology project.

      The new theory of success proposed by the US Space Force is an attempt to justify the force component in space exploration. Obviously, these plans have to be judged not only as a new Manhattan project, but also as a military-economic support for the establishment of a new world order. [19] But this becomes possible only through the legitimization of a new norms of international space law allowing for this the domination.

      Legal Support of Competitive Endurance: A Race for Narrative

      The implementation of the legal norms of international space law is becoming an acute form of struggle for a new world law order in space. The realization of plans is linked to the establishment of new regulations/rules of using the outer space. The initial attempts to transform the international space law, dating back to the Obama and then the Trump administrations, were aimed at outer space privatization, legalization of property rights and securing legal rights for private commercial companies in the space sector. At the end of 2023, there were the mounting effort to develop some kind of classification, criteria for the efficiency of the space economy, but even reports prepared in the U.S. and the EU acknowledged the lack of correct statistics. Nevertheless, currently there is a high demand for new standards in the industrial development of outer space, primarily near-Earth space, near-lunar space, the Moon, asteroids, and standards for industrial production, extraction and processing of minerals as well as their transportation back to Earth is high on the current agenda. The urgency of developing new regulations [20] is tied pegged to 2030, the year of the expected completion of the last phase of the U.S. global space system deployment and the start of industrial production in near-lunar orbit.

      Back in 2021 U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin promised to deal with the chaos in the field of space law with an aim to promote the Pentagon’s interests. [21] In 2023–2024, the following areas of effort towards the to implement of new regulations can be seen:

      • on standardization of modules/structures in low and medium orbits (January 24, 2024);
      • on traffic safety;
      • on the state of space as the “contested environment”.

      The adoption of the Zero Debris Charter as a continuation of the U.S. unilateral moratorium is expected in the first half of 2024. It is easy to assume that, given the dramatic increase in numbers of participants in space missions and the deployment of industrial projects in space, the issues of legal regulation of space activities are taking central stage, including such issues as orbital space quotas, space launch authorization, radio frequency allocation, etc. Since the international space law is coming to the forefront of defending upholding the national interests, the mechanism for adopting new norms and the adherence enforcement mechanism for enforcing compliance are becoming no less as important than as the narratives themselves. [22]

      The Effect of Influence

      Currently the new theory of success is a concept in the making; the formula of success dictates new requirements for management, education and recruitment systems and methods. This success strategy already enjoys bipartisan support, and regardless of the outcome of the 2024 presidential election, it is destined for long-term and comprehensive application. Moreover, each of the possible winning parties will fix focus their attention on the continuity of approaches to competitive endurance. The Joint Concept of Competing, even though related to the intellectual search for the practical application of deterrence in a new tech reality, was essentially a response, and not the most successful one, to a specific foreign policy situation as well as an attempt to conceptualize the conduct of a proxy war against a nuclear power on its territory and near its borders. The logic of “package presentations” is similar to the Biden administration’s proposals to provide financial assistance to Israel, Ukraine, to contain China, and to strengthen the U.S. southern border. Similarly, interlinking the Joint Concept for Competing and the Competitive Endurance Strategy is artificial and most likely temporary, as its existence, in the very least, may cast doubt on the feasibility of a development model aimed at certifying the US leading role of the U.S. in the space economy.

      Afterword

      Even a brief analysis of both concepts—competing and competitive endurance—clearly demonstrates that:

      • Revival the effectiveness of deterrence without acknowledgement of developing new meanings and mechanisms of space deterrence is unproductive.
      • Resolution of any modern conflict, even with only indirect U.S. involvement, is impossible without taking into account the potential and capabilities of the U.S. Space Force into account. Obviously, any, even indirect, participation of the U.S. in conflicts of any intensity and any form at this stage, even if indirect, cannot be considered without reference to the Joint Concept for Competing and the Concept of Competitive Endurance.
      • Implementing U.S. plans to build a global space security architecture is only possible with input from allies and partners as well as acceptance of the legal regulations proposed by the U.S. for the space economy. The proposed model is possible only if the international community agrees to participate in building a space economy as the financial-administrative pyramid type, in defiance of the trends for multipolarity.

      1. Unshin Lee Harpley, Saltzman Announces Fourth Space Force Field Command: Space Future Command, Air and Space Forces Magazine, February 12, 2024 www.airandspaceforces.com

      2. Steven Heffington, Channelling the Legacy of Kennan: Theory of Success in Great Power Competition, February 8, 2022, www.mwi.westpoint.edu

      3. Col. Jefrey W.Pickler, 21st Century Warfare Requires 21st Century Deterrence, Consordium , July 28, 2023: Gregory Adamowicz, The Key to Successful Space Deterrence: A Comprehensive Approach, isp page, September 1, 2023

      4. Ivan Golden, US Space Deterrence Strategy Unveiled, THX News Breaking News First, January 10, 2024: Greg Hadley, To Deter Attacks in Space, US Needs Resilience-and an ‘Offensive Threat’ Experts Say, Air and Space Forces Magazine, April 6, 2023. www.airandspaceforces.com

      5. David Vergun, Hicks: US Aims to Prevent Conflict in Space, Other Domains Through Deterrence, DoD News, January 10, 2024, www.defense.gov

      6. US Naval Institute Staff, Report to Congress on Great Power Competition, USNI News, www.news.usni.org

      7. Jake Sullivan, The Sources of American Power: A Foreign Policy for a Changed World, Foreign Affairs, November/December 2023, published on January 30, 2024, www.foreignaffairs.com

      8. Theresa Hitchens, Space Force Chief outlines 3-part ‘competitive endurance’ theory aimed at space superiority, Breaking Defense, March 7, 2023

      9. US Naval Institute Staff, Pentagon’s Joint Concept for Competing, USNI News, March 9, 2023, www.news.usmi.org

      10. Anthony H, Cordesman, The US Joint Chiefs New Strategy Paper on Joint Concept for Competing, CSIS, March 17 2023, www.scis.org; James Homes, Joint Concept for Competing: The Best Way for the Pentagon To ‘Compete’ with China, RealClearDefense, March 2023; Ryan Shaw, Whistling in the Dark: Why the Pentagon’s Joint Concept for Competing is not Enough, Small Wars Journal, 11/09/2023

      11. William J Burns. Spycraft and Statecraft: Transforming the CIA for an Age of Competition, Foreign Affairs, March/April 2024, published on January 30, 2024. www.foreignaffairs.com

      12. John W, Jay Raymond, Opinion: How the US Space Force Is Trying to bring order to increasingly messy outer space, The Washington Post, November 29, 2021

      13. Sandra Erwin. US sharpens plan for military space e race, SpaceNews, July 1, 2023, www.spacenews.com

      14. Le Bourget, ESA announces the Zero Debris Charter initiative supported by Airbus Defence and Space, OHB and Thales Alenia Space, EESA, June 22, 2023.

      15. Fact Sheet: Strengthening US International Space Partnerships, White House Briefing Room Statements and Releases, December 20, 2023 . www.whitehouse.gov

      16. Unshin Lee Harpley, Saltzman Announces Fourth Space Force Field Command: Space Future Command, Air and Space Forces Magazine, February 12, 2024. www.airandspaceforces.com

      17. White Paper on Competitive Endurance: A Proposed Theory of Success for the US Space Force, Office of the Chief of Space Operations, Strategic Initiatives Group, January 11, 2024: Todd Harrison, Where the Space Force’s new ‘theory of success’ succeeds, DefenseOne, January 22, 2024.

      18. Christoper Thomas and Sarah Kreps, America Can’t Win the Tech Race Alone: Keeping Its Edge Over China Will Require US Investment in Innovation Abroad, Foreign Affairs, January 26, 2024

      19. DoD Releases First-Ever National Defense Industrial Strategy, DoD News, January 11, 2024 www,defense.gov

      20. Jason Rainbow, Startups call for streamlined US regulations for emerging space capabilities, SpaceNews, February 1, 2024, www.spacenews.com

      21. Public Release of Space Manufacturing Technology Report, NASA, Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, submitted to the National Space Council, December 20, 2023, pp.13.

      22. DoD Prioritizing Cooperation with Allies in Space, by Joseph Clark, DoD News, December 14, 2023, www.defense.gov, Tom Temin, Update on defense-industrial-base crucial sector, Federal News Network, February 6, 2024

(votes: 4, rating: 5)
 (4 votes)

Poll conducted

  1. In your opinion, what are the US long-term goals for Russia?
    U.S. wants to establish partnership relations with Russia on condition that it meets the U.S. requirements  
     33 (31%)
    U.S. wants to deter Russia’s military and political activity  
     30 (28%)
    U.S. wants to dissolve Russia  
     24 (22%)
    U.S. wants to establish alliance relations with Russia under the US conditions to rival China  
     21 (19%)
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