Space Weapons in a Small Town Near You? The Race to Militarize Space


Space weapons are lurking beneath a small town near you. Though this statement sounds like a sci-fi nightmare only the Pentagon could conjure up, an on-going environmental impact study may find states such as Ohio and New York a great place for shooting down Russian or Chinese satellites as they orbit the planet.

When it comes to space warfare, this mad future is now, and the Pentagon is licking their chops along with super-rich defense contractors who are eyeing Maine and Michigan for Ground-based Mid-Course Missile Defense locations, better known in defense parlance as a GMD site. Like nuclear missiles, GMD interceptors are stored and launched from underground silos.

If the Pentagon were to give a green light for such weapon locations, the money spent on building and maintaining a GMD battery would reach well into the billions, and most of it will go to defense contractors such as Boeing or Lockheed Martin. Without a doubt, any state could use that money for its marginalized schools, or to fund long-term care for veterans home from Afghanistan and Iraq, or even to extend unemployment benefits.

But the Pentagon and many Congressional hawks continue to push hard for a US missile defense system that has cost taxpayers over $150 billion since the 1980s, yet has failed numerous times under testing, let alone proven itself under fire. Indeed, a GMD test failed last summer when the interceptor stalled as it targeted a ballistic missile streaking through space over the Pacific Ocean.

Keeping a close eye on the Pentagon’s missile defense program – which was born during the Reagan administration and naively tagged “Star Wars” by the mainstream media – is Bruce Gagnon of the Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space. Residing in Maine, Gagnon is a globally-recognized peace activist who is fighting hard to stop mankind from going to war in space.

Why the US has spent billions on unproven missile defense is a mystery that Gagnon, a veteran of the Air Force, has chased for over 30 years now. What has become so obvious, he says, is how missile defense has become the Big Lie – perhaps the biggest sham of all time.Because, according to Gagnon, it’s not about defense: Missile defense is a mask hiding this war technology’s true identity – space weapons.

“Missile defense,” says Gagnon, “is a Trojan Horse.”

“The so-called missile defense system, the idea of having a bullet-hit-a-bullet in space to protect the continental US or Japan, is more about offense than defense. The true purpose of this arms program is to control and dominate space. And who ever controls space will control the earth.”

Modern warfare has become dependent on satellites to the point that shooting them down could mean victory against adversaries, even if trashing earth’s lower orbits is the end result. In a 2008 test, the US Navy shot down what was described as a “malfunctioning” satellite as it orbited over Hawaii, but Wikileaks later revealed the test was also meant to intimidate China.

Some reject Gagnon’s Trojan Horse theory as too outlandish. The US government, however, apparently takes Gagnon’s work very, very seriously, as he has felt the chill of government eaves-dropping for years.

Not long after the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan started, Gagnon strongly suspected he and his family were being spied on, but he didn’t have any evidence, and he didn’t know who might be behind it.

Still, he was caught off guard when the American Civil Liberties Union called and told him it had uncovered court documents revealing that NASA and the U.S. Air Force were secretly monitoring him, his family, and the Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space.

“We’re a small organization with meager resources,” said Gagnon. “They feel threatened by us? That tells us something.”

Surprisingly, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), often described as a liberal Senator by the press, has thrown his support behind any future GMD site in Ohio. Brown stated that, “Designating (Ohio) as a missile defense site would create local jobs and strengthen the regional economy.”

Brown has received a miniscule amount of campaign funding from actual defense contractors – just $125,000 of the $41 million of campaign funding he’s reaped since 1991, according to, a comprehensive resource for federal campaign contributions and lobbying influence. However, the money that may be spent by defense contractors in Ohio is apparently just too good to turn down. The irony is, much of the billions in taxpayers’ dollars awarded to build the GMD site would go to the defense contractor’s out-of-state executives and shareholders.

There’s also Maine Representative Andrea Boland, a liberal Democrat who told Gagnon that North Korea, Iran, Russia are eager to attack the US. She wants the GMD in her state, saying, “better us, than someone else.”

“This doesn’t surprise me because all kinds of liberal Democrats support missile defense,” says Gagnon. “Liberal Democrats support anything the Pentagon has to hand out because it’s the only money in town. It’s a major way to bring money to any states.”

While many believed President Obama would cut missile defense when he entered office in 2008, Gagnon says he’s “expanded it.”

“He raised more money from the military-industrial complex than John McCain did during the 2008 Presidential election,” he said. Indeed, Obama’s campaign pocketed $870,000 from defense contractors compared to the $640,000 McCain received.

Gagnon says organizing a public and vocal response is a good way to counter any missile defense deployment in one’s state. He is planning for a march this coming fall to the GMD site that potentially may be deployed in Maine.

“Citizens can educate the public about how missile defense is truly an offensive program, a key element in the US first-strike attack planning,” Gagnon explains. “Folks can also talk about the enormous cost of these programs at a time when we need to be building rail systems, solar and wind (systems) to help with the coming reality of climate change. We need to call for the conversion of the military industrial complex.”

John Lasker is a freelance journalist fromColumbus,Ohio.