What Do You Leave Behind? Evaluating the Bush Administration’s National Security Space Policy

On October 7, 2006, the George W. Bush Administration unveiled its national space policy. Released nearly five and a half years after taking office, the new policy validates the proposition that presidential decisions on matters of cosmic security are a microcosm of the strengths and weaknesses of the Administration that drafted them.

The Bush space policy makes a number of long-overdue changes that provide useful guidance for U.S. vital national interests in space. The decisive voice necessary to implement realistic policies for safeguarding America and her allies from a complex array of threats and challenges in space remains lacking.

Serious efforts to sustain and enhance U.S. spacepower must now await the arrival of a new presidential administration that has the expertise required to address growing challenges to U.S. and allied interests. Bolder defense and diplomatic initiatives undertaken by the next administration and future Congresses can create new options for the future.

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