POLITICS

China is progressing and represents a pacing challenge for us: US Space Force chief

A top official from the US Space Force, on Wednesday, acknowledged that China is progressing very fast in the field of space technology and added the pace poses a threat for the United States. According to a report by news agency Sputnik, US Space Force Chief of Space Operations General John Raymond said that both the US and China are progressing at a rapid pace in space but added the US is facing a grave threat from its “pace”.


“I think they both are developing capabilities for their own use,” Sputnik quoted Raymond as saying on Wednesday.


“I think what’s different is that Beijing has gone very, very fast and the economic engine that they have has allowed them to go at a speed that is concerning and I think that’s why I would consider them our pacing challenge,” he added.


Notably, the US had formed the United States, Space Force, in 2019 to counter any threat from China, Russia and other nations in the outerspace. It is the space service branch of the U.S. Armed Forces, one of the eight U.S. uniformed services, and the world’s first and currently only independent space force. Currently, John William “Jay” Raymond is serving as its first chief of space operations.


“China and Russia demonstrated by their actions that they are developing capabilities to deny us our access to space and the advantages that it provides,” Sputnik quoted Raymond as saying.


China Space operations progressing tremendously: Austin


Earlier in November last year, the Secretary of Defence, Lloyd Austin said that he believes China is a pacing challenge for the US Defense Department. Although China is developing capabilities that could potentially threaten the security and stability of neighbouring nations in the region and globally, the department views the nation as a “pacing challenge” not a “pacing threat”, he said.


“Competition does not necessarily have to mean conflict and we’re not chasing conflict. We’d like nothing more than to be able to deter any conflict or miscalculation,” he added. 


It is worth mentioning Bejing’s space program has advanced tremendously since its first crewed mission in 2003.


“In a report last February, the US found that China and Russia have embarked on major efforts to develop technologies that could allow them to disrupt or destroy American and allied satellites in a crisis or conflict,” Austin noted.


With inputs from AP


Image: AP/Twitter/@JohnRay69037288

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