The Defense Intelligence Agency director recently told a Senate committee the agency believes China is developing a space weapon program that can be used against satellites worldwide.
Army Lt. Gen. Ronald Burgess presented the agency’s worldwide threats report report to the Senate Armed Services Committee last week detailing China’s anti-satellite missiles and cyber warfare capabilities, the Washington Free Beacon reports.
Burgess said China is developing missiles and electronic jammers that are capable of damaging space assets.
Burgess said China recently tested a direct ascent anti-satellite weapon missile in 2007, destroying China’s own weather satellite.
DIA analysts indicated that it would take only about two dozen ASAT missile attacks from China to cause serious damage to U.S. military operations.
DIA found China spent $183 billion on military-related goods and services in 2011.
Burgess said China is “building a modern military capable of defending its self-proclaimed ‘core interests’ of protecting territorial integrity, sovereignty, and national unity.”
Burgess also reported that China will launch its Beidou GPS system this year for regional users and will be globally available by 2020.
This GPS system will enable China to be less reliant on the U.S.’ satellite navigation networks, currently the largest in the world.
Burgess reported that Russia is also developing space technologies that can interfere or even disable U.S. satellites used for navigation, communications and intelligence.