Strategic Vacuum May Hamper Space Policy

The fact that the United States does not have “a grand strategy,” and hasn’t had one for more than 20 years, is “going to affect” how the new National Space Policy is implemented, said John Sheldon, an Air University professor, Wednesday. “I think ultimately, [the implementation of] any space policy, regardless of which administration, will founder on the rocks of a lack of a US grand strategy,” Sheldon told attendees at the George C. Marshall Institute-sponsored space policy discussion in Washington, D.C. (see above). Sheldon underscored that a grand strategy requires not only understanding of American aims, but “prioritizes what we want to do in the world, and how we’re going to do it.” He said during the Cold War this grand strategy “was called containment” and “it had bipartisan support.” The danger posed by Al Qaeda today “is not the existential threat the Soviet Union posed,” he asserted.