How to keep outer space weapons-free

Jessica West Current Publication, Featured, Ploughshares Monitor, Space Security

The history of arms control in outer space reads like a success story. Outer space is one of the few domains of human activity in which the focus has been on prevention. Although military satellites that provide communications, remote sensing, navigation, and timing services once dominated space and continue to provide essential military services, their operations have long been considered peaceful. Those of us working in space security say that space is “militarized but not weaponized.”

The AI arms race: The Cold War mindset returns

Branka Marijan Conventional Weapons, Emerging Technologies, Featured

Concerns about an artificial-intelligence (AI) arms race between advanced militaries have been raised by many experts and analysts, including SpaceX founder Elon Musk and United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres. Scientists and engineers are also becoming increasingly vocal in discussions on the weaponization of AI, urging governments to develop regulations to prohibit certain applications of AI in weapons technology. But they …

The case for the Petrov rule

Branka Marijan Conventional Weapons, Emerging Technologies, Europe, Featured

On September 26, 1983, Stanislav Petrov, a 44-year-old lieutenant-colonel in the Soviet Air Defence Forces, made a critical decision (Chan 2017). Petrov was on duty at Serpukhov-15, a control centre outside Moscow that monitored the Soviet Union’s Oko early-warning satellite system, which identified ballistic missile launches, mainly by the United States. The Soviet Union/Russia used these satellites until 2015. Petrov …

A Violent Peace

Tasneem Jamal

Author Paul Rogers The Ploughshares Monitor September 2001 Volume 22 Issue 3 Paul Rogers is Professor of Peace Studies at Bradford University in the United Kingdom. This article is an excerpt from his book, Losing Control: Global Security in the Twenty-first Century. The Cold War was immensely wasteful of human and material resources, especially when compared with the problems of poverty and …