|11 June 2010. Major General Susan J. Helms, Director of Plans and Policy at the United States Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM), paid a visit to ESPI to exchange views on space security issues with a special focus on transatlantic cooperation.|
General Helms was in Vienna to attend the fifty-third session of the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNCOPUOS) to provide a technical presentation on the Space Situational Awareness (SSA). During her visit at ESPI, she was accompanied by Col John Shaw, Director, Commander’s Action Group, United States Strategic Command, Department of Defense and Lt Col Guinevere Leeder, Space Policy Officer, Space Policy and Strategy, United States Strategic Command, Department of Defense, as well as Jaisha J. Wray, Foreign Affairs Officer at the Office of Missile Defense and Space Policy, U.S. Department of State.
Following an introduction of the Institute’s work by Kai-Uwe Schrogl, ESPI Director, including its Space Security Research Programme, relevant ESPI projects were introduced by the Institute’s staff in order to acquire a better understanding of USSTRATCOM’s positions. Jana Robinson, ESPI President Fellow responsible for the Space Security Research Programme, outlined Europe’s SSA considerations, transparency and confidence-building measures (TCBM) to advance space security, the EU Code of Conduct for Outer Space Activities, and potential red lines in space. Spyros Pagkratis, ESPI Project Manager, introduced the Institute’s latest study on Responsive Space and Max Mutschler, Visiting Researcher from the University of Tübingen, raised the topic of arms control issues in space.
The topics discussed included the role of transatlantic cooperation in addressing the current and emerging space security issues; challenges connected with an independent SSA system in Europe as well as avenues for launching an inter-governmental SSA cooperation; and TCBMs. With regard to TCBMs, the U.S. SSA Sharing Program was cited as a good example of future cooperative arrangements. The discussion concluded with an exchange on the advantages and limitations of declaratory policies on space behavior and the role of strategic ambiguity.
From right: Jaisha J. Wray, Lt Col Guinevere Leeder, Col John Shaw,
photo credit: ESPI