NRO, Space Command, NASA Tout Common Language Of "Space Supremacy" at Conference: on the increased attention to military use of space, as demonstrated at this year's National Space Symposium.
Teets and U.S. Space Command Commander in Chief Gen. Ed Eberhart were not shy in reiterating the message that the U.S. controls the planet through control of planetary space. Teets updated an earlier saying of former NRO Director Keith Hall by proclaiming that "Afghanistan has reinforced something about space dominance: We have it, we like it, and we're going to keep it."
Civilian interests under NASA are bowing to the new realities of the military setting the agenda. NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe revealed that the agency's top budget priority for fiscal 2003 will be to spend close to $1 billion in nuclear propulsion, exploring both radioisotope thermal generators such as those used for Cassini, as well as possible mini-reactors for deep-space missions. O'Keefe, a former Navy secretary and Pentagon comptroller, also reiterated how well NASA had served the Pentagon in providing imagery for the Afghan war, such as SeaWiFS and Terra spacecraft images provided to the Navy. O'Keefe said that NASA was looking forward to providing agency resources for the "war on terror."