Russian Space Chief Warns Elon Musk’s Starlink Satellite Network Could Hijack Cruise Missiles

Director of the Russian space agency Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, has warned that the Starlink space program being pursued by Elon Musk’s SpaceX could pose a threat to Russian security. 

This was in the context of the U.S. government has provided SpaceX with $900 million dollars for Starlink so far, with subsidies expected to reach approximately $20 billion under the next budget. 

Rogozin highlighted regarding the program: “The question arises: Why does the U.S. government need this? Because this kind of spacecraft does not only distribute internet, but can become a tool for controlling cruise missiles, recalibrating their flight tasks mid-flight, controlling special forces, or an agent network.” 

He further stressed regarding Starlink’s potential to serve as a medium for Western propaganda broadcasts that the internet it delivered may have “purely political and, most likely, anti-Russian content.” 

This follows the introduction of legislation by Russian lawmakers late in 2020 prohibiting Starlink's operations in the country and thus ensuring that internet traffic in the country would be handled through Russia-based telecoms operators.

The U.S. Military renewed its focus on space warfare from the late 2010s and created a new branch, the Space Force, in December 2019. Among other possibilities, the potential for a space-based anti-missile system has repeatedly been raised. 

Questions have previously been raised regarding how Musk’s ventures support Washington's policy objectives, including regarding Tesla cars’ possible use for spying in China and their ban from military bases, and the use of SpaceX technologies to support U.S. Air Force logistics and deliver personnel and supplies more rapidly. 

Russia has invested in substantial anti-satellite weapons to provide options against new Western assets, including MiG-31 Foxhound jets with anti-satellite missiles and S-500 mobile missile systems.

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