perhaps performing disaster prevention and weather functions as well as reconnaissance, and do not direct weapons, it might be possible to deploy such a system within the current Japanese policy framework. Further, Defense Task Force members observed during meetings in Japan in November 1994 that there appears to be strong and fairly broad support for such a system. Finally, in contrast to theater missile defense, where much of the Japanese procurement could go toward buying or licensing American equipment, an indigenous reconnaissance satellite system could advance Japan’s security goals while providing a bigger boost for industry. Security concerns could justify such a system being procured domestically, in contrast to NTT (Nippon Telephone and Telegraph) and other commercial satellite procurements, which now must be open to international competition as a result of U.S.-Japan trade negotiations.

DoD has singled out control of the use of space as one of five key U.S. war fighting needs for the future.33 Maintaining a strong, internationally competitive U.S. space industrial base will be necessary to meet this critical need.34 In addition to Europe, Russia, and China, Japan’s future capabilities in space and underlying technologies have the potential to affect U.S. interests in this area.


DoD, Defense Science and Technology Strategy, op. cit., pp. 6-7.


Vice President’s Space Policy Advisory Board, The Future of the U.S. Space Industrial Base, 1992.

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