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Sattelite over New York
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The New York Times, January 17, 1994

"An elaborate satellite system created to help fight a long nuclear war with the Soviet Union is being prepared for launch next month, even as questions mount in Congress about its cost and need, given the diminished prospects for such a conflict.

"Built to act as a space-based brain for nuclear war, the Milstar system would be a global switchboard_a network of satellites to relay military commands long after Washington and the Pentagon were destroyed in battle. It would also be one of the most expensive projects in the Pentagon's history.

"Designed to allow the United States forces to endure a six-month nuclear Armageddon, it has already survived attempts by the Air Force to eliminate it to save money.

"The first Milstar launch is scheduled for February 5th from Cape Kennedy, Florida.

"Although many of Milstar's abilities remain secret, the original goals for the system included the ability to retreat from an orbit of 23,300 miles to a deep-space orbit of 110,000 miles to evade potential attackers; the ability to shield itself from nuclear explosions, including the electromagnetic pulse, a tidal wave of charged electrons that could devastate the nation's electronic circuits; and the ability to foil enemy effort to jam their messages.

"Eric DeRitis, a Lockheed spokesman, said, 'There is no satellite system that can do what's slated for this system.' But Pentagon officials acknowledge that it will take years, and a large-scale war, before they know if Milstar can do what it was designed to do."




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