Yesterday morning I attended a breakfast featuring General Chilton, STRATCOM commander. The one-time astronaut offered this colorful illustration for why definitional issues would make it impossible, in his judgment, to negotiate a workable treaty banning space weapons:
Let’s say you build a craft capable of pulling alongside a satellite, extending a robotic arm, and plucking the satellite’s solar panels off, thereby disabling it. Would you consider that a space weapon? Well, if so, that would mean the U.S. space shuttle is a space weapon.