Documentary for Dinner: Pax Americana and the Weaponization of Space (2009)

Pax Americana and the Weaponization of Space looks at the possible consequences of the American strategy of total military domination in space.

I have to take issue with how much emphasis is put on satellites in this documentary (and many others). Aside from weather observation, GPS and television broadcasting - all of which have feasible terrestrial alternatives - they are not particularly essential. Most global communications are carried by sub-marine fibre-optic loops. An illustrated "worst case" scenario seems to imply that GPS satellites are the only carriers of atomic clocks in the world and their failure would eventually mean the de-synchronization of the entire Internet and financial networks (including their carriers, like Datapac). This betrays a fundamental lack of understanding of Internet architecture, global timekeeping projects and the Network Time Protocol in particular. The thought that the "end of satellites" would render your mobile phone useless, a device that relies mostly on terrestrial microwave transmission and fibre optics is laughable when only a trans-continental call stands a very remote chance of being routed through space.


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