Legal means of preventing war in the Outer Space

By Mihai-Claudiu Dragomirescu for the Space Law Resource.


From a geopolitical point of view, space, any space, not just outer space, has military potential. As space law professors Francis Lyall and Paul Larsen note, following Sun Tzu’s wisdom, there are types of terrain which give great advantages in a battle. High terrain is one of them[1]. If the famous Chinese general had lived until today, he would have considered outer space as an incredibly profitable military position. I have to add the teaching of one famous Japanese swordsman: “You must look down on the enemy, and take up your attitude on slightly higher places”.

As one the main driving force of the space race had been the ongoing cold war and the great competition between the United States and the Soviet Union, it is indeed fortunate that in the matter of space, the feud somehow transformed into an exploration race instead of an arms race[3]. The Space Treaties have brought a bit of hope, the space powers choosing to cooperate a bit, regarding military issues in outer space.

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