It may be assumed that Chairman Turner’s expressed concern was politics in action due to a number of reasons. The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 hearing is usually referred to as the military budget, but in fact, it was somewhat more complicated – not only defense spending but also a lot of political chapters were included in the document.
This hearing allowed taking the first steps towards implementing the idea of forming the US Space Forces and intelligence as a separate branch of the armed forces (Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, 2011). At this stage, space intelligence is in the process of formation (through transferring personnel, property, and competencies from the Air Force). However, this is an important sign that the country is taking its first steps towards the militarization of outer space.
It should be noted that at the approval stage, some points became the subject of fierce disputes among political parties; that is why the author of this paper stated that Chairman Turner’s expressed concern was politics in action. Democrats stressed that due to certain actions, the threshold for using nuclear weapons would decrease, Republicans insisted that America needed a tool to deter other countries (Lowenthal, 2019).
As a result, the first version of the NDAA passed the House of Representatives with a complete split in the party – the Democrats voted in favor, and the Republicans voted against the allocation of responsibilities. However, as a result of the program, many updates were supported as a whole (Lowenthal, 2019). Several concessions were made to the Democrats, mainly related to funding cuts, and a compromise formula was adopted for some positions.
Lowenthal, M. M. (2019). Intelligence: From secrets to policy (8th ed.). CQ Press.
Subcommittee on Strategic Forces. (2011). [H.A.S.C. No. 112–22]. U.S. Government Printing Office. Web.