General Introduction

1. Outer Space Technology Transfer: The Present Dilemma

      The right of any State to develop outer space technologies, be they launching capabilities, orbiting satellites, planetary probes, or ground-based equipment, is, in principle, unquestionable. In practice, however, problems arise when technology development approaches the very fine line between civil and military application, largely because most the technologies can be used for dual military and civil purposes. This dichotomy has raised a series of political, military, and other concerns which affect the transfer of outer space technologies in different ways, and particularly between established and emerging space-competent States. Accordingly, for many years several States have sought ways and means to curb the transfer of specific dual-use outer space technologies, particularly launcher technology, while still allowing some transfer of these technologies for civil use.

      However, controlling outer space technologies has never been an easy task. It has become increasing complex, not least because of the fundamental changes in international relations which have and continue to occur in the 1990s. Indeed, the nature and potential use of outer space and related technologies are such that, collectively or individually, States are often faced with the dilemma of having to choose between what could be an illegal transfer and permissive; between what could be a genuine civil use application at a certain point in time--but could be used for military purposes in another--and applications which are overtly or implicitly military in character. For example, the development of space weapons for offensive uses can be seen as a threat to international security and peace, despite the fact that they may, in actual fact, be components of defensive or deterrent strategies. Similarly, while the development of space launcher capability is not perceived as such a threat, access to this technology--because it could contribute to the acquisition of ballistic missiles--is often considered as detrimental to regional and/or global stability.

      A further factor is the changing collective perception of what constitutes military space. For example, the development of military-grade satellite technologies is often perceived as the acquisition of military technologies because, inter alia, military-grade satellite technologies have been traditionally used by some States to support their military doctrines. At present, international market access to military-grade satellite data is becoming more common and new civil and security-related applications emerging. Joint manufacturing ventures are also on the increase since they are now considered politically attainable, militarily desirable, and economically viable. Moreover, military outer space activities--whether space-based or not--are also used within the framework of United Nations Peace Operations (UNPOs), or as part of the security strategies of regional military alliances. Thus, the question of which specific aspects of outer space technology transfer could constitute a threat to international security acquires greater relevance. To answer this and related questions, it is necessary to consider complex fundamental issues, evaluate the political, military, technological, and economic ramifications of this matter, and assess the purposes and situations for which the transfer of outer space technologies are intended.

      Nevertheless, the development of outer space technologies continues in a quagmire of conflicting interests and technology transfer control rationales. First, there are political-military considerations where a State's decision to develop military outer space or related applications can be assessed not only as a function of perceived levels of threat to its security, but also as a need to respond to or leap ahead of potential technological innovations. Second, are the fundamental conceptual differences in appreciation among States of the right to possess different weapons and weapons systems for defensive or offensive purposes. Has a State which possesses military space technologies the right to restrain another from obtaining such capabilities? This is not a question limited to the dual-use issue. It has been at the heart of the haves/have nots debate in all the non-proliferation talks (nuclear, chemical, and biological issues and, to some extent, certain conventional weapons as well) for decades. Third, there are the economic implications, whose impact is perhaps the least well-known and debated of all. These economic implications include reluctance on the part of some States and/or organizations to promote increased competition in outer space manufacture. Concomitantly, the very competitive space industry exercises a measure of control on technology transfers via its industrial secrecy policies and market advantage strategies.

      In the midst of these and other interests the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies is caught between selective control regimes on the one hand and the absence of a universal agreement--of mutual interest--on the other. Dual-use technology transfers do not take place in a vacuum. Presently, they are affected by the aftermath of the end of the Cold War and the break-up of the Soviet Union, and the search for a new world order. Additionally, since major nuclear and chemical disarmament efforts are underway, non-proliferation will receive increased attention in future security debates--notably with respect to the strengthening of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention, new nuclear- and delivery systems-related (e.g., missiles and other rockets) agreements. The new era has required a reassessment of national priorities related to international security which affects the way global and regional geopolitical policies are conceived. Such a reassessment has led to a greater interest in civil-related issues, an approach which is more amenable to cope with development and environmental problems.

      While this new political direction may eventually stimulate a constructive turn in international relations, there is still an unanswered question: how can international security and peace in both the short and the long term be ensured? Central to this concern is the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies in general, and of delivery-vehicles in particular. For the time being, discussions on dual-use outer space technologies lack creativity; political will to promote diplomatic initiatives is also lacking. This situation does not necessarily further international security, nor does it foster co-operation in the civil use of dual-use outer space applications.

2. Thesis Rationale and Hypothesis

      It is in the specific context of the impact on international security caused by the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies that the rationale of the present thesis is argued. Currently, the relationship between the suppliers and the recipients of these technologies is based on selective control regimes which, in many instances, give rise to conflicting political situations. In the main, control regimes have been established to curb the development of ballistic missiles, military reconnaissance satellites, and other weapons and weapon systems. The argument could also be made, however, that economic considerations have also stimulated these control regimes. Polemics aside, the problems caused by these regimes are such that there is an urgent need to rethink their mode of implementation, added to which is the fact that control regimes have also hindered, both directly and indirectly, the development of certain civil-oriented space programmes.

      The hypothesis of this document is that the interests of both suppliers and recipients in the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies can best be served not through selective control regimes but through joint co-operative measures, because it is the most efficient way to control civil-use of outer space technologies, while at the same time ensuring their transfers. In order to prove this hypothesis, this document will therefore:

      appraise the specific, progressive steps required to achieve co-operation between suppliers and recipients of space technologies;

      assess the measures that would offer more transparency in technology transfer and thus lead to greater predictability of the end-use; and

      examine measures which could build-up confidence and security among States in so far as outer space technologies are concerned.

      In developing this rationale, this thesis does not undertake a detailed analysis of all outer space and related technology transfers, since it would be a tedious exercise which falls outside the scope of this paper's main objective. Rather, the discussion is limited to an appraisal of the relationship between technology-supplier States--i.e., those which reached competence in outer space activities between the 1950s and the 1970s--and potential recipient States--which are currently developing their first generation of indigenous space launchers, satellites, and/or ground stations. The debate in this document starts in the dawn of the space age and ends in the year 2000.

3. Methodology and Proposed Solutions

      It is clear that the objectives set forth above are not easy to reach. After all, the dual-use debate is not new and its complexities are also quite well known. It is therefore necessary to first clarify what outer space technologies actually are and what their dual use may entail. Understanding the technical intricacies is essential: for instance, are space launchers ballistic missiles? Unfortunately, the importance of the answer to this question is not always appreciated, for in it lies some of the fundamental reasons for controlling access to rocket technologies. Equally necessary is a survey as to which countries are most likely to export or import outer space technologies. Such an exercise would also be valuable in identifying countries which have assigned their outer space technologies to the military sector, since they are often the strongest proponents of control regimes related to technology transfer.

      In view of the need to evaluate and clarify the political and strategic implications of access to outer space technologies on international security, this thesis highlights the consequences that the dual use of outer space technologies can have on (a) the spread of weapons technologies and (b) the military use of space assets. More specifically, it appraises and clarifies some of the ramifications which are often discussed in the context of the non-proliferation debate. It also pays particular attention to launching vehicles capable of carrying nuclear or other payloads of mass destruction and the space component of such issues as Earth-orbit satellites versus space probes. Reconnaissance satellites are especially pertinent since their role in the next century has yet to be fully assessed and appreciated.

      At the same time, the focus of this thesis is an examination of several existing and future technology transfer control regimes, although the detail is narrowed to more space-related relevant instruments and arrangements. First, it is important to learn more about technology transfer issues and the role of national legislation. For example, central to the control regime debate is the discussion on the evolution, or lack, of national legislation covering dual-use outer space technologies, as well as a discussion on their orientation and scope. Which countries have developed or are developing legislative measures in this area? Are legislation on control regimes legally sound and implementable in practice, and to what extent? Second, at a time of fundamental change in the nature and order of international relations, the wisdom of ad hoc control regimes must not escape scrutiny. Although experts are very much aware of these problems, the future of control regimes remains uncertain, so what are their potential implications for international security? Hence, a reassessment of the problems surrounding existing control regimes must be made - both in terms of their foreseeable improvement and/or a possible new universal multilateral agreement, and within the context of an uncontrolled regime.

      This further argues the need for new international mechanisms to safeguard the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies, while not fuelling proliferation opportunities for weapon systems. This argument is not just ideological thinking. It could constitute the basis of a policy that could be implemented if certain specific initiatives are taken. To build confidence between suppliers and recipients of outer space technologies, adhesion to bilateral agreements on space technologies and activities, arms limitation agreements on weapons of mass destruction, and other measures would offer increased transparency in the development of outer space activities as well as higher levels of predictability. Of course, the roles of both suppliers and recipient States in unilateral, reciprocal measures would have to be carefully evaluated. Concession issues would need to be given the highest priority in order to improve predictability and the creation of crisis management mechanisms.

      Multilaterally, there should also be agreement to establish a dialogue mechanism between suppliers and recipients, to enable mutual political objectives to be complemented by compliance and enforcement procedures. Central to the debate would be a discussion of fundamental, practical questions. For example: is it appropriate to undertake multilateral negotiations? If so, in what form and at what type of forum should they take place? Whether a World Space Organization (WSO) could solve outer space technology transfer problems also finds legitimacy in this context.

      However, scrutinizing ways of creating new relationships between suppliers and recipients in the transfer of dual-use outer-space technologies can easily be a zero-sum-game endeavour. The challenge is to instigate impartial and innovative thinking. Moves favouring co-operation simply for the sake of ensuring the transfer of dual-use technologies are not the answer here! Moreover, while international organizations have their role, they are not a panacea, as the comprehensive test ban treaty discussions have shown. The costly, complex exercise that led to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) should not be taken as a precedent.

      In conclusion, the question of whether there should be a better restructuring of outer space technology transfer would now appear to be irrelevant without a better understanding of the present relationship among States on the vital outer space sector of the security debate. The quest for improved relationships in respect of technology transfer and dual use must first start with an assessment of the political, military, technical, and economic implications of outer space technologies. Any such assessment must therefore consider the relevance that access to these technologies has for different geopolitical situations. Only by co-operation can the supplier/recipient relationship be established in a sound, durable manner. However, any such co-operation must be reinforced by agreements to ensure transparency and predictability on issues which directly affect the security and development of individual States or groups of States.

      The right of any State to develop outer space technologies is, in principle, unquestionable. In practice, problems arise when technology development approaches the very fine line between civil and military application, largely because most the technologies can be used for dual military and civil purposes. This dichotomy has raised a series of political, military, and other concerns which affect the transfer of outer space technologies, and particularly between established and emerging space-competent States. Accordingly, several States have sought means to curb the transfer of specific dual-use outer space technologies, particularly launcher technology, while allowing some transfer of these technologies for civil use. This document argues that the interests of both suppliers and recipients States can best be served not through selective control regimes but through joint co-operative measures, because it is the most efficient way to control civil-use of outer space technologies, while at the same time ensuring their transfers.

Part I
Dual-Use Outer Space Technologies: The Terminology

      The meaning and scope of certain terms, many of which are used interchangeably to describe specific objects and behaviours in the transfer of dual-use technologies can confuse the experienced reader just as much as the novice. Mutual understanding of these terms is therefore crucial in understanding the issues related to this paper. The purpose of Part I is therefore to define the terminology to be used below. Among the many terms with multiple meanings are technology transfer, dual use, outer space (as distinct from air space), ballistic missile, delivery vehicle, space launcher and sounding rocket.

      There is also a need to explore the latest developments in capabilities and the identification of different categories of competence. The question of who does what in outer space will accordingly be addressed at some length. A description of what are called Established Space-Competent (EtSC) States is also appropriate, not only because of these countries' capability to manufacture space equipment, but also because of their capacity to supply outer space technology to the international market. 1 

      However, it is not enough to describe the EtSC States alone. Hence, the Emerging Space-Competent (EmSC) States, known as technology-recipient States, are also identified. The relationships, routes, and progress of EmSC States in their quest for outer space capability do not necessarily resemble those of EtSC States, although the past, present, and prospective growth of their national space programmes are unquestionably interwoven. In many instances such progress is an essential factor in the technology transfer debate. This is particularly true of the actual and potential military capabilities of EmSC States.

1. Definition of Terms

      The transfer of dual-use outer space technology is such a vast subject that an entire thesis could be devoted to its terminology alone. However, for obvious reasons, the present paper will focus on the meaning of technology transfer and dual use, describe how these terms are applied in the context of outer space, and examine how dual use can be effectively identified among different applications.

A. Technology Transfer

      The term "technology transfer" may be used in a variety of circumstances because there is little agreement among experts on its actual meaning. While some experts contend that a clear-cut meaning can be identified, at least one other school of thought argues that the term "technology transfer" is meaningless. There may be some justification for the latter argument since technology transfer could be used, in a general sense, to imply the movement of technology from a supplier to a recipient. This may seem to be an oversimplification, but it is actually quite a complex statement. First, those involved in transfer can be individuals, companies, States, or any other type of enterprise. This complicates the issue in that "technology transfer" defines neither the supplier nor the recipient, thus creating an "identity" problem when the issue of legal responsibility has to be addressed.

      A further complication is the fact that the word "technology" is itself vague. Is it an abstract concept or can it be identified as a tangible asset? The answer is not necessarily readily evident. A "grey area" between the two concepts would provide a greater degree of flexibility in definition according to the circumstances at stake. For instance, a transfer could involve complete or selective movement of know-how regarding a given system, manufacturing equipment, finished product, or service (see Diagram I.1.A). As the Diagram illustrates, technology transfer can also affect a prospective recipient's increased capability to become autonomous and, therefore, also become, in its turn, a supplier in the future. However, it is also important to note that mere movement of goods or services may not necessarily enable the recipient to access the technology. For instance, a recipient may engage in technology transfer but unable to absorb it because of insufficient scientific, human, financial, or other fundamental technological resources. Thus, "technology transfer" would not apply in such a case--although it could be argued that an attempt to transfer technology may have been made. Even if there is no difficulty in accepting this assumption, there will still be a problem in regard to ability to identify and distinguish the movement of technology and assets from non-transfer-related events.


Diagram I.1.A: Definition of Technology Transfer

      To reach a clear definition of technology transfer, three other issues must be addressed: (1) the conditions in which it can occur; (2) the ability the supplier/recipient to provide/absorb transferred assets so as to permit their coherent use; and (3) the fundamental objectives behind the decision the supplier/recipient to transfer/acquire the technology. In the first and second instances, it is difficult to estimate the transfer conditions because the flow of technology between a supplier and a recipient may not be easily identifiable. For example, in a joint-venture, the R&D of a given system may depend not only on a supplier's input but also--and to varying degrees--on that of a potential recipient. In such an example, the concept of sharing technology R&D may also be added to the definition as part and parcel of the technology transfer process.

      Additionally, input should not be characterized only in such terms of abstract participation as the provision of knowledge, but also in terms of human, financial, and other investment resources - which adds to the difficulty of identifying technology transfers. In the third instance, the decision to acquire technology--as distinct to undertaking indigenous R&D--is often closely linked to a need to decrease programme costs and development time, while at the same time widening the scope of potential applications. 2 

      Therefore, it seems that, to be pertinent, a working definition of "technology transfer" for the purpose of this paper has to take three factors into consideration - namely:

(a) the existence of asset movement, including knowledge and services, between two or more protagonists;

(b) the possibility that a recipient may employ the transferred assets either to produce finished products or to provide services without the assistance of the original supplier; and

(c) the ability of a recipient to have access to a given technology in a manner that would save time, financial investment, and other resources.

      In conclusion, for the purpose of the present discussion, the term "technology transfer" is neither meaningless nor vague. On the contrary, it carries a strategic vision and responds to specific criteria.

B. Outer Space and Dual-Use Technologies

      In the light of the above definition, the transfer of outer space technologies would naturally refer to the movement of outer space assets, applications, and services between suppliers and recipients. However, outer space is an environment and it is not particularly obvious, a priori, how the outer space environment fundamentally relates to technology transfer. There is no precise, universally agreed, legal, technical, or political definition of the boundaries separating outer space from air space or from deep space, nor is there any agreement in diplomatic and/or scientific quarters of the term "outer space" itself. 3  One of the major obstacles in defining the boundary between air space and outer space is the difficulty in obtaining agreement on the quantifiable physical parameters dividing the two environments. Moreover, this boundary is not necessarily stable and may, at some point in time, be affected by atmospheric changes and/or physical phenomena. However, for the purpose of the present discussion, a working definition of outer space could be as follows: 4 

[o]uter space is all of the space surrounding the Earth where objects can move in at least one full orbit around the Earth without artificial propulsion systems according to the laws of celestial mechanics, without being prevented from doing so by the frictional resistance of the Earth's atmosphere. It extends from an altitude above the earth of approximately 100 km upwards.

      Under this working definition, any technologies which contribute directly to applications in such an environment could be considered as outer space technologies: e.g., rocket boosters, satellites and their components, and Earth-based control and tracking systems. Equally, other technologies contributing to these and other outer space applications in a less direct manner could be considered as "related" outer space technologies -- for instance, the technologies of systems and sub-systems which could be used instead of the traditional means of manufacturing and operating space devices. In consequence, the following questions may then be raised: (1) what are dual-use outer space technologies, and (2) how can they be distinguished from single-use technologies? Are operational interactions and technical similarities the only criteria to differentiate dual- from single-use technologies? Or are there other more conceptual and less technical reasons?

      The term dual is used in its generic sense to denote the mathematical number "two". When used in relation to an operative verb such as use, "dual" means more than one employment, nature, or characteristic of a given object or method, or any other word it qualifies. More specifically, in the context of outer space technologies, dual use can be defined as being a usage which has both civil and military employment, whether proven or potential. In a more general sense, dual use also embraces weapon technologies and their systems and sub-systems, in any of their different basing modes: ground-based--fixed or mobile, ship-mounted, air-mounted, and space-based. However, while there are a great variety of weapon-specific systems that could be associated with outer space, it is the non-weapon technology that could be employed for military purposes which is the most difficult to define.

      For example, in rocketry, the line differentiating booster technologies from ballistic missiles is rather fine. It is a core issue in international security debates. Indeed, it is often thought that the possession of the former is a passport to obtaining the latter. However, rocketry technology is only one component of the dual-use debate. It is therefore important to understand the dual-use nature of both artificial satellites 5  and rocket/satellite Earth-based tracking technologies. Here too, the line between civil and military technologies is difficult to draw. One may therefore question how these technologies can be identified and also, equally importantly, how they have been employed in terms of dual use. The discussion which follows is an attempt to illuminate these issues.

C. Space Booster or Ballistic Missile Technologies?

      Different launch vehicles may provide distinct, diverse applications and three major categories of carrier rockets using outer space technologies can be identified: (a) sounding rockets, (b) space launchers, and (c) ballistic missiles. While the first two rockets are essential to the space boosters (or space launching vehicles) used for the exploration of outer space, the BM is propelled into outer space with the intent to use that environment only as a pathway to its final destination back into the Earth's atmosphere--with, however, the exception of an attack on satellites such as Anti-Satellite (ASAT) weapons.

      Sounding rockets are usually employed for scientific studies and provide the capability to conduct endo-atmospheric and, more importantly, exo-atmospheric experiments 6 --the latter providing limited access (a few minutes) to microgravity. 7  These rockets usually have a range less than 1000 km and most have a single solid fuelled-propelled body (see examples in Photos I.1.1 and I.1.2). In most cases, their trajectories are designed in such a way that, via its parachute, the payload returns to the vicinity of the launch pad, thus allowing the payload-bay and its scientific equipment to be recuperated and perhaps reused for other missions.


Photo I.1.1: Example of a Solid-Fuel Graphite Fibre Rocket Motor

Courtesy the US DoD


Photo I.1.2: Example of a Solid-Fuel Motor Test Fire

Courtesy the US DoD

      As may be seen from Photo I.1.3, sounding rockets are intended to carry experimental scientific experiment equipment in their payload-bay or to conduct experiments themselves. Different signals from experiments provide Earth stations with data derived from devices in the payload-bay, such as visual and parametric observation of experiments conducted during the endo-atmospheric and/or exo-atmospheric phases of the flight. This allows scientists in Earth-based stations to have real-time access to the experiments and the possibility of transmitting experiment-related telecommand signals 8  to the vehicle's experimental scientific equipment.


Photo I.1.3: Example of Sounding Rocket Payload Bay

Courtesy of MBB/ERNO Orbital Systems & Launcher Division

      Space launchers are, however, technologically more complex and financially more demanding than sounding rockets. Their technical characteristics and mission functions are also different, because space launchers are exo-atmospheric rockets which can be used to reach low Earth orbits (approximately 150-500 km), high altitudes such as geostationary 9  orbit, and even deep space (over 40,000 km). Thus, there are different types of space launchers for different Earth and transfer orbits. Consequently, launchers designed to reach geostationary and high transfer orbits are more complex to construct than those for low orbits because--assuming the rockets carry equal payloads-- considerably higher thrust power is required. Space lunchers can have different body structures and propulsion fuels: some have a single body while others have three to four stages as well as strap-on boosters. 10  Usually, strap-on boosters are propelled by solid fuel, while the main body of the space launcher uses a combination of solid- and liquid-propelled motors. 11  As shown in Photo I.1.4, liquid-fuel motors are structurally more complex and more cumbersome to operate than solid devices. Only a few States are able to manufacture cryogenic propellant, a special high-performance liquid fuel for liquid boosters. 12 


Photo I.1.4: Example of Liquid-Fuel Motor (Japanese H-2 LE-7 engine)

Courtesy of NASDA

      Mission space launchers--which are sometimes called expandable launchers--are rockets which place satellites and manned vehicles into Earth orbits or launch probes into deep space. They have a greater payload capability than sounding rockets, although their satellites do not always contain scientific study instruments. The difference in mission purpose also reflects a difference in the form and size of the rocket's payload-bay structure (see Photos I.1.5 and I.1.6). In addition, the type of trajectory of space launchers also differ from those of sounding rockets, with the additional particularity that space launchers are not usually intended to return to the Earth: they either burn-up when they re-enter the Earth's atmosphere or remain in outer space as space debris. There are, however, vehicles that carry astronauts into outer space and are designed to have their manned capsulae re-enter the Earth's atmosphere and then be parachuted into the sea or onto the ground as well as the capability to perform regular aircraft-like landings.


Photo I.1.5: Example of Space Launcher Payload-bay-I (Preparation before closing the fairing)

Courtesy of Arianespace


Photo I.1.6: Example of Space Launcher Payload-bay-II (Satellite composite mating on to the launcher)

Courtesy of Arianespace

      Manufacturing technologies for sounding rockets and space launchers are very similar to those used in developing delivery vehicles such as ballistic missiles (BMs), although the use of BMs differs in principle and purpose. For example, sounding rockets (apart from air-launched ones) and space launchers perform a vertical or near vertical launch and are propelled into outer space for a given mission. Some of them execute a V-shape trajectory to re-enter the atmosphere. BMs, on the other hand, are propelled into outer space by a booster rocket (usually also via a vertical or near-vertical launch), after which they make a free-fall descent towards a given target on the ground or at sea, performing a ballistic trajectory to deliver a military payload (see Diagram I.1.B). In other cases, a single missile may have a varying number of smaller vehicles (re-entry vehicles) operating the re-entry of the atmosphere and completing the ballistic trajectory described above.


Diagram I.1.B: Standard Rocket Launch Flight Trajectories, Ranges, & Basing-Modes

      BMs can also use space booster technologies for specific military needs - for example, the re-entry of rockets or their nosecones and control during the re-entry part of the flight or special computers and software for guidance and target-locking purposes. In addition, the structural form of BM payload-bays may be only slightly different from that of the space boosters. Furthermore, their payload-bays are usually located at the upper part of the rocket, although they are designed to carry munition payloads for hit-and-kill (kinetic-encounter), nearby-explosion purposes, and/or radiation effect (see Diagram I.1.C). Depending on the size of the rocket and its type of fuel propulsion, the payload may vary from conventional to mass destruction munitions (e.g., nuclear, chemical, or biological/toxin agents). An example of a BM payload-bay with re-entry vehicles warheads is shown in Photo I.1.7.


Diagram I.1.C: Potential Ballistic Missile Technology Applications

      BMs exist in different versions and basing modes, including fixed ground-based, road/railway mobile, submarine- and air-launched vehicles, some of which have a range of up to 16,000 km, with apogees of up to 12,000 km. 13  In addition, BMs can be either solid or liquid-propelled, the latter being more common in long-range intercontinental missiles. Thus, the components of such rockets are undeniably dual-use in character and the acquisition of space-booster manufacturing capability provides the recipient country or enterprise with the basic technology for developing BMs.

      Photo I.1.7: Example of a Ballistic Missile Payload-bay [image non disponible]

Courtesy of the US DoD

      Configuration of a payload nose cone and three warheads: Multiple Independent Re-entry Vehicles (MIRV) shown with protective nose cone removed.

      The reverse is also true, that is to say that access to BM manufacturing capability provides the recipient country or enterprise with the basic technology for developing space launchers. Moreover, the infrastructure created for outer space applications may also have other military ramifications in the rocketry field. This is especially the case with regard to launch sites, because space booster launching sites can also be used as missile bases - although experience has so far shown that the reverse is often the case when missile or air force bases have been used as launching sites.

D. The Nature of Dual-Use Satellite Technologies

      In general, there are three major categories of artificial orbiting satellites: scientific, application, and test (experimental). Scientific satellites are space-orbiting devices for scientific experiments, as discussed above in connection with sounding rockets, and they carry an array of different measuring devices. Application satellites are designed for meteorological operations, remote-sensing, communications, geodetic measurements, and various other uses in outer space. Test satellites are to confirm technologies for future satellites or for space launchers.

      Similarly to space vehicle technologies, satellite technologies play an important civilian role in the development and life of modern society, providing both real-time services and a platform on which various scientific field experiments can be made. However, the nature of satellites' working environment and the variety of operations it offers also makes satellites attractive for military purposes, not least because while air space is subject to States' national laws and sovereignty, satellites can move around in outer space without any such legal constraints. In addition, they can move around the Earth in different orbital planes (e.g., low Earth orbit, circular semi-synchronous orbit, elliptic semi-synchronous orbit, and geo-synchronous orbit), 14  thus allowing some degree of flexibility in preparing local, regional, and over-the-horizon military contingency plans or campaigns.

      Moreover, satellites are also able to cover large areas and provide data repeatedly. Depending on the technology involved, the data may be for short-term tactical use or long-term analysis of military strategy. Having now been used both directly and indirectly during conflict and in peace, the value of military satellite technology is no longer in doubt. 15 

      Complete satellite systems have been developed as dedicated military devices and an array of satellites for strategic and tactical reconnaissance as well as intelligence data collection now support nuclear and conventional deterrence postures as well as actual military operations. Existing dedicated military technology includes satellites which can emit and receive communications signals that are owned or operated by the armed forces of different countries. Such satellites provide "Communications, Command, Control and Intelligence" (C3I) capability supporting military combat operations. 16  Similarly, meteorological satellites can supply real-time global and local visibility through the visible light and infra-red parts of the image spectrum.

      Data provided by geodetic satellites, for instance, were originally designed to determine the exact size and shape of the Earth's surface and its gravitational field in order to produce highly-detailed maps showing the precise location of cities, towns and villages. Today, geodetic satellites are also used to improve the accuracy of intercontinental ballistic or cruise missiles. 17 

      In addition, navigation satellite technology, which can provide the position of a receiver-point on Earth, is also used to make atmospheric measurements to determine optimal missile trajectories (e.g., water vapour content and wind velocity along a missile's possible trajectory). Navigation satellite data are also used for troop-position determination in and around battlefields and elsewhere. Ocean surveillance satellites are used to locate surface ships and to determine their nature and direction. Such satellites often carry infra-red and microwave radiation detection sensors which can detect submarine missile launchings. There are also specially conceived satellites which carry infra-red devices to monitor the heat of rocket plume to detect BM launches and calculate their range of operation. Thus, early-warning satellites can be used to detect a potential BM first strike. In addition to these detection and identification missions, this technology could also be used , if necessary, to provide missile flight data on weather and other atmospheric conditions and guidance in order to optimize the performance of weapons and weapon systems in retaliatory missions.

      Other reconnaissance satellites of a more general nature are designed for (a) area surveillance and close-look missions; (b) monitoring military radio communications; (c) detecting/jamming missile telemetric data; 18  and (d) monitoring/verifying arms control and disarmament agreements. For example, reconnaissance satellites have been used to detect and/or identify Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) silo bases, as well as other ground-based mobile missiles and their systems. This type of mission includes BMs manufacturing and storage facilities, in addition to the monitoring of naval bases and docked nuclear and other submarines. Electronic intelligence satellites, on the other hand, can hinder an adversary's incoming missile or satellite telemetric signals by jamming.

      However, data provided by certain civil satellites--such as non-dedicated military systems or platforms--have also been used for military purposes, 19  thanks largely to the availability of military-grade data on the civilian market. For instance, the availability of Earth observation data of 10-m resolution on the civil market responds to an ever-increeasing need for highly accurate map-making equipment in urban and environmental planning, but this technology could also provide the necessary equipment to increase the accuracy of weapons and weapon systems. 20  The use of civil satellite data for military purposes is not limited to such examples . It can also be linked, as dedicated military satellites are, to the actual support of real-time battlefield and other operations.

      It is such factors as these, coupled with the continuous technological increase in civil satellites and the changing environment of international security, that cause some experts to question the very definition of the term "dual use" in regard to satellites. They argue that the term has mostly been considered from what is frequently called the traditional unilateral perspective of the military and civil use of outer space technologies. 21  To redefine the term "dual use", a proposal has been made to adopt a different approach referred to as simultaneous multiple use of satellite technologies. This argument is that, in the not so distant future, it will become common (as distinct from ad hoc) practice for civil satellites to perform military missions and military satellites to perform civil functions. Hence dual use will become multiple use. Such a change in terminology, if it were to be widely accepted, would revolutionize the way satellite applications in particular, and space technologies in general, are perceived and employed.

E. Rocket/Satellite Earth-Based Tracking Technologies

      The dual-use nature of space booster and satellite technologies is also a factor in the development of their Earth-based control systems. 22  Space agencies and institutions worldwide possess emission/reception antennae, radars, optical devices and other technical equipment that are used for the tracking and acquisition of launch vehicle and spacecraft telemetry. These systems can receive telemetry from the vehicles and send commands to the spacecraft (see Photo I.1.8), notably to acquire spacecraft velocity and position with respect to the Earth and to provide real-time transmissions of such data to space flight operations facilities during and after the active life of satellites. In addition, these types of antennae are also used to study non-artificial space debris and meteorites.


Photo I.1.8: Example of Telemetry, Tracking, and Command. Antenna for Deep Space Probes

Courtesy of the Japanese Institute of Space and Astronautical Sciences

      Telescopes and radar-interferometry and state-of-the-art technology such as laser systems can also provide the data identifying rocket trajectories and satellite orbits. 23  Figure I.1.1 illustrates an example of active imaging whereby lasers are used to illuminate an object in outer space as an aid to passive equipment such as a telescope. In contrast, Figure I.1.3 shows the kind of image that can be obtained from optical systems on the ground namely, the Hubble Space Telescope in outer space where the satellite's main body and solar panels are clearly identifiable (compare it with Photo I.1.9).


Figure I.1.1: Laser and Telescope Tracking

Courtesy of Philips Laboratory, Albuquerque, USA

      However, given the appropriate specific technology, Telemetry, Telecommand & Tracking (TT&T) antennae can also be used for military purposes. For example, fixed ground-based and ship-mounted radars employed to track space debris are also utilized as dedicated or non-dedicated military systems to provide (a) early-warning of ballistic missiles and (b) surveillance of other objects crossing the radar's range. Indeed, in addition to providing early-warning of BM launches, military systems are also designed to track satellites and space debris, as well as BMs re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere. This capability enables objects and missiles to be distinguished in flight. Accordingly, dedicated military systems are used to maintain a database of objects in Earth orbit, the number and position of which are constantly changing.

      Fixed ground-based and ship-mounted antennae used for the TT&T of satellites are also employed for the reception of telemetric data of ballistic missile tests. Other less weapon-related employments of this kind of equipment include the use of an array of antennae for dedicated military communications purposes.

      Nevertheless, the acquisition of all or any of the above-mentioned technologies can be as time-consuming and costly as it is attractive, and the difficulties commensurate to the potential benefits envisaged. It is for these and other reasons that States which are active in outer space activities do not possess or indeed have access to every feasible type of application--a matter which is discussed in the following chapter.


Figure I.1.2: Hubble Telescope as seen from AMOS

Courtesy of Philips Laboratory, Albuquerque, USA

The Hubble Bug, as imaged by the Philips Lab at the Air Force Maui Optical Station at Mount Haleakala, Hawaii.


Photo I.1.9: Hubble Telescope as seen from the Space Shuttle Discovery (1997)

Courtesy of NASA

2. The Development of Outer Space and Related Capabilities

      Identifying actual, emerging, and potential outer-space competency among States is more difficult than it might seem. Moreover, any attempt to find precise, widely acceptable definitions of such terms as "Established Space-Competent State" and "Emerging Space-Competent State" would call for an in-depth analysis and comparison of several unequal parameters which are inappropriate to the present paper. 24  However, there are some parameters which, when considered individually or together, can identify some measure of outer-space competence. Therefore, for the purpose of the present discussion competence in manufacturing qualified outer space equipment 25  can be taken as a dividing line to distinguish the haves from the have nots in respect of three major infrastructure capabilities: the capability to design and manufacture (a) rocketry, (b) orbiting satellites or probes, and (c) launching and tracking site installations. In all of these areas, manufacturing infrastructure capabilities include the technologies used for launching and orbiting devices, and Tracking, Telemetry, and Control (TT&C) plus the maintenance of adequate services and a sustained commitment to the exploitation of these capabilities and services, and the training of personnel.

      It should be noted from the outset that only a few countries have so far demonstrated their outer-space competence. A non-exhaustive list of such EtSC States inevitably includes the USA, the former Soviet Union (now the Russian Federation), the European Space Agency (ESA) as an organization in its own right as well as most of its individual Member States, and Canada. However, a long, well-established reputation in the international commercial market should not be considered as sine qua non for inclusion EtSC State list, and therefore other countries which have more recently entered that market, such as Australia, China, and Japan, should also be added to such a list.

      States can be classified into four categories of access to outer space technologies with respect to the development and sophistication of their space programmes. Currently, as leaders in space competence, the USA and the Russian Federation belong to what could be defined as Category I. In Category II, we find States which manufacture outer space equipment without, however, having the same degree of outer-space activity as the Americans and the Russians. Without being exhaustive, China, Japan, and various European countries (individually or collectively within the framework of ESA) can be listed in this category.

      Then come the States in Category III. These are countries which are still acquiring basic, qualified outer space technologies, some with the aim of joining the ranks of EtSC States and indeed becoming suppliers of technologies and services before the end of the century. Argentina, Brazil, India, Israel, and Pakistan can be identified as belonging to Category III and, to a lesser extent, other States such as South Africa could also be included as discussed below. Category IV of outer space competence covers States, such as Indonesia and South Korea, which have announced their intention to initiate outer space activity sometime in the future. Also assignable to this Category States which have no intention of manufacturing systems or sub-systems, but wish to access derivative services.

      These four categories of outer-space competence should be regarded as working guides for a better understanding of the various issues at stake in the transfer of outer space technologies. To illustrate this point, the discussion which follows will focus on the evolution and present state of development of different outer space programmes and their dual-use civil/military character. In many instances, the relationship between the civil and military employment of the technologies is obscure. Thus, the discussion will illustrate why Category I and II EtSC States are presently technology supplier States and why and how EmSC States have become technology-recipient States.

A. Established Space-Competent States: Technology Supplier States

1. Reaching Outer Space

      The first country to put its research and development of outer space and related activities into actual practice was the former Soviet Union, by launching the first intercontinental ballistic vehicle in 1956. 26  Subsequently, the Soviets also put Sputnik-1 rocket 1 into orbit in 1957 and a vehicle carrying Lieutenant Yuri Gagarinon on 12 April 1961, making him the first man to travel in outer space. Not surprisingly, it is reported that Soviet space-launching vehicles were developed from ballistic missiles or ballistic missile programmes. 27  Table 1.1 lists some of the the Soviet-Russian BM missiles which are closely linked to space-launcher development, while Table I.1.2 summarizes some of the technical characteristics of major Soviet-Russian space launchers. A careful look at both these tables reveals a number of similarities between other missiles and space boosters.

      The Sputnik space booster which first orbited on 4 October 1957 is said to have been converted from the SS-6 Sapwood BM, which had itself been successfully test launched on 3 August of the same year. 28  Among such launchers still in operation in the mid to late 1990s was the Lance series (e.g., Molnya and Kosmos have largely derived from the SS-5), which is propelled with liquid-fuel motors and usually employed for low- to mid-altitude orbits. 29  The three-stage Tsyklon space launcher is another operational space launcher which is said to derive from the SS-9 and SS-18 families. 30  SS-9 BMs have been reported as being the booster for the FOBS (Fractional Orbital Bombardment System) which, in the event of hostilities, could deliver warheads against the United States on a south polar orbit. 31  There are few Soviet-built non-military-derived space launchers and in fact the only such vehicles that are still operational derive from the heavy-lift Proton rocket family. 32  Proton rockets, in particular the D-1-e version, were the cornerstone of Soviet geostationary launches and still are for the Russian Federation. In addition to the Proton, the Zenit and the Energiya may also have their origins in designs for civil rocketry. Their development, however, is believed to have received much support from the military. In the beginning, Zenit was intended to be both a satellite launcher and a strap-on booster for the Energiya system.


Photo I.2.1: SCUD-1B Missile (Soviet-Russian)

Courtesy of the US DoD

      The new relationship between Russia and the USA in strategic matters has stimulated the recycling of certain major missiles and their launching modes. For example, some decommissioned versions of BMs, or parts thereof, are being redesigned for use in sounding rocket campaigns or satellite launching. One initiative is the development of a mobile booster for low-mass launches using the Soviet SS-20 missile. 33  In addition, the US/Soviet START I and II agreements include provision for the use of ICBMs and SLBMs for civil launches. In this connection Russia has shown particular interest in using SS-18, SS-19, SS-24, and SS-25 ICBMs as heavy-lift vehicles. A modified SS-19 ICBM was reportedly tested for its commercial applications potential on 20 December 1991. 34  The first so-called "demonstration flight" of a converted rocket carrying a satellite was reportedly made on 23 March 1993. 35  More recently, a number of proposals have included the use of submarine-launched BMs as space boosters (e.g., SS-N-8 "Swafly" launched from a Delta-1 submarine, the SS-N-18 "Stingray" launched from the Delta-3 class submarine, and the SS-N-20 "Sturgeon" and SS-N-25 "Skiff" launched from the Delta-4 class submarine). 36 

      Another configuration, the "Volna" space launcher, was derived from the SS-N-18 missile and was intended to be commercialised in 1990s. 37  The "Shtil" rocket family (1, 2, and 3) derives from the SS-N-23 missile and was also intended to be commercially available as of 1995 38  By the mid-to-late 1990s, over 200 "Pioneer" rockets (SS-20) and close to 60 "Start" (SS-25) have reportedly been launched, some of them unsuccessfully. 39 

      In regard to air-launched missiles, the SS-24 "Scalpel" missile technology is said to be the basis of a new space launcher called "Space Clipper", which will be launched from a Russian An-124SC Ruslan aircraft. 40  Demonstration flights of some of these new space-launch vehicles - the SS-N-20 "Sturgeon" code-named Surf as a space launcher and the Space Clipper-- were reportedly expected during the course of 1994, 41  but the open literature has carried little about these programmes since the early 1990s.


Photo I.2.2: SS-21 Missile (Soviet-Russian)

Courtesy of the US DoD

Table I.2.1: Selected Ballistic Missile Technology Development by EtSC States: Level-I Countries
Country/Rocket N° of Stages Propulsion Range
First in Service
SS-4 Sandal* 1 Liquid 540 1959
SS-5 Skean* 1 Liquid 1080 1961
SS-6 Sapwood*       1960
SS-9 Scarp*   Liquid 700 (miles) 1967
SS-18 Satan*   Liquid 11000 1974
SS-19 Stiletto*   Liquid 10000 1974
SS-20 Saber 2 Solid   1977
SS-24 Scalpel***   Solid 10000 1987
SS-25 Sickle**   Solid 10500 1985
SS-N-6 Serb 2 Solid 810 1968
SS-N-8 Sawfly   Liquid 7800 1973
SS-N-18 Stingray   Liquid 6500 1978
SS-N-20 Sturgeon   Solid 8300 1983
SS-N-25 Skiff        
Atlas D/E/F -.. -..   1959
Titan I/II 2 Liquid   1962
Minuteman I 3 Solid   1962
Minuteman II 3 Solid 12500 1966
Minuteman III 2 Solid 11000 1962
Polaris A2/A3 2 Solid 810/1,350 1960-62/74
Poseidon C3 2 Solid 1350 1971
Trident I C4     7400 1979
Trident II D5 3 Solid > ; 4,000 nm 1990

      EtSC= Established Space-Competent States; ..= Data unavailable. *= Fixed system; **= Road mobile system; ***= Rail-mobile system.

Source: Data compiled by the author partially in light of information in Thomas B. Cochran, William M. Arkin, Robert S. Noris, and Milton M. Hoeing, US Nuclear Warhead Production Volume II, Nuclear Weapons Databook, National Resources Defense Council, Cambridge: Ballinger, 1987, pp. 17-19; Thomas B. Cochran, William M. Arkin, Robert S. Noris, and Jeffrey I. Sands, Soviet Nuclear Weapons, Volume IV, Nuclear Weapons Databook, National Resources Defense Council, New York: Harper & Row, Ballinger Division, 1989, pp. 2-19; Philips S. Clark, "Converting Soviet Missiles into Russian Space Launchers," Jane's Intelligence Review, September 1993, pp. 401-04; World Armaments and Disarmament SIPRI Yearbook 1972, SIPRI, Almqvist & Wiksell: Stockholm, 1972, pp. 4-5, 22; and others.


Photo I.2.3: SS-X-14 Missile (Soviet-Russian)

Courtesy of the US DoD


Photo I.2.4: SS-X-15 Missile (Soviet-Russian)

Courtesy of the US DoD

      Under the designation of "Shtil-3A" and launched from a pre-equipped AN-124 aircraft, an SS-N-23 missile-derived rocket is under development and expected to be commercialized by 1999 at the latest. 42  The creation of another air-launched vehicle is also underway. R&D is also moving on the "Rif-MA" space launcher, which uses the SS-N-20 missile as the basis for a rocket to be launched by the AN-225 aircraft.

      Another new launch vehicle, named "Prioboy", is the Prioboy-1 version. In contrast to the new submarine- and air-launched rockets referred to above, Prioboy-1 is land-launched. It is a combination of different stages of ballistic missiles (SS-N-20) and the new Shtil-3 (SS-N-23) space launcher.

      As in the case of the Soviet Union, the origin of the American outer space research and development received strong support from the defense sector. Research by the Department of Defense (DoD) dates from the post-World War II period, gaining momentum in 1955 and again in the late 1950s following the Soviet Union's launch of Sputnik-1. 43  The history of US space launchers, of which one of the first rockets was the Vanguard vehicle launched in 1958, 44  is also closely related to America's development of medium- and intercontinental-range ballistic missiles. 45 

      The first American ICBM to become operational came from the Atlas family of missiles in October 1959, followed by the Titan I family of delivery vehicles in April 1962. 46  Apparently, the only non-reusable space launcher that did not derive from a military programme is the Saturn rocket family, the production of which was abandoned in 1975. Five major families of rockets are still operational: the Atlas, Delta, Pegasus, Scout, and Titan (see Table I.2.1). Most of these space launchers are available in two versions: military (for American use) and civil (for American and international markets). For example, American Titan-II and IV missiles are used as military launchers to place military satellites into orbit.

      Photo I.2.5: Delta II (US) [non disponible]


Photo I.2.6: Atlas Centaur (US)

Courtesy of NASA

      Among American commercial rockets is the air-launched Pegasus space launch booster, developed by Orbital Sciences Corp and Hercules Aerospace Company, although the booster was sponsored by the Defence Advanced Research Agency (DARPA). The Pegasus booster is attached to and launched from underneath the wing of a B-52 aircraft. Due to the sigh and launching of this rocket, Pegasus is only capable of launching small satellites into low Earth orbits (see Photo I.2.7). The first test flight of the Pegasus launcher was conducted successfully on 5 April 1990 (see Photo I.2.8).

      Photo I.2.7: Pegasus Space Launcher (US) [non disponible]


Photo I.2.8: Pegasus Test Flight (US)

Courtesy of NASA


Photo I.2.9: Trident II (D-5) Missile Test Launch at Cape Canaveral (US)

Courtesy of the US DoD

      Photo I.2.10: Trident II (D-5) Missile Test Launch at Sea (US) [non disponible]

Courtesy of the US DoD

      Photo I.2.11: Peacekeeper Missile in its Silo (US) [non disponible]

Courtesy of the US DoD

      The outer-space competence of the USA and the Russian Federation is such that they are the only countries to have successfully accomplished manned missions to the moon. They have also been successful in establishing and maintaining space stations in Earth orbit, particularly the Soviet Union's operation of the MIR station (see Photo I.2.12). In rocketry, they have developed different types of expandable space launchers as well as space shuttles. The Soviet placement of heavy loads in low orbit, Energiya, made it possible to launch the disassembled parts of a space station and the now suspended unmanned space shuttle Buran. 47  The latest generation of American space launchers is the reusable Space Transportation System, which includes the manned Space Shuttle (see Photo I.2.14). In contrast to its Russian counterpart, the Space Shuttle has been operational for almost two decades.


Photo I.2.12: MIR Station (Russian Federation)

Courtesy of Space Research Institute, Moscow


Photo I.2.13: Shuttle/MIR Docking

Courtesy of NASA

Table I.2.2: Selected Sounding Rocket/Space Launcher Technology Development by EtSC States: Level-I Countries
Country/ Rocket Rocket & Function Propulsion Type Capability (kg) Present Status
Lance-Vostok 3 stages, SL Liquid 4,730 to Lo, 1,150
to Ho, 1,840 to Ss
Lance-Molnya 4 stages, SL Liquid 7,500 to Lo,18,000 to Se Operational
Lance-Soyouz 4 stages, SL Liquid 7,240 to Lo, 1,600
to Mo, 900 to Po
Lance-Kosmos 2 stages, SL Liquid 1,700 to 180 km,
1,000 to 800 km
SL-11 3 stages, SL Liquid 4,000 to Lo Operational
Tsyklon 3 stages, SL Liquid 4 000 to Lo Operational
Proton (D-1) 3 stages, SL Liquid 20,600 to Lo Operational
Proton (D-1-e) 4 stages, SL Liquid 2,500 to Go, 5,700
to Moon, 4,600 to
Zenit 2 stages, SL Liquid 13,740 to Lo,
11,380 to Ss, 2,500
to Go
Energiya 4 motors, SL Liquid, cryogenic 105,000 to Lo,
32,000 to Moon,
19,000 to Go
Energiya/Buran 4 motors, SSV Liquid, cryogenic 30,000 to Lo R&D
Volna 2, SL Liquid 430 kg to 200 km
185 kg to 700 km
Shtil-1 3, SL Liquid 265 kg to 200 km
90 kg to 700 km
Rocket Body
& Function
Shtil-2 3, SL Liquid 410 kg to 200 km
220 kg to 700 km
Shtil-3 4, SL Liquid 950 kg to 200 km
730 kg to 700 km
Rif-MA 4, SL 1-3 Solid
4 liguid
1500 kg to 200 km
1200 kg to 700 km
Prioboy-1 4, SL 1 Solid
2-4 liquid
1700 kg to 200 km
1200 kg to 700 km
Scout G-1 4 stages, SL Solid 451 to 550 km Operational
Scout 2 4 stages, SL Solid 1,447 to To, 3,983
to Lo
Delta 3 stages, SL   1,819 to To, 5,039
to Lo
Delta-2 3 stages, SL Solid and liquid 2,340 to To, 5,900
to Lo
Atlas-1 2 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 2,770 to To, 6,780
to Lo
Atlas-2 2 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 2,900 to To, 7,120
to Lo
Atlas-2As 2 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 3,150 to To, 7,640
to Lo
Rocket Body
& Function
Titan-2 3 stages, SL   2,177 to polar Lo Discontinued
Titan-34D 3 stages, SL Solid and
1,900 to Go,
12,500 to Lo
Titan-IV 3 stages, SL Solid and liquid 1,900 to Go,
12,500 to Lo
Operational soon

      Eo= Equatorial orbit; Go= Geostationary orbit; Ho= Helio-synchronous orbit; Lo= Low orbit; Po= Prognoz orbit; POLo= Polar orbit; Se= Semi-synchronous Elliptical Orbit; SCEs= Space-Competent States; SL= Space Launcher; Ss= Sun-synchronous orbit; SSV= Space Shuttle Vehicle; STS= Space Transportation System; To= Transfer orbit (Moon, Venus, Mars, or Deep space); ..= Data unavailable.

Source= Data compiled by the author partly in the light of information given in Roger Stanyard, World Satellite Survey, London, Lloyd's Aviation Department, 1987; Atlas de Géographie de L'espace. Sous la direction de Fernand Verger, Sides-Reclus, 1992, pp. 75, 81; Nicholas L. Johnson (ed.), The Soviet Year in Space: 1990, Colorado Springs: Teledyne Brown Engineering, 1991; Salvatori, Nicoletta, "Così un Sogno ha Potuto Mettere le Ali," Airone Spazio, Numero Speciale, n°. 120, Aprile 1991, pp. 109-21; Igor I. Velichko, Nikolai A. Obukhov, Georgy G. Sity, et al. "Launch Vehicles Using Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missiles Technologies," Space Bulletin, Vol. 2, N° 1, 1995, pp. 24-26, op. cit; and others.


Photo I.2.14: Space Shuttle (United States)

Courtesy of NASA

      R&D is also in progress to explore other, more-advanced types of reusable space transportation systems. New concepts and alternatives in space shuttles seek the development of regularly reusable vehicles, especially for low-orbit satellite launching. One case in point is the case of the Delta Clipper (DC-X) rocket concept initiated by DoD and now being tested by NASA (see Photo I.2.15), although it will be several years before such a system can be commercialized. 48  Other technology developments include work being done on the HL-20, a Personnel Launch System (PLS). HL-20 is a small space vehicle designed to transport up to 10 astronauts and small cargo to and from low Earth orbit (see Photo I.2.16). HL-20 is expected to be launched and landed much in the same way as the present Space Shuttle, but is a smaller vehicle minimizing both maintenance and cost. Other R&D worth noting here is the planned joint programme for a space station, supported by the USA, Russia, and a few other EtSC States, which the end of the Cold War and the reassessment of relationships and space programmes has now made feasible proposition.


Photo I.2.15: Delta Clipper Experiment (USA)

      Photo I.2.16: R&D on Space Vehicles (USA) a. PLS Experiment [non disponible]

From left: the Rockwell wing body 7, the McDonnell Douglas Vertical Landing and the Lockheed Martin Lifting Body configuration.


b. Other Reusable Launch Vehicles

Courtesy of NASA

      However, the Soviet space programme had been beset by financial and other problems since the mid-1980s. The dismantling of the Soviet Union in 1991 led to a fragmentation of its space institutions and industries, throwing a shadow on the future of Russian activities in outer space. 49  The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) has inherited the space capabilities of the former USSR, but the questionable stability of the CIS presupposes further dismantling of its space capabilities and an overall decrease in space activities. 50  Although this fragmentation is still continuing, 51  it seems safe to state that the Russian Federation's defence and space agencies have inherited most of the former Soviet capabilities in terms of outer space, BMs, Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) facilities, detection/tracking and launching sites, manufacturing capabilities and human resources. 52  Since the early 1990s, intensive rethinking on better utilization of space resources for both military and civil industries has guided the restructuring of Russia's space activities. 53 

      For example, of the three major launch sites and a few other test ranges from which the former Soviet Union operated its launch vehicles, two are located in the Russian Federation: the North Cosmodrome (originally Plesetsk) in the northwestern part of the Federation facing the Nordic states and the Kapustin Yar near the Volga River and city of the same name. Not all of the three launching sites were constructed as such, but they are usually identified as having been used as military bases for the launching of medium and/or intercontinental-range ballistic missiles. One of three Over-The-Horizon-Backscatters (OTH-B) near Nikolayevsk-na-Amur and a few of the eight long-range early-warning ABM-associated phased-array radars remain on Russian territory, as well as all of the eleven Hen-House series radars and the Pillbox phased-array radars. 54  Nevertheless, it should be noted that some key early-warning and space launch facilities, as well as manufacturing capabilities, are located in other former Soviet Republics. During a transitional period, facilities for strategic deterrent forces were reported in Western literature to be under CIS control, 55  although some analysts found it to be doubtful. At the same time, it was also reported that Belarus, Kazakstan, and the Ukraine had joint control of former Soviet strategic weapons and other devices located in their respective territories.


Figure I.2.1: Anti-Ballistic Missile Radar at Pushkino (Russian Federation)

Courtesy of the US DoD


Figure I.2.2: Galosh ABM Interceptor (Russian Federation)

Courtesy of the US DoD

      The Ukraine reportedly has two OTH-B radars (near Kiev and Komsomolsk) and one ABM-associated phased-array (near Mukachevo). 56  In addition, it has major manufacturing facilities for space launchers (the Tsiklon and the Zenit rockets), as well as electronic intelligence and early-warning application satellites and radars, of which the naval EORSAT spacecraft is more developed than others. 57  Kazakhstan has inherited the Baiconur Cosmodrome--renamed the Tyuratam Cosmodrome --situated east of the Aral Sea near the city of Leninsk in Central Asia, as well as the long-range phased-array Sary Shagan radar. 58  For its part, Belarus is known to possess manufacturing facilities for early-warning radars in the city of Gomel. 59  Different manufacturing capabilities are therefore spread-out in these three territories, none of which seems to possess a combination of satellites and ground launching/tracking facilities, although the Ukraine may be an exception. However, all of these independent republics have had different missiles (such as the SS-18, SS-19, SS-24, and SS-25) which could be converted into space launchers after some modification. However, given their respective stockpile, conversion, operation, and satellite assembly requirements, this option seems to be realistic only in the case of the Russian Federation.

      Unlike the Soviet programme, American activity has progressed. NASA has access to space-launch sites in both the continental United States and elsewhere. The biggest of these sites is Cape Canaveral, in Florida, which contains, among other things, a US Air Force base and the Kennedy Space Center. In California, NASA operates space launch/return flights from the Vanderberg and Edwards Air Force Bases. Vanderberg Air Force Base is used as a launch site, while Edwards AFB is used in conjunction with the Kennedy Space Center for the landing of the space shuttle. NASA also operates the Wallops Space Center located on Wallops Island in Virginia which, along with the Kennedy Space Center, is known primarily to operate sounding rocket launches. 60 

      In terms of dual-use tracking capabilities, the United States has developed a worldwide array of antennae and radars. 61  Among these are the ballistic missile early-warning systems in Alaska (Clear), Greenland (Thule), and the UK (Fylingdales Moor). Its radar at Fylingdales Moor, for example, has the primary task of providing early-warning of ICBMs and SLBMs and the secondary task of space surveillance. Thus, it plays an integral role in American satellite tracking capabilities. 62  In addition, ground-based phased-array radars and systems such as the Perimeter Acquisition Radar Attack Characterization System (PARCS) (Cavalier, North Dakota) and the PAVE PAWS radar (Massachusetts) are operated. Other space tracking radars include sites in Turkey (Pirinçlik) and Florida (Eglin); optical tracking systems in New Mexico, South Korea (Choejong-San), Italy (San Vito), Hawaii (Maui), and the Indian Ocean (Diego Garcia). Furthermore, the Ground-based, Electron-Optical Deep Space Surveillance System (GEODSS) operates in New Mexico (Socorro), South Korea (Taegu), Hawaii (Maui), and the Indian Ocean (Diego Garcia). The USA also operates three transmitting and six receiving stations for space surveillance in southeastern America as well as a number of other detection and tracking radars worldwide some of whose data could have dual-use - e.g., in the Pacific (Kwajalein Atoll), Atlantic (Ascending Island), Caribbean (Antigua), Hawaii (Kaena Point), and in Massachusetts (MIT Lincoln Laboratory).

      EtSC States in Category II have achieved considerable outer-space competence and are known as being well-established equipment, technology, and service supplier States. Indeed, the Soviet Union and the USA were not the only countries engaged in launching-vehicles R&D in the 1950s. One such country was China, which is known to have undertaken R&D on missiles modelled on foreign sources in the late 1950s--reportedly with Soviet technological assistance and some knowledge of the US missile programme. 63  Rocketry research, for instance, began in 1957 at the First Subacademy of the Fifth Academy of the Ministry of Defence. The China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology (CALT) was established that year. In February 1960, the Chinese successfully launched their first sounding rocket. The T-7M, a small liquid-propellant rocket designed by the Shanghai Institute of Machine and Electricity of the Chinese Academy of Science, was followed in September of the same year by the "... first application type liquid meteorological rocket--the T-7.". Only a month later, the first Chinese short-range rocket was launched. After a series of small- and medium-sized rocket launches during the 1960s, 64  there was a preliminary intercontinental rocket launch in the early 1970s, but it was not until May 1980, nine years later, that the first full-range launch of this kind took place. 65 

      In civil activities, Chinese space launchers are indigenously-built. 66  The first generation, designated Chang Zheng (CZ) and also known as Long March (LM) rockets, placed China's first satellite into space in April 1970. 67  Since then, CZ rockets have evolved considerably. The CZ family, designed and produced by the Beijing Wanyaun Corporation, consists of three series of rockets (the CZ-1, 2, and 3), each series having different versions. The CZ-1 rocket was demonstrated in 1965, but came into service only in 1970. In 1974, a new CZ-2 two-stage liquid-fuel rocket series was put into service with the first and only launch of the CZ-2A. About two-thirds of China's launches from 1970 to 1990 were directed to low orbits, and the CZ-2C version has been used for 75% of these launches. A new rocket, the CZ-2E, was launched in July 1990, and both CZ-2 versions were still operational in 1994. CZ-2E is also a two-stage liquid-fuel rocket, but it has four additional strap-on motors designed to lift heavy and voluminous object into low orbit (see Photo I.2.17). 68 

      Geostationary orbit launches are effected with follow-on CZ-3 and CZ-4 rocket. CZ-3 rockets were put in service in 1984 and have been used for all subsequent launches to geostationary orbit, with the exception of the 1988 and 1990 CZ-4 launches. 69  In fact, the CZ-4 no longer appears in the CALT catalogue of launchers and the CZ-3 would appear to be the only high-orbit option available. However, China is planning to quadruple its satellite delivery capacity to geostationary orbits by developing two heavy-lift launchers, the CZ-3A and the CZ-2E/HO. Both have a three-stage body structure with liquid and cryogenic propulsion motors and both were marketed in 1994.

      Photo I.2.17: CZ-2E Space Launch (China) [non disponible]

Courtesy of CALT

      Like China, France has been active in outer space since the end of the 1940s. Rocketry research started in 1949, the year that the Véronique sounding-rocket first appeared. Construction of 15 AGI (International Geophysical Year) rockets was subsidized by the National Defence Scientific Steering Committee (CASDN) and the work was carried out by the Ballistic and Aerodynamics Laboratory at Vernon. French sounding-rocket activity began in March 1959; 70  three Véronique rockets were launched that year, eleven in 1960, and eight in 1961. These were followed by two Bélier and seven Centaure rockets in 1961, and in December of that year France decided to develop space launchers.

      Initially, research may have been oriented more to military requirements than to sounding rockets proper. France produced the Diamant space launcher, using technology originally designed for ground-to-ground ballistic systems--the Agate, Emeraude, Rubis, Saphir, and Topaze missiles. 71  Diamant launchers were constructed by the National Centre for Space Studies (CNES) and the Ministerial Armaments Delegation (DMA), via the transformation of the Saphir missile, with work undertaken by the Society for the Study and the Realization of Ballistic Vehicles (SEREB). The Diamant-A launcher was launched on 26 November 1965 from Hammaguir in the western Algerian Sahara, when it placed the 40 kg Astérix-1 satellite into orbit. 72  The Diamant-A successfully placed three other satellites (Diapason-1A in 1966 and Diadème 1 and 2 in 1967) from the same launch-site. France then decided, on 30 June 1967, to construct an improved version, the Diamant-B. Three years later, in March 1970, Diamant-B placed its first satellite into orbit--the German Wika satellite from the French Centre Spatial Guyanais French Guyana Space Centre (CSG), near the city of Kourou in Guyana. 73  Diamant-B made two other successful flights but ran into difficulty during its fourth and fifth flights in December 1971 and May 1973, respectively. The Diamant programme was formally abandoned on 14 December 1974, although work continued on a new version, the Diamant-BP4, which successfully achieved three launches in 1975.


Photo I.2.18: Ground-based Ballistic Missile (France)



Photo I.2.19: Sea-Launched Ballistic Missile (France)


      However, having terminated its independent launch-vehicle programme, France then directed its manufacturing capabilities to the creation of ESA's space launcher family. 74  It was only in the early 1990s, with the emerging need for low-cost launch vehicles, that French companies decided to create a new, comprehensive space-launching system. Reportedly, Aerospatiale is developing the ESL, which is a three-stage rocket capable of carrying satellites weighing up to 1,200 kg to an altitude of 550 km in polar orbit. ESL will probably operate out of the CSG and to be marketed shortly after the year 2000.

      The United Kingdom has an equally long involvement in rocketry and satellite R&D. 75  It developed the Skylark sounding rocket in the 1960s and its work on space launchers is linked to military programmes. For example, the Black Arrow space launcher (produced in the mid-1960s) is said to have derived from a mix of the Black Knight missile and the Skylark. 76  The Black Arrow was reportedly abandoned in the early 1970s after three launch failures, 77  and since then the United Kingdom has not pursued any further space-launch development.

      All three of the EtSC Level-II States mentioned above -- China, France and the United Kingdom -- possess BMs (see Table I.2.3), and BM R&D has played an important role in their space-launcher research. The CSS-2 Chinese BM, which belongs to the present generation of CSS ground-based missiles, became operational in the same year as the CZ-1 space launcher - 1970. 78  The CSS-3 and CSS-4 BMs became operational in 1978/79, the CSS-4 in 1981, and a submarine-launched BM, the CSS-N-3, in 1983/84. 79  With the exception of the CSS-4, all of these BMs have low Earth orbit capabilities. Reports indicate that two new missiles are under development: (1) a ground-based solid-propellant--the CSS-X-5, and (2) a SLBM--the CSS-NX-4. 80 

      In the area of early-warning BMs, China reportedly uses two tracking-station sites associated with phased-array radar complexes: the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre, which reportedly covers Central Asia, and the Shanxi site which is said to cover the northern border. 81  It is interesting to note that all of these sites are also used as China's three official space-booster sites.

      France, which achieved rocket launch capability in the mid-1960s, has continued to develop its BM capability. Its S-3D IRBM came into service in 1980 and is still operational. A new missile, the M5-S5, has been approved either as a new system or to replace the S-3D in the future. 82  Similarly to China, France's SLBM BM, the M-4, came into service after its ground-based counterpart - in 1985. 83  Little has appeared in the open literature on France's ground-based early-warning BM capability. It is known, however, that such capability has been mounted in the Henri Poincaré and the Le Monge. This is not surprising since the submarine section of the French nuclear forces is the pillar of its deterrence posture. After the Hammaguir launch-site was closed-down, France set up another launch-site at Kourou, where the ESA launches are carried out. 84 

Table I.2.3: Selected Ballistic Missile Technology Development by EtSC States: Level-II Countries
Country/Rocket No. of Stages Propulsion Range (Km) First in Service
CSS-2 1 Liquid 2,700-3000 1970
CSS-3 2 Liquid 7000 1978/79
CSS-4 2 Liquid 15000 1981
CSS-N-3 - - 2,200-3,000 1983/84
S-3D - - 3500 1980
M5-S5ð - -   R&D (2000)
M-4 - - 5000 1985
M5-S5ð - -   R&D (2000)
United Kingdom        
Polaris A-3TK 2 solid 4,600 (2,500) 1967
Trident II D5ð 3 solid > ; 4,000 nm R&D (mid-90s)

      EtSC= Established Space-Competent States; ð= Confirmed forthcoming deployment; ð= Probable forthcoming deployment; ..= Data unavailable.

      Source= Data compiled by the author partly from information given in Trident: Thirty Years of the Polaris Sales Agreement, Chief Strategic Systems Executive, United Kingdom: Crown -, May 1993; World Armaments and Disarmament, SIPRI Yearbook 1972, SIPRI, Almqvist & Wiksell: Stockholm, 1972; Ballistic Missile Proliferation: An Emerging Threat, 1992, Arlington: System Planning Corporation, 1992; and others.

      In contrast to China and France, the United Kingdom does not manufacture ground-based or submarine-launched BMs. The present generation of British BMs consists of the American-supplied Polaris missile family, first put into service in 1967, and a new family of missiles, the Trident II D5, is expected to become operational still in the 1990s. 85  The United Kingdom does not possess an adequately instrumented test-range for the tracking and telemetry of its BMs. Polaris and Trident test launches are therefore carried out in the USA at the Eastern Range off the coast of Florida. Since the UK does not have a space-launch centre, 86  early-warning BMs are carried out on its behalf through the American radar installation at the Fylingdales Moor site.

      Other EtSC States whose technological know-how has not been directly derived from BMs are Japan and ESA countries such as Germany, Norway, and Sweden. ESA and its subcontracting companies have become important rocketry participants.

      As regards Japan, its activity in space is overseen by the Space Activities Commission (SAC). 87  It is entrusted with a number of institutions, two of which merit special mention here: the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science (ISAS) 88  operating under the Ministry of Education (MOE), and the National Space Development Agency (NASDA), 89  which is an executive organization linked to the Science and Technology Agency (STA), the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications (MOPT), and the Ministry of Transport (MOT).

      ISAS is an inter-university research institute whose brief is to conduct and supervise research on sounding rockets, satellite launchers, scientific satellites, planetary probes, and scientific balloons. It also operates solid-fuel sounding rockets and space launchers. Its sounding-rocket experiments which began in the late 1950s have included the Kappa, Lambda, and S rocket series. 90  Most of ISAS's launches in the 1970s and 1980s were undertaken by the Mu, a three-stage rocket (with an optional fourth stage) using solid propellants in every stage (see Photo I.2.20). ISAS's next generation of rockets, the M-Vs resemble their predecessors in that they have three stages and use solid fuel. However, their lift-off capacity to low orbit will be more than double.


Photo I.2.20: ISAS M3SII Space Launcher (Japan)

Courtesy of ISAS

      NASDA's role is to develop, launch and track rockets and satellites rather than to operate educational programmes. NASDA's space launcher capability sprang from American Thor-Delta rocket technology: a three-stage rocket, called the N series, which was manufactured by Mitsubishi Heavy Industry in Japan. 91  The first and third stages of the N-1 series used American know-how, but the second stage was developed in Japan. The rocket was propelled by both liquid and solid fuel American motors. First launched in September 1975, the N-I remained operational until 1982. A second version, the N-II, was used for launches from 1980 to 1986. The origin of the technology changed however; the N-II's first stage and strap-on boosters were produced, under US licence, in Japan, while the second stage came from American Thor-Delta technology. The N series successfully placed 15 satellites into geostationary and other orbits.


Photo I.2.21: NASDA H-I Space Launcher (Japan)

Courtesy of NASDA

      The second generation of NASDA rockets is called the H series and, like the N series, they use combined American/Japanese technology. Lift-off capacity was considerably improved, but the first stage and the strap-on boosters were the same as the N-IIs. However, other major sub-systems such as a liquid hydrogen/liquid oxygen engine (LE-5), a third-stage solid rocket motor, and an improved internal guidance system are said to be products of NASDA technology. 92  This series was discontinued after the H-I rocket launch in early 1992. H series rockets have launched nine satellites, all successfully. The H-II follow-up version, was first used in September 1988 for flight tests and initiated regular flight on 4 February 1994, placing a Vehicle Evaluation Pay-load (VAP) spacecraft into an elliptical orbit and deploying the Orbital Re-entry Experiment (OREX) in circular orbit.

      NASDA's H-II rocket is entirely indigenously built. The launcher is lifted beyond the Earth's gravitational pull by a new liquid hydrogen/oxygen engine (LE-7), and two solid rocket boosters. It is propelled further into outer space by two liquid-fuelled stages. With increased thrust and accuracy, the H-II rocket was built not only to launch high-capacity satellites, but also to lift the future Japanese space minishuttle-- H-II Orbiting Plane (HOPE)--in the early 2000s (see Figure I.2.3).

      ISAS and NASDA do not operate from the same launch pad, despite the fact that they conduct only two launches each a year by agreement with the fishing industry. ISAS uses the Kagoshima Space Centre (KSC) located in Uchinoura-cho on Kyushu Island, off the coast of the Ohsumi Peninsula. 93  NASDA's space launchers lift off from Tanegashima Space Centre 94  on Tanegashima Island, 115 km south of the city of Kagoshima.


Figure I.2.3: Artist Concept of HOPE Space Shuttle (Japan)

(Courtesy of NASDA)

      Three other EtSC States have known rocketry capability. For example, in the mid-1970s, research undertaken by the German Space Agency (DARA), under the German Ministry of Research and Technology, 95  focused on sounding rocket manufacturing capabilities. 96  ERNO Raumfahrttechnik GmbH 97  took over the management of sounding-rocket programmes, developing, among others, the TEXUS sounding rocket, which is an exo-atmospheric rocket capable of carrying 250 kg of scientific experiments with a microgravity time of 6-7 minutes. In the late 1980s, ERNO also joined forces with the Swedish Space Corporation (SSC) to develop an even more powerful vehicle, 98  which resulted in the MAXUS sounding rocket (see Figure I.2.4). This uses a Castor IVB motor -- adapted from the American strap-on booster for the Delta II satellite launch vehicle -- and has more than twice the capability of the TEXUS. MAXUS can carry up to almost half a ton of scientific experiments in eight separate sections of its scientific payload-bay. It is available on the international market and has often been used by the ESA.


Figure I.2.4: MAXUS/TEXUS/MiniTESUS Sounding Rockets (Germany)

Courtesy of MBB/ERNO

      Sweden has also produced the MASER, an exo-atmospheric rocket which has technically similar features to the TEXUS. 99  MASER can carry 250 kg of scientific experiments to an altitude of just under 300 km and has a microgravity time of 6-7 minutes. The Swedish space programme has concentrated on the launching of sounding rockets and the operation of satellite ground-stations. Thus, in addition to the MAXUS and the MASER, Sweden has also launched sounding rockets from several other countries and stratospheric balloons from the ESRANGE site in northern Sweden, near Kiruna. 100 

      Norway is another Scandinavian country with an active launch programme. 101  The Royal Norwegian Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (NTNF) was established in January 1960 to promote sounding-rocket R&D. The creation of the Space Activity Division (SAD) within its ranks took place in 1965, but in June 1987 SAD was replaced by the Norwegian Space Centre (NSC). 102  Because of its geographical location, Norway has a long rocket history, the first launch being a Nike/Cajun rocket in August 1962; by the end of 1991, a total of 559 sounding rockets had been launched. 103  The NSC operates the Andøya Rocket Range (ARR) which has been used, under the ESA's special project arrangement, for rocketry programmes since 1972. In addition, the NSC also enables the Tromsø Satellite Station (TSS) in Tromsø to receive data from polar orbiting satellites.

      Italy has also been very active in rocketry since 1960, when Italy initiated both scientific research and a sounding-rocket programme. 104  This was followed, in 1962, by a co-operative programme between the Aerospace Research Centre of the University of Rome and NASA, for the development of a series of scientific satellites and launching capabilities. 105  This programme produced the first Italian satellite, the San Marco, which was launched in 1964 by a Scout vehicle. The programme also developed the San Marco range facility over two sea platforms. The range is located about 150 km miles north of Mombasa (Kenya), and consists of the San Marco Launching Pad and the Santa Rita Control Centre which are used to launch low equatorial orbit satellites. 106  However, it was only in 1979 that a National Space Plan (NSP) was created to promote outer space activities. In 1988, the Italian Space Agency (ASI) was established under the Ministry for the Universities and Science and Technology (MURST) to co-ordinate and manage NSP and Italian scientific and industrial participation in ESA and other international programmes. 107 

      Like Germany, Italy is much involved in the ESA's development of a space station module. For example, it is working on two Mini Pressurized Logistics Modules (MPLMs) for the transportation of user payloads and re-supply missions for the international space station. In addition, the Italian firm BPD has developed two generations of solid strap-on boosters for the European space launcher and a third generation of such boosters is being developed in co-operation with SEP, the French firm. 108  The Italians also produce qualified outer-space components for the American Space Shuttle such as the apogee motor--the solid-fuel Italian Research Interim Stage (IRIS). IRIS is also believed to be under study for possible use as a component for the third stage of the Chinese CZ-1M and other rockets. 109 


Photo I.2.22: Scout Launch Vehicle at San Marco

Courtesy of NASA


Photo I.2.23: Santa Rita and San Marco Platforms

Courtesy of NASA

      BPD has also initiated a feasibility analysis of the VEGA family of launch vehicles, 110  that could eventually include three different rocket versions: Capricornio BPD alternative, VEGA KO, and the VEGA K. VEGA vehicles are designed to carry satellites between 300 and 680 kg to various altitudes in low-Earth orbit (up to 550 km polar orbit). Furthermore, BPD has also, under joint Spanish/Italian industrial arrangements, proposed a specific vehicle configuration in the Spanish Capricornio launcher which is designed to carry spacecraft of up to 135 kg to 550 km polar orbit. While the BPD proposal would not increase this capability, it would provide an opportunity to utilize the company's new ZEFIRO rocket engine--a proposal that is reportedly also to be made to Aerospatiale for its new ELS vehicle.

      Most of the outer space technologies competence of the majority of Level II EtSC States are employed at ESA and ARIANESPACE. ESA regrouped the R&D work undertaken by its predecessors: the European Launcher Development Organization (ELDO) and the European Space Research Organization (ESRO). 111  ESRO developed sounding rockets (see Photo I.2.24) while ELDO developed Europe I and Europe II in the Europe rocket series between the mid-1960s and the early 1970s (see Photo I.2.25). 112  The Europe series launcher was a three-stage rocket combining mainly British (Black Knight), French (Diamant and Véronique), and German (third stage cryogenic propulsion) rocket technologies. A series of three flight tests of Europe I-F1 and F2 were made in 1964, all of them unsuccessfully.


Photo I.2.24: Sounding Rocket (ESRO)

Courtesy of ESA

      Photo I.2.25: Europe I Space Launcher (ELDO) [non disponible]

Courtesy of ESA

      The next series, Europe II, was reportedly a modified version of its predecessor and basically designed for geostationary launches. 113  This series also failed, the last configuration tested being the Europe II-F11 rocket in 1971. Work on the subsequent Europe-III version was terminated on 30 April 1973 and one year later ELDO was dissolved. Despite this decision, ELDO had provided European countries with much experience in rocket technology. As a matter of fact, the present Ariane rocket series 114  (see Table .2.4) employed by ARIANESPACE 115  from the French launch-site at Kourou, originates in part from research on the Europe-III rocket initiated under ELDO and continued by ESRO.


Figure I.2.5: Ariane Space Launchers (Europe)

Courtesy of ESA


Figure I.2.6: Ariane 5 Multiple Mission Concept (Europe)

Courtesy of ESA

      Ariane 1 was first flown in December 1979 and the series has progressively evolved since then (see Figure I.2.5). The present rocket -- the Ariane 4 -- has solid/liquid/cryogenic-fuelled motors depending on which of its six versions is used to launch satellites for low and geostationary orbits. The next rocket in the series is expected to be a new generation vehicle with a radically different architecture. 116  Ariane 5 is expected to be capable of launching two large, or three smaller, satellites per launch when fully operational (see Figure I.2.6). Although its planned development was canceled, one other variation contemplated was the Ariane 5 HERMES, originally designed to place the now defunct European space shuttle, HERMES, into orbit. In addition, the first certification flight by Ariane 5, on 4 June 1996, was unsuccessful, but other follow on flights confirmed the vehicle's expected technological capabilities.

Table I.2.4: Selected Sounding Rocket/Space Launcher Technology Development by EtSC States: Level-II Countries
Country/ Rocket Rocket/ Function Propulsion Type Capability (kg) Status
CZ-1 3 stages, SL Solid, liquid 700 to 300 km at 57ð Discontinued
CZ-1D 3 stages, SL Liquid, solid 750 to Lo Operational
CZ-1M 3 stages, SL Liquid   R&D
FB-1 2 stages, SL Liquid 2,800 to Lo/1,000 to Go Discontinued
CZ-2C 2 stages, SL Liquid 2,800 to Lo, 1,000 to Go Operational
CZ-2E 2 stages, SL Liquid 9,000 to Lo, 3,150 to Go Operational
CZ-2E/HO 3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 4,800 to Go R&D
CZ-3 3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 1,450 to Go Operational
CZ-3A 3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 2,300 to Go R&D
CZ-4 3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 1,500 to Ho, 4,000 to 200 km Operational
Europe I¶¶ 3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic   Cancelled
Europe II-F11 3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic   Cancelled
Ariane 1 3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 1,800 to Go Discontinued
Ariane 2 3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 2,200 to Go Discontinued
Ariane 3 3 stages, SL Liquid, solid, and cryogenic 2,600 to Go Discontinued
Ariane 4
3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 1,900 to To, 2,700 to
Ho, 4,270 to Lo
Country/ Rocket Rocket/ Function Propulsion Type Capability (kg) Status
Ariane 4
3 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 4,200 to To, 6,000 to Ho, 7,000 to Lo Operational
Ariane 5
L5 Double
2 stages, SL Liquid, cryogenic 6,800 to To, 12,000
to Ho, 7,000 to Lo
Hermès 2 stages, SSV cryogenic 22,000 to 90 km Suspended
ESL 3 stages, SL   1200 to 550 km POLo- R&D
TEXUS 1 stage, SR Solid 250 to 250-290 km Operational
MAXUS 1 stage, SR Solid 420-470 to 850 km Operational
VEGA (KO) 2 stages, SL   300 to 550 km POLo R&D
VEGA (K) 2 stages, SL   680 to 550 km POLo R&D
M-3S/M-3H 3 stages, SL Solid 300 to 250 km Suspended
M-4S 4 stages, SL Solid 180 to 250 km Suspended
M-3SII: 1/2 3 stages, SL Solid 770 to 250 km Operational
M-V 3 stages, SL Solid 1,800 to 250 km R&D
N-I 3 stages, SL Liquid 130 to Go Discontinued
N-II 3 stages, SL Solid, liquid and cryogenic 350 to Go Discontinued
Country/ Rocket Rocket/ Function Propulsion Type Capability
H-I 3 stages, SL Solid, liquid and cryogenic 550 to Go Discontinued
H-II 2 stages, SL solid, cryogenic 2,000 to Go; 2to 3 ton probe to TO Operational
HOPE SSV boosted by H-II   R&D
Capricornio 2 stages, SL   135 to 550 km POLo R&D
Capricornio¶¶¶ 2 stages, SL   130 to 550 km POLo R&D
MASER 1 stage, SR Solid 250 to 250-290 km Operational
MAXUS 1 stage, SR Solid 420-470 to 850 km Operational

      ¶= Joint venture between the ERNO Raumfahrttechnik GmbH and the Swedish Space Corporation (SSC); ¶¶= F1 to F9 and G1 to G2 versions; ¶¶¶= Proposed BPD alternative; CZ= Chang Zheng or Long March; FB= Feng Bao or Storm; Go= Geostationary orbit; Eo= Equatorial orbit; Ho= Helio-synchronous orbit; Lo= Low orbit; Mo= Molnya orbit; Po= Prognoz orbit; POLo= Polar orbit; EtSC= Established Space-Competent States; To= Transfer orbit (Moon, Venus, Mars, or Deep space); ..= Data unavailable.

Sources = Data compiled by the author partly on the basis of information given in China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, CALT, Beijing, 1991; Yang Chunfu, "China's LONG MARCH Series Carrier Rockets", Military World, May 1989, pp. 20-25; Atlas de Géographie de L'Espace. Sous la direction de Fernand Verger, Sides-Reclus, 1992, p. 81; "National Space Development Agency of Japan", NASDA Brochure, Japan, 1991; "National Space Development Agency of Japan", NASDA Brochure, Japan, 1992; Space in Japan: 1992, Research and Development Bureau, Science and Technology Agency, Keidanren, 1992, pp. 21-22; "Japanese National Report submitted to the Twenty-First Plenary Meeting of the ICSU Committee on Space Research", Japan, 1990; Institute of Space and Astronautical Science Activities, Japan, 1990; Microgravity MAXUS Brochure, Swedish Space Corporation; The European Space Agency, European Space Agency, Public Relations Division, Paris, June, 1992; "A European Success Story", 50th Launch Special, Ariane, European Space Agency, April 1992; Hermes, European Space Agency, ESA D/STS/H, May, 1991; ARIANESPACE: The World's First Commercial Space Transportation Company, ARIANESPACE, Evry, 1991; Balduccini, M., "BPD Hardware Development to Support Low Cost Missions", ESA Round-Table on "Space 2020', European Space Research and Technical Centre, European Space Agency, Noordwij, The Netherlands, 27-29 June 1995 and others.

      Information compiled in the open literature show that EtSC Level I and Level II States have made 3,395 successful space launches between the beginning of the space era and 1991. 117  (No such record seems to have been published after 1991. Despite this lack of available date, the information which follows is still pertinent, if only because it reflects most of the period of the space era.) As illustrated in Graph I.2.1, 2,315 of the launches (over 68%) for the period that data is available were conducted by the USSR, which made 80-100 launches a year between 1970 and 1978. Its successor, the Russian Federation, continues to be fairly active in space, despite some cutbacks overall. During the same period, the USA conducted 953 launches, or just over 28% of the total. No other State achieved successful triple-digit or double-digit figures per year.


Graph I.2.1: Reported EtSC States Successful Space Launches (1957-1991)

Source: Adapted from information given in Space Log: 1957-1991, International Space Year, 1992, TRW, 1992, p. 45; as well as information supplied by various space organizations of the respective countries.

      For example, the Japanese and the European programmes, which recorded the third highest successful figures during the same period, undertook only 43 operations each, or a little under 1.3% of the total. It should be noted, however, that Japan initiated operations only in 1970 and Europe in 1979. China conducted 29 launches, while the individual figures for Australia, France, and the United Kingdom were, respectively, 1, 10 and 1, making a joint total of 12 in all. 118 

2. Space-Based Devices

      The impressive record of development in the manufacture and operation of ballistic missiles and space launch vehicles discussed above is also indicative of the ability of the EtSC States to develop a number of other space-based devices. This is true for civil applications of artificial satellites, but also for their military uses. Dedicated and non-dedicated military satellites have played an important role in military preparedness and real-time battlefield operations for many of these States since the early 1960s. 119 

      As is the case for space launchers and ballistic missiles, the Soviet Union and the USA were the first to operate an array of satellites for different military applications. In photo reconnaissance, for example, experts generally believe that Russian space-based sensors have very high spatial resolution--in the order of centimetres. However, even today, there is little actually available in the open literature concerning Russian satellite application development--be it photo reconnaissance, early warning, or other military-related spacecraft. At time of writing, about six different types of cameras are believed to provide Russia with images from 300 m to less than 1 metre resolution in the Cosmos, Resurs, and other spacecraft configurations. The Resurs configuration provides images by collecting the data and returning the film back to Earth in the spacecraft which is then overhauled and re-used. These spacecraft are placed at altitudes of about 250 km into near-circular and near-polar orbits and usually have a very short life-span: about five Resurs spacecraft are launched annually. 120  Reportedly, Russia is now operating the newest (fifth or sixth generation) reconnaissance spacecraft of the NIKA satellite family. 121 

      There are more data on American military activity - for example, the KH [Key-Hole], Magnum, White Cloud and other satellites. KH satellites were launched in classified reconnaissance programmes such as the CORONA (August 1960), ARGON (May 1962) and LANYARD (July 1963). Images from the CORONA programme, including photos of cameras and the re-entry vehicle, were recently declassified, thus publicly revealing the development status of American reconnaissance spacecraft at the time. 122  For example, the KH-11 series has a ground resolution of 15.24 cm and is equipped with IR night-capable devices.


Figure I.2.7: CORONA Reconnaissance Satellite (USA)

Courtesy of NRO

      A more advanced series, the KH-11+/KH-12, has thermal-imaging and light-enhancement capabilities enabling night pictures to be taken, instant transmission imaging, and refuelling capability. The resolution of this series is suspected to be better than 15.24 cm. Other types of satellite are radar-imaging spacecraft, one example being the Lacrosse series which carries night/cloud cover-capable devices with reported ground resolutions of 60 cm to 3 m. As for navigation satellites, NAVSTAR is completely operational with a constellation of 24 spacecraft. The NAVSTAR--Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) provides navigation and positioning data to both military forces and the public civilian market worldwide. 123 


Figure I.2.8: CORONA Launching Sequence

Courtesy of NRO


Figure I.2.9: CORONA Recovery Sequence

Courtesy of NRO


Figure I.2.10: Artist View of NAVSTAR Satellite (USA)

Courtesy of NRO


Figure I.2.11: Artist View of Global Positioning System (USA)

Courtesy of NASA

      Incentives to reach greater degrees of independence in outer space matters have also motivated other countries to develop their own space-based devices and most, if not all, Level II EtSC States have been able to produce different kinds of satellites for different applications although only a handful of these concern dedicated and non-dedicated military systems. One such country, however, is China. Satellite activities began in 1958 with the support of the military stimulating R&D 124 -- for example, the initiatives taken by the Fifth Research Academy of the Ministry of National Defence, which was already active at the time in the development of Chinese rockets. However, it was not until 1965, following the successful launch of a middle-range surface-to-surface missile, that an official proposal to construct and launch satellites was made. After the Commission of Science and Technology for National Defence (COSTND) had organized a feasibility demonstration study and submitted a report to the Central Special Committee (CSC), the Satellite Design Institute was created in September 1965 and China's first scientific experimental satellite, the DFH-1, was designed. In early 1967 the satellite programme was delayed because the general architecture of the spacecraft had to be modified to enable the song "The East is Red" to be broadcast. Since then, China has manufactured three major categories of spacecraft--scientific experimental, remote sensors, and communications satellites, some of which have been used for military purposes.

      Chinese remote-sensing satellites include Earth observation, technical experiment, and sun-synchronous orbit meteorological spacecraft. The Chinese Earth observation Fanhui Shi Weixing satellite, also known as Fanhui Shi Yao Gang Weixing, is a recoverable spacecraft. First generation satellites were launched in 1974 and, reportedly, second generation ones in 1992. 125  Like their Russian counterparts, these recoverable satellites also have a very low orbit of about 175 km for the perigee and 400 km for the apogee. They also have a short flight-life: the first generation satellites were able to stay in orbit for only 5-8 days, and their successors for 10-15 days. As of 1993, China was already working on its third generation system. Chinese remote-sensing satellites carry a visible light surface feature camera, but their spatial resolution has been kept secret. Nevertheless, in the early 1990s Chinese defence experts have indicated that China's satellites resolution levels were much better than those of civil-use satellites then. 126  This implied that Chinese sensors were able to provide data with resolutions equal to or better than 10 m. Nonetheless, if these experts were also taking Russian commercial satellite data into consideration, this meant that their imagery would be better than 2 m.

      The unique nature of satellites and their environment in general, but of remote sensing spacecraft in particular, is recognized in Chinese official documents. It is also acknowledged that "... recoverable remote sensing satellites had been widely used in national defence and economic constructions." 127  In addition, Chinese military authorities supported communications satellite R&D, 31 March 1975, the Standing Committee of the Central Military Commission (CMC) approved a report on the development of a Chinese communications satellite put forward by the State Planning Commission and the COSTND. This was promptly officially endorsed. Less than a decade later, in January 1984, China's first experimental communications satellite was launched.

      France took much longer than China to acquire military satellites. In photo reconnaissance, for example, France's HELIOS I spacecraft was launched by an Ariane-4 launcher on 7 April 1995. HELIOS I was a joint co-operative product between France, Italy, and Spain. 128  Although its ground resolution has not been published, some observers believe it to be in the order of 1-1.5 m. 129  It is possible that HELIOS I resolution is indeed much more than 1 m. HELIOS I provides Earth observation data for military manoeuvres and similar exercises. In addition, HELIOS I also gives France and its HELIOS partners the technological means to implement political decisions by using HELIOS data as their own NTM verification. It could also allow them to participate in selective or collective monitoring and verification of arms control and disarmament agreement as image providers.

      Figure I.2.12: Artist View of HELIOS I (France) [non disponible]

Courtesy of Matra Marconi Space

      Military-application satellites used by Level II EtSC States also include the dual-use of satellite platforms. For example, French civilian communication satellites carry military components on board or perform military or military-related assignments. TELECOM I and II, for example, carry SYRACUSE (Système de radio-communication utilisant un satellite) I and II, which are military payloads (one-sixth of TELECOM I, and a little less than 50% for its successor). 130  The same arrangement is true for the STENTOR satellite. 131  Similarly, the SIRIO satellite has been used by the Italian Navy for mobile communications, and SICRAL, an Italian multipurpose satellite, has been used for military purposes, national public security and civilian protection. 132  For its part, the United Kingdom has also manufactured dedicated satellites such as the SKYNET, which is a form of dedicated military communications network. Reports indicate that the United Kingdom is also developing a signals intelligent satellite called Zircon. 133 

      Graph I.2.2: Reported Military Satellite Launches 1985-1991 [non disponible]

      Intelligence = Imaging intelligence, electronic intelligence, naval intelligence, mapping and remote sensing, and weather satellites; Early-warning and Communications = Communications, navigation, and nuclear explosion detection; Satellite/Weapon Development = Ballistic missile development, ballistic missile defence, anti-tactic ballistic-missile defence, radar calibration, and geodetic; Other Missions = Space test programmes and minor military missions.

Source: Adapted from information published in the SIPRI Yearbook series (1986-1992)

      Some technologies have clearly been given more military priority than others during the period 1985-1991, as shown in Graph I.2.2. For this six-year period alone (for which data is available to the author), over 46% of the 700 military satellites placed in orbit were devoted to intelligence operations, with just under 42% concerning with early-warning and communications. Launches by the former USSR and the USA totaled almost 700--476 and 187, respectively - and no other country reached even double-digit launches during that period. As depicted in more detail in Graph I.2.3, the most active military applications have been intelligence imaging, representing 61.5% of all flights.


Graph I.2.3: Reported Intelligence Satellite Launches 1985-1991

Source: Adapted from information given in the SIPRI Yearbook series (1986-1992)

      The USSR devoted over two-thirds of its military intelligence activity to imaging satellites for the six-year period mentioned above while the USA emphasized naval intelligence, although they did strike a balance between imaging, electronic intelligence satellites, and weather applications. 134  China is the only other country to have reportedly launched imaging satellites. The military intelligence satellites launched by other countries have been limited to weather devices.

      In another area of activity, Graph I.2.4 shows how selective the launching of military satellites can be. It should be noted that the former USSR and the USA have launched an array of dedicated spacecraft as well as communication devices, notably early-warning and nuclear-explosion detection. To date, such devices have not been launched by any of the Level II EtSC States or EmSC States.

      Graph I.2.4: Reported Early-Warning and Communications Satellite Launches 1985-1991 [non disponible]

Source: Adapted from information published in the SIPRI Yearbook series (1986-1992)

      The technologies acquired by Level II EtSCs States has been internationally available, to at least some extent, for years. Technology transfer mostly occurs between major EtSC States. Even on the military side, entire BM systems have been sold internationally, as in the case of the British SLBMs. However, this did not happen with transfers to and from the former Soviet Union and countries then in the Soviet bloc. Co-operation in outer space and related activities between both Level I and Level II EtSC States is expanding and yesterday's potential enemies are emerging as tomorrow's probable partners. A new approach to co-operative programmes will therefore probably reshape the nature of the relationships between EtSC States.

      The priorities of the 1970s and 1980s are being revised to meet present requirements in Europe and growing financial constraints. Thus, communications (including broadcasting), observation (scientific research and Earth observation) satellites, probes for the Moon and also other planets, and man-in-space programmes involving, for example, space shuttles and permanent space stations have all been affected. A case in point is the international space station which is due to be completed in 2002 as the so- called Alpha configuration (see Figure I.2.13). 135 


Figure I.2.13: Artist View of the International Space Station (Alpha)

Courtesy of ESA, Photo ESA/D. Ducros

      In spite of these fundamental changes in perspective and behaviour, it is still uncertain as to how far co-operation between EtSC and EmSC States will develop in the future. While ad hoc and selective co-operation may still be envisaged, the dual-use nature of certain outer-space activities will, to some extent, condition comprehensive co-operation, particularly in the transfer of rocketry technology.

B. Emerging Space-Competent States: Technology-Recipient States

      In contrast to EtSC States, the Emerging Space-Competent States (EmSCs) have not yet mastered outer-space technology in all its aspects. Nevertheless they make considerable efforts to develop their qualified manufacturing capabilities. The number of EmSCs is small, but growing. Their major objective is to develop long-term political and development planning for autonomy, and eventually self-sufficiency, in highly specialized technology. This objective is also explained by a wish not to have to purchase American, Russian, European and, recently, Chinese or even Japanese spacewares, but to offer equipment and services in the international space market themselves.

      Among EmSCs are Argentina, Brazil, India, Israel, and Pakistan, although they are not all at the same level of development in space activities. Some EmSC States have already placed satellites in Earth orbit. Others are not so advanced but are already on the verge of testing indigenously-built space launchers. For example, India and Israel have already manufactured and launched sounding rockets and space launchers. Argentina and Brazil have still not developed launching technology, although they already operate satellites in Earth orbit. Nevertheless, with the exception of Argentina, all EmSC States have been seeking very intensively to close this gap.

1. The Quest to Reach Outer Space

      In many instances, the technology gap between established- and emerging-space-competent States is not necessarily due to a late start in outer space activities by EmSCs. Action in Argentina, for example, dates back to 1958, when sounding rockets were launched in the hills of Córdoba Province. 136  In 1960, a Presidential decree created the National Commission of Space Research (CNIE), 137  and rocket activity continued for 18 years. The CNIE, linked to the Secretariat for Science and Technology, also functioned under the auspices of the Air Force for over 30 years, although it was the Instituto de Investigaciones Aeronáuticas y Espaciales (IIAE) which served as the implementing agency for CNIE, by directing and developing a few specific rocketry programmes. The CNIE also participated, inter alia, in the EGANI, EXAMETNET, and EOLE projects in co-operation with companies from France, Germany, and the USA. 138  Experiments used sounding rockets to 400-km heights and involved Alfa Centaura, Orion, and Canopus rockets and balloons. In addition, indigenously-built Argentine rockets were also launched from the Wallops Station in the USA and from Peru and Antarctica. 139 

      In 1980, a propulsion systems project was created and the Alacran sounding rocket was developed. In addition, the CONDOR programme, also initiated in the early 1980s for the development of an indigenous sounding rocket, was perhaps the most important rocketry engagement undertaken by the CNIE. 140  CONDOR I was a sounding rocket and CONDOR II was expected to launch the Argentinean SAC-1 satellite. However, CNIE was replaced in March 1991 by the National Commission of Space Activities (CONAE), 141  which inherited most of the CNIE infrastructure and programmes including the CONDOR programme. By 1990, all Argentinian activity in sounding rockets and space launchers had ceased for political and economic reasons.

      Diagram I.2.A: Structure of Space Activity Institutions in Argentina [non disponible]

      In 1994, after its adherence to technology transfer controls, Argentina decided to produce a new generation of space launch vehicles. However, while considerable experience in sounding rockets has been acquired, it seems unlikely that Argentina will develop a space launch vehicle in less than a decade. Nonetheless, the new programme is planned to last from 1995 to 2006; 142  analysis and engineering design of a space vehicle for low-orbit launchers was due to begin in 1996 and last until the year 2000. Sub-system operation and testing were scheduled to run from 2001 to 2006 so that, if all goes well, it is expected that an Argentinian New Generation Space Vehicle (NGSV) could be operational within 10 years.

      Brazil has also been developing an industrial park in aeronautics and outer space since the creation, in 1961, of the Organizing Group of the National Commission for Space Activities (GOCNAE). 143  A sounding rocket programme initiated at the AVIBRAS Indústria Aeroespacial from 1965 to 1975 developed the SONDA rocket series--SONDA I, SONDA II-B and SONDA II-C. Reportedly, the SONDA programme utilized technology and components developed by both AVIBRAS and the Ministry of Aeronautics. 144  Starting in 1965, the two-stage SONDA I was used to test technology for solid propellants and short-range rockets, and over 200 SONDA I rockets were launched in a 12-year period . In 1966, work began on a single-stage SONDA II rocket for delivery of civil loads into earth orbit. SONDA II has also tested aerodynamic configuration and functioning during the separation stages. Since 1966, over 50 rockets have been launched in such areas as thermic protection, new propellants, aerodynamic configuration, and electronic components testing. 145 

      Work began on a two-stage SONDA III rocket for the study of magnetic anomaly in the South Atlantic in 1969 and over 20 of these rockets have been launched since then. In 1974, a bi-stage SONDA IV rocket was produced to test the major propulsion components of a future satellite launch vehicle (VLS), whose development was officially approved with the creation in 1981 of the Brazilian Complete Space Mission (MECB) programme. 146  The creation of the Brazilian Space Agency (BSA) in February 1994 and the approval of the Brazilian National Policy on the Development of Space Activities (PNDAE) in December of the same year endorsed the initial development of a space launcher. 147  The VLS has SONDA IV technology and uses a four-stage solid-propelled rocket. It is designed to place satellites weighing between 100 and 200 kg in a circular orbit of 250-1000 km (see Figure I.2.14). 148 


Figure I.2.14: Artist View of the SONDA Sounding Rockets and the VLS Space Launcher (Brazil)

Courtesy of CTA/IAE

      Different versions of SONDA rockets have been constructed for the VLS. Although the VLS-R1 failed a test flight in 1987 (reportedly because of gyroscope guidance technology problems), the VLS-R2 version subsequently completed a test flight successfully. In addition, a two-stage rocket, the VS-40, consisting of a combination of stages from existing sounding rockets, is under construction for propulsion tests in a vacuum chamber. Although there have been several delays in construction, the vehicle was fully mounted in 1996 and underwent tests at IAE (see Photo I.2.26). The first launch of the Brazilian VLS vehicle took place in 1997, resulting in a failure when the vehicle was destroyed a few moments after it was take off. The VLS programme is expected to continue and four other vehicles are scheduled to be built.

      Photo I.2.26: VLS Space Launcher Undergoing Test (Brazil) [non diposnible]

Courtesy of CTA/IAE

      Brazil is also considering the production of a second-generation space-launcher, the Light Space Transport [Transporte Espacial Leve] (TEL). 149  In 1995, a feasibility study was approved for a vehicle capable of launching a 500-kg satellite up to 2,000 km. The vehicle would consist of a Brazilian solid-propellant booster added to a main liquid-propellant rocket acquired abroad, and is expected to be developed with foreign assistance between 1997 and 2002. It is believed that the vehicle could be financially viable for launching prospective Brazilian and other small low-orbit satellites in the next 15 years. In addition, the need for communications satellites is encouraging the development of a more-powerful vehicle to place satellites in geostationary orbit. Such a project could generate additional revenue and make the country's space launch site a more financially viable investment.

      In Israel, another EmSC State, activity related to outer space began in 1966 with the creation of the Space Research Institute at Tel-Aviv University. 150  Seventeen years later, in 1983, the Israel Space Agency (ISA) was set up under the Ministry of Science and Technology, since then outer-space-qualified launching capabilities for low Earth orbits have been developed.

      Unlike the Brazilian SLV, the Israeli booster has already made successful space launches. The launcher, called Shavit or Comet (see Photo I.2.27), reportedly originates from the solid propelled, one-stage, road-mobile Jericho missile, which is itself a product of French/Israeli co-operation in the late 1960s. 151  After the 1967 War, further development of the Jericho series is said to have become indigenous, and it was then that the Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) would have introduced a second stage to the road-mobile missile's body, thus creating Jericho II BM, which enhanced both the range and payload capacity. 152  After different versions of Jericho II, Israel produced Jericho III, although the Shavit space launcher is believed to have inherited most of its technical characteristics from Jericho II. A third stage was added to the vehicle which constitutes the present configuration of the space launcher. The first- generation of the Shavit space launcher was launched three times, in 1988, 1990, and 1995, respectively.


Photo I.2.27: SHAVIT Space Launcher (Israel)

Courtesy of the Israeli Aircraft Industries International INC

      A new generation launcher designed for the international market is reportedly under consideration. 153  Analysts believe that Israel's bid to enter this market may also seek international co-operation to provide different rocket motors or stages for a multinationally-built launcher. Such commercial strategies are part of a trend being pursued by both established- and emerging-space-competent States, with the objective to provide services for the demand to launch small satellites in the next century.

      Another EmSC State of interest is India, its outer space programme has focused on sounding-rocket and space-launcher capabilities from the mid-1960s onwards. 154  One important development was the establishment of the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) at Thumba, Thiruvananthapuram, which concentrates on indigenous sounding-rockets, space-launchers, and associated technologies, 155  including the Rohini (RH) rocket. The first rocket in this series, the RH-75, was launched in 1967 and there has been continuous development of follow-on versions. For instance, the RH-200 Single Stage Version (SSV) rocket has been successfully tested and another version--the RH-200 Dual Trust (DT) motor--was developed. Work on an even more advanced version, the RH-300, has been completed and is available for scientific experiments. However, at one point the flight of India's most advanced sounding-rocket, the RH-560, was said to be unsatisfactory, but scaled-down requirements have shown the rocket to be effective and it is therefore extensively used. 156  All RH rockets use solid propellent.

      Development of space launchers has been undertaken by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) at its Trivandrum facility and includes four rocket types designated as Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-3), Augmented Satellite Launch Vehicle (ASLV), Geostationary Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV), and Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) (see Table I.2.5). 157  India's first indigenous space-launcher, the SLV-3, made four experimental flights between 1979 and 1983, the first (in 1979) being a failure but those in1980, 1981, and 1983 were considered as partly or fully successful. However, the SLV space-launcher is no longer being manufactured.

      There were other problems, such as the flight failures of the ASLV-D1 rocket in 1987 and the ASLV-D2 in 1988. After modification, an ASLV-D3 successfully placed a 110-kg Rohini satellite in orbit on 20 May 1992. The ASLV-D4 was also successfully launched two years later, on 4 May 1994, injecting a SROSS-C2 113-kg satellite into a near-Earth orbit (see Photo I.2.28). 158  While the ASLV-D4 has not yet been officially declared operational, it has been designed to prove a number of technologies that are required for PSLV and the GSLV missions: "[all the objectives of the ASLV programme have been realised." 159  It was therefore launched as an evaluation test flight to analyse, inter alia, (a) its performance in placing a satellite in low-Earth orbit (close to 500 km); (b) its closed-loop guidance system; and (c) its four-stage spin-up system. 160 

      In the case of the PSLV, however, the technology is quite different from the SLV-3 and the ASLV series, with the exception of the strap-on boosters. In fact, the four- stage rocket uses both SLV-3 solid-fuel boosters and Ariane technology liquid fuel motors. 161  The first PSLV flight, on 30 September 1993, failed owing to "... an error in the implementation of on-board software." 162  The second, the PSLV-D2, was launched on 15 October 1994 and successfully placed an Indian remote-sensing satellite in orbit (see Photo I.2.29). 163 

      Photo I.2.28: ASLV-D4 Space Launcher (India) [non diponible]

Courtesy of ISRO

      Photo I.2.29: PSLV Space Launcher (India) [non diponsible]

Courtesy of ISRO

      In respect of geostationary rockets, the GSLV configuration derives from the PSLV launcher. GSLV vehicles should replace the six solid-propellant strap-on boosters of the PSLV with four liquid strap-on motors. The third and fourth stages of the PSLV (solid and liquid fuel stages) are replaced by a single cryogenic fuel stage. 164  Manufacturing of the rocket system, sub-systems, and motors are were completed and the first flight test in October 1994 was successful.

      Last but not least is the rocketry research being undertaken by Pakistan. It began in 1961 with the establishment of the country's Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Committee. 165  A major Pakistani sounding-rocket programme was the construction of a vehicle using a mixture of indigenous and imported technology, the latter originating mostly from NASA, CNES, and BNSC [British National Space Centre] in the early 1960s. 166  For example, the first Pakistani sounding-rocket, the REHBAR-I, was launched from its Flight Test Range (FTR) at Sonmiani on 7 June 1962. 167  The construction of the SUPARCO Plant in 1968 168  provided Pakistan with facilities for building sounding-rockets and instrumentation for rocket-borne and ground-based applications. The first reported Pakistani-built sounding-rocket, a two-stage solid-propellant rocket named REHNUMA-1, was launched in 1969 from the FTR. This rocket was capable of carrying a 35-kg payload up to 160 km. A heavier version, although also a two-stage solid-propellant vehicle, the SHAHPAR, boosted Pakistani sounding-rocket capability to a 55-kg payload up to 450 km.

      Pakistan's sounding-rocket programme consists of four main missions using different configurations of its SHAHPAR vehicle (see Photo I.2.30). 169  One is used to study wind structures by reaching altitudes between 20 and 65 km. A second mission consists of launching a sounding-rocket with a dozen grenades which are ejected at altitudes between 25 and 60 km and exploded at pre-determined heights for studies on wind speed, temperature, and pressure. The third mission involves the launching of sounding-rockets to an altitude between 90 and 135 km to compute wind speed and direction, and a fourth mission will eject sodium vapours at altitudes between 200 and 400 km, also for atmospheric studies. In addition to these missions, Pakistan is also capable of lifting "... scientific payloads weighing 30-50 kg to altitudes up to 500 km". 170 


Photo: I.2.30: SHAHPAR Sounding Rocket (Pakistan)

Courtesy of SUPARCO

      Official documents make no mention of any intention by Pakistan to develop space-launcher capability. However, experts in the West believe that Pakistan does intend to lift light to medium-size satellites into low Earth orbits. The first launch of a three-stage rocket meeting these parameters reportedly took place in 1989.

Table I.2.5: Select Sounding Rocket/Space Launcher Technology Development by EmSC States
Country/ Rocket Rocket/Function ropulsion Type Capability(kg) Development Stage
Alacran 1 stage, SR Solid 250-300 km Cancelled
CONDOR I 1 stage, SR Solid 50 kg to 400 km Cancelled
NGSV     Low orbit A&C/FS
SONDA I 2 stages, SR Solid 60-75 km Operational
SONDA II 1 stage, SR Solid 70 kg to 100 km Operational
SONDA III 2 stages, SR Solid 50-80 kg to 500 km 130-160 kg to 300 km Operational
SONDA IV 2 stages, SR, SL Solid 500 kg to 600 km R&D
VS40 2 stages, SR Solid 60 km R&D
VLS 4 stages, SL Solid 200 kg to 1 000 km R&D
TEL   Solid & Liquid 500 kg to 2000 km A&C/FS
RH-75 SR      
RH-125 SR      
RH-200 2 stages, SR Solid 10 kg to 80 km Operational
RH-200 DT, SSV SR      
RH-300 1 stage, SR Solid 50 kg to 140 km Operational
Country/ Rocket Rocket/Function Propulsion Type Capability
RH-300 MK-II 1 stage, SR Solid 58 kg to 58 km  
RH-560 2 stages, SR Solid 100 kg to 350 km Operational
M-100 SR      
SLV-3 4 stages, SL Solid 40 kg to 400 km Discontinued
ASLV-D1, D2, D3, D4 5 stages, SL Solid 150 kg to 400 km R&D
PSLV-D1, D2, D3 4 stages, SL Solid: 1,3 stages
Liquid: 2,4 stages
1 000-900 km Spo R&D
GSLV 3 stages, SL Solid, cryogenic 2 500 to GSTo R&D
Shavit 3 stages, SL Solid 156-250 kg to 1 000 km Operational
NGSV 3 stages, SL Solid 300 kg to Spo A&C/FS
REHBAR-I 2 stages, SR Solid   Discontinued
REHNUMA 2 stages, SR Solid 35 kg up to 160 km Discontinued
SHAHPAR 1 stages, SR
stages, SR
Solid 135 km
55 kg to 450 km
30-50 kg to 200-500 km
(SLV) 3 stages, SL Solid. Low orbit R&D

      ¶ = Estimates made when launched from the Palmachim site and directed westward against the Earth's gravitational pull; A&C/FS = Analysis and Conception phase or Feasibility Study; ASLV = Augmented Satellite Launch Vehicle; ESCSs = Emerging Space-competent States; GSLV = Geostationary Satellite Launch Vehicle; GSTo = Geosynchronous transfer orbit; PSLV = Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle; NGSV = New Generation Space Vehicle; RH = Rohini; SLV = Satellite Launch Vehicle; Spo = Sun-Synchronous Polar orbit; SR = Sounding Rocket; SL = Space Launcher; VLS = Veiculo Lançador de Satélites; .. = Data unavailable; () = Not confirmed.

Source = Data compiled by the author partly in the light of information given in Aaron Karp, "Ballistic Missile Proliferation", World Armaments and Disarmament, SIPRI Yearbook: 1991, SIPRI, Oxford University Press, 1991; "Brazilian Space Program",Centro Técnico Aeroespacial, Instituto de Atividades Espaciais Brochure, Ministry of Aeronautics, Department of Research and Development, São José dos Campos; Brazilian Space Program: Sounding Rockets and Satellite Launcher Vehicle, Aerospace Technical Centre, Ministry of Aeronautics, São José dos Campos; 1991-92 Annual Report, Government of India, Department of Space, Institute of Space Research Organization, Bangalore, 1992; Space India, Volume I, Publication of the Indian Space Research Organisation, January-March 1988; Atlas de Géographie de L'Espace, op. cit., p. 93; John Simpson, Philip Acton and Simon Crowe, "The Israeli Satellite Launch: Capabilities, intentions and implications", Space Policy, vol. 5, No. 2, May 1989, pp. 117-128; Salim Mehmud, "Pakistan's Space Programme", Space Policy, vol. 5, No. 8, August 1989, pp. 217-225; and others.

      The above discussion clearly shows that it is difficult to compare the history EmSC States' sounding-rocket and space-launching activities with that of the major space-faring nations. Nevertheless, EmSC States do have, overall, significant rocketry experience, but it is difficult to ascertain the total number of sounding-rocket activities that these States have carried out so far. However, as Graph I.2.5 illustrates, sounding-rocket activities were expected to remain constant between 1994 and the year 2000 for all of these countries. Although this forecast depended greatly on the evolution of experimental scientific demands (which changes rapidly according to needs), it is interesting to note that India was expected to lead these countries with a planned 20 launches a year which, in one way, is indicative of the country's active effort to develop outer-space technologies. Taken together, the EmSC States reported here were expected to launch at least 26 sounding-rockets a year, giving a total of over 180 launches between 1994 and the year 2000.


Graph I.2.5: Select EmSC States Successful Sounding Rocket Launches and Forecast (1994-2000)

Source: Adapted from data provided by the space organizations of the countries concerned

      Unlike sounding-rockets, past and future space launches are easier to calculate so that projections can be much more accurate. Accordingly, Graph I.2.6 shows the space-launching activities already undertaken by EmSC States and a projection of what they are expected to do between 1995 and the year 2000. This graph highlights three important facts. First, EmSC States activity is still quite recent. Second, future trends predict a quantitative increase in both the launches themselves and the total number of States involved. While three countries made six launches between 1980 and 1991 (i.e., 11 years), it is predicted that four countries will carry out 16 launches in just over 5 years which is undoubtedly a quantum jump in launching activities by EmSC States.

      Thirdly, among the EmSC States, India is also in the lead in space launching. It was expected to carry out twice as many launches as Brazil and more than any of the reported forecasts for any other EmSC State. It should also be noted that, on aggregate, when the number of expected launches from 1995 until the end of the present decade is added to sounding-rocket activity, the total number of rocket launches forecast for that period is considerable: 200.


Graph I.2.6: Number of EmSC States Successful Launches and Forecast (1980-2000)

Source: Adapted from data provided by the space organizations of the countries concerned

      Unlike the major space-faring nations, EmSCs have few rocket launch-sites - about ten in all. Argentina has operated from two launch-sites: one, named Galopus, and the other, the Falda del Carmen, situated in the Province of Córdoba. The latter site was restored in 1995, but since Argentina no longer has an operational rocketry programme, neither of these sites is scheduled for further space activity. Nevertheless, if at least one of the country's national launching bases were modified to meet launching standards, Argentina could still be able to provide launching services on the international market.

      Brazil operates two launching-sites. 171  One is the Air Force's "Barreira do Inferno" - Hell's Barrier - installation near the city of Natal in the State of Rio Grande do Norte, which was previously used as a SONDA rocket test-site and still used for foreign rocket launching. However, for different technical and institutional reasons, it will not be used to launch VLS rockets for commercial purposes, and this has led to the construction of the Alcântara Launch Centre (CLA), a new launch-site in the State of Maranhão.

      India operates the TERLS sounding-rocket launch centre in South India and another, the Balasore Range, in the northwestern part of the country. India also operates a space launch-site called the Sriharikota Space Centre (SHAR), about 100 km north of Madras in the Bay of Bengal. SHAR is used for launching remote-sensing and communications satellites, as well as the production of solid propellants for space launchers. In addition, launch ranges at Balasore and Thumba are used by SHAR for space launches. Israel operates a launching site at Palmachim, a military base south of Tel-Aviv. Pakistan launches its sounding-rockets from the Flight Test Range (FTR), situated approximately 50 km northwest of Karachi at Sonmiani Beach on the shores of the Arabian Sea.

      Developing, testing, and launching sounding rockets and space boosters is closely related to R&D on BMs. In contrast to the EtSC States which have used BM technology to develop most of their space boosters, EmSC States have generally inversed this policy so that their BM programmes are usually the product of space-booster technology. This is apparently the case with the Argentinian CONDOR rocket, which often appears in the specialized literature under the BM heading. Indeed, it has been reported that Argentina developed the CONDOR II missile in 1984 from the CONDOR I sounding rocket. 172  This was seen by many other States as ballistic missile proliferation, not only because the development of the CONDOR II was launched under the auspices of the Air Force, but also because details on its progress and finance were largely placed under a veil of military-like secrecy. Nevertheless, the Argentinian Government has maintained that it was developing a space booster and not a missile.

      CONDOR I's first public appearance was at the Paris Bourget Air and Space show in 1985. The rocket had a special guidance system and was able to propel 50 kg up to a distance of 400 km. The follow-up CONDOR II version, however, was believed by different experts actually to be a two-stage missile with solid and liquid-propelled motors capable of reaching up to 600 km with a 500-kg payload. It was also a mobile missile using a Wegman-type launching base, but it is thought that it was never actually launched. A third missile, the CONDOR II Plus, was capable of doubling the distance carrying the same payload (see Table I.2.6).

      By 1988, the CONDOR project had run into budgetary problems and Argentina started work on a joint missile project with Egypt. After encountering technical problems and international pressure, President Menem's Government decided to halt the CONDOR programme and announced its legal termination in April 1990. 173  However, some CONDOR II tubes were found in Iraq during the 1991 Gulf War. These were thought to be filled with propulsion material, but the Argentinians argued that they were actually maquettes filled with sugar which had been delivered to Egypt, not Iraq. The discovery gave extra impetus to MTCR members, the USA in particular, to call for the destruction of the Argentinian missiles and their means of production. While Argentina found no difficulty with the elimination of the missiles and their accessories, the destruction of its industrial assets did create a problem and it took considerable high level negotiations to reevaluate the initial idea. The missiles and their parts (filled and empty tubes, liquid stages, etc.) were sent by cargo ship to a NATO base in Spain, since when their whereabouts are unknown.

      Thus, Argentina's missile production capability was brought to an end. New efforts are underway to develop a new generation of space vehicle which should, inter alia, ensure "...full transparency..." 174  and be "...in accordance with Argentinian policies on non-proliferation and with the international commitments [it has] assumedðin this matter", "ðrejecting any military offensive use of space activities." 175 

      BM R&D in Brazil has apparently also followed the space booster-to-BM route, developments in the SONDA rocket series being frequently related to private developments regarding BMs. 176  The most controversial missile projects suspected to benefit from SONDA technology were the AVIBRAS SS series (SS-150, SS-300, and SS-1000) and the ORBITA Sistemas Aeroespaciais, S.A., MB series (MB/EE-150, MB/EE-300, MB/EE-600, and MB/EE-1000). Because of the experience and credibility AVIBRAS enjoys in the field of military rocketry, many analysts expected that the SS-300 and the SS-1000 could have been the first Brazilian short- and mid-range ballistic missiles. However, all of the missile projects from both of the above-mentioned companies that were suspected of being SONDA-technology based were either cancelled or temporarily suspended (see Table I.2.6), reportedly because of a shortage of finance and confirmed orders. 177 

      India is another EmSC State where the civil space effort has been reported to have received some spin-off from on military programmes, despite the fact that the Indian civil and military programmes are run by distinct agencies operating under different civil and military ministries. This is particularly true in the case of the AGNI missile, 178  which is a two-stage solid- and liquid-propelled rocket produced by the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP) by the Indian Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL) of the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO). It is a nuclear-capable, intermediate-range ballistic missile, with a first solid-fuelled stage which is said to be similar to the SLV-3 space launcher. 179  In addition, the missile's on-board computer-guided technology was also reported in the mid-90s to be similar to that used in the Indian launch vehicle. 180  The spin-off argument is further strengthened by the fact that Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, former director of the SLV-3 rocket programme, became Director of the IGMDP at Hyderabad in June 1982, and the AGNI missile programme was initiated shortly thereafter.

      The AGNI missile was successfully flight tested on 22 May 1989, but a second launch failed owing to premature ignition of the second liquid stage. Although problems were reported in connection with a third flight on 19 January 1994 at the Chandipur-on-Sea test range in Orissa, the test seems to have successfully validated the missile's re-entry technology, in that the missile's stage separation system and an advanced manoeuvring-type warhead are said to have been tracked by radar until it hit its target at sea 1200 km into the Bay of Bengal. 181  The development flights of Prithvi, a single-stage rocket propelled with liquid-fuel were successful as from 1988. Final approval for mass production of the Prithvi (SS-150) was given by the Indian Government in March 1994. 182  Prithvi was believed to be an operational missile in the mid-to-late 1990s. It is reported that a test flight of a longer version of the Prithvi missile was successfully made in 1996. 183  It was launched from a test site on the Orissa coast into the Bay of Bengal and noted in newspapers as being the fifteenth in a series since 1988 and to have boosted the vehicle's range beyond 160 km.

      Several military analysts believe that Pakistan's missile development originates, in part, from its sounding rocket facilities, but this development is not entirely indigenous and may also derive from Chinese, French, or Soviet technologies. 184  The French sounding rockets Dauphin, Dragon III, and the Eridan, and the Chinese ship-to shore missile SL-2, in particular, are presumed to be involved. Pakistan is believed to be developing three missiles in the designated Hatf missile family, each with different performances and ranges. The first in the series, Hatf-1, is a single-stage, short-range nuclear-capable rocket. The other two, Haft-2 and 3, are both two-stage, ballistic trajectory rockets believed to be nuclear-capable - particularly Haft-3, which is estimated to have an 800-km range with a 500-kg payload. 185  While Haft-1 is believed to have been operationally deployed as of 1992, Haft-2 is reportedly still under development. Research and development on Haft-3 are apparently still at the design and configuration stage and the missile is not expected to be operational or deployed before the late-1990s.

      However, although Pakistan seems to have acquired BM technology, it is generally believed that the country has sufficient facilities to manufacture only a limited quantity of Haft 1 and 2 missiles. Nevertheless, it is also thought that the industry itself requires further development before production on a large scale can be envisaged--for example, the manufacture of critical raw materials for propellant production and major testing of the rocket motors and the missiles themselves. 186 

Table I.2.6: Select Sounding Rocket/Space Launcher Technologies-Derived Missile Developments by EmSC States
No. of
Capability & Range
Stage of
CONDOR I 1 Solid 50 kg to 400 km Cancelled
CONDOR II 2 Solid, liquid 500 kg to 600 km Cancelled
CONDOR II Plus 2 Solid, liquid 500 kg to 1000/1100 km Cancelled
SS-150 1 Solid 150 km Suspended
SS-300 1 Solid 300 km Suspended
SS-1000   Solid 1000 km Suspended
MB/EE-150   Solid 150 km Suspended
MB/EE-300   Solid 300 km Suspended
MB/EE-600   Solid 600 km Suspended
MB/EE-1000   Solid 1,000 km Suspended
Prithvi 1 Liquid 1,000 kg to 250 km In service (1994)ð
Agni 2 Solid, Liquid 1,000 kg to 2,500 km Under development
Haft-1 1 Solid 500 kg to 60 km In service (1992)ð
Haft-2 2 Solid 500 kg to 280 km Under development
Haft-3 2 Solid 500 kg to 800 km Under development

      ¶= All missile payload capabilities and ranges are based on estimates from various sources; ð= Estimated deployment year.

Source = Data compiled by the author partly from information given in Chandrashekar, S., "An Assessment of Pakistan's Missile Programme", unpublished, 1992; Aaron Karp, "Ballistic Missile Proliferation", World Armaments and Disarmament, SIPRI Yearbook: 1991, SIPRI, Oxford University Press, 1991, p. 337; Vivek Raghuvanshi, "Prithvi Gives India Non-Nuclear Punch", Defense News, 7-13 March 1994, p. 12; The Nonproliferation Review, Spring-Summer 1994, vol. 1, No. 3, Monterey: Monterey Institute of International Studies, 1994, pp. 84-7; and others.

      As discussed above, the development of BMs in Israel, in contrast to other EmSC States, is said to have been the origin of the country's space booster. In addition to the five EmSC States already mentioned, other States, or private companies, with a lower technology level, are identified as having made links between space launch programmes and BM development. Africa and the Middle East are the regions where such links have been most evident--for example, space boosters and BMs in South Africa, which are reportedly linked to equipment and technology supplied by Israel. 187 

      In the case of Iraq, however, the alleged existence of a launcher programme, which pre-dated the 1991 Gulf War, appeared to be a mixture of missile and space booster technologies. 188  Some analysts argue that Iraq has never had a fully-fledged civilian space-launch programme. Others maintain that Iraq did have space-launcher ambitions. This latter argument is often sustained by the test launch of the so-called Tamouz 1 space launcher in 1989 from the Al Anbar Launch Centre. Apparently, Tamouz 1 was a triple-stage liquid-propelled rocket, which reportedly used the first stage of the Al Aabed missile. 189 

      Photo I.2.31: UNSCOM Inspection of Destroyed Ballistic Missiles (Iraq) [non disponible]

Courtesy of the United Nations, Photo 159121 / H. Arvidsson

      However, the Gulf War had two major repercussions on Iraq's ability to develop space launch capability. One was the Allied bombing of Iraq's industrial complex. The impact of the war on Iraq's rocket launch manufacturing capability should not be seen only as a matter of hardware destruction, but also from the standpoint of Iraq's capability to access capital for both rocketry and non-rocketry-related investment

      The second impact on Iraq's launch development programme is the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 687. 190  Its objective is the destruction or neutralization of all of Iraq's BMs whose range is more than 150 km, and all principal BM components as well as their production and maintenance installations. Accordingly, both Iraq itself and the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) have destroyed items used or intended for use in prohibited missile activities.

      Photo I.2.32: Chemical Agent Missile Warhead Sampling (Iraq) [non disponible]

Courtesy of the United Nations, Photo 158637 / Shankar Kunhambu

      For example, Iraq has announced the unilateral destruction of several BMs and this has been verified by UNSCOM inspectors, as may be seen from Photo I.2.31 which shows a UN inspection team looking at the remains of BMs destroyed by Iraq. Iraq has also said that it has destroyed Al-Hussein chemical-fill missile warheads. Photo I.2.32 shows an Iraqi worker in protective gear climbing into a chemical agent missile warhead so that the warhead can be opened for sampling by UNSCOM inspectors. The UNSCOM team also verified the destruction of missile launchers, decoy missiles, decoy missile launchers and missile support vehicles (see Photos I.2.33 and 34).


Photo I.2.33: Destroyed Decoy SCUD Launcher (Iraq)

Courtesy of the United Nations, Photo 159167 / H. Arvidsson

      The UNSCOM team has also supervised and verified the destruction of production equipment and buildings associated with the BM programme, such as madrels used in the production of solid fuel and rocket propellent for the BADR 2000 BM, and material used in the production of BM nozzles. Inspection of the destruction of solid propellant mixer storage facilities and missile-motor case preparation buildings was also carried out, as shown in Photos I.2.34 and 35.


Photo I.2.34: Destroyed Ballistic Missile Fuel and Oxidizer Vehicles (Iraq)

Courtesy of the United Nations, Photo 159169 / H. Arvidsson

      Photo I.2.35: Destroyed Missile-motor Case Preparation Building (Iraq) [non disponible]

Courtesy of the United Nations, Photo 159127 / H. Arvidsson

      Surveillance cameras have been installed at various missile test facilities for long-term monitoring, and in view of the complexity and time span needed to develop rocket- launch production, Iraq is not expected to possess such capability until well into the next century.


Photo I.2.36: Destroyed Solid Rocket Propellant Mixer Storage (Iraq)

2. Satellite Capabilities

      Satellite R&D is another area in which EmSC States have made considerable technological progress. However, it should be noted that, unlike their rocketry activities, most of the EmSC States did not start national R&D programmes until the 1980s. For example, although Argentina initiated satellite activities under CNIE auspices at the beginning of the decade, it was only in 1988 that a project known as SAC-1 (Scientific Applications Satellite-1) was set up with the aim of developing a small scientific satellite for placement in orbit by an American SCOUT rocket. 191  SAC-1 later became the SAC-B project where CONAE and NASA developed a scientific satellite to carry both Argentinian and American scientific devices. CONAE's role was to build the platform and structure and to operate the ground segment. 192  SAC-B was expected to stay in orbit for three years, but the satellite which was launched by the Pegasus launcher October 1996 remained attached to the last stage of the launcher.


Photo I.2.37: SAC-B Satellite (Argentina)

Courtesy of CONAE

      In 1994, there was a major shift in Argentina's space activities when the CONAE proposal for an 11-year National Space Plan (1995-2006) was adopted. 193  The plan endorses the SAC project and includes remote sensing and communications missions. Three satellites (SAC-C, D, and E) were scheduled to be manufactured and launched in 1998, 2001, and 2004, respectively. 194  For remote sensing, SAC-C and D will carry Multi Spectral-Medium-Resolutions Scanner (MMRS) cameras, although the exact resolution is not yet known. A series of communications satellites are also due to be launched early in the new millennium: SAOCOM-1 [Satellites for Observation and Communications] in 2000, SAOCOM-2 in 2003, and SAOCOM-3 in 2006. Some of these will also carry radar systems. 195  Other plans include the possible development of the SABIA Earth observation satellite with Brazil and the CESAR spacecraft with Spain.

      In Brazil, indigenous satellite development also began at the beginning of the 1980s. Four satellites are to be designed, developed, integrated, tested, and operated by the National Institute for Space Research (INPE) 196  within the MECB programme. 197  Two of these four satellites are designed to collect environmental data 198 --the SCD1 (see Photo 1.44) and SCD2 [Data Collecting Satellite or SCD]--and the other two will conduct remote-sensing operations--the SSR1 and SSR2 [Remote Sensing of the Earth or SSR]. 199  Although scheduled for 1989, delay in completing the Brazilian VLS meant that the SCD1 launch by an American Pegasus rocket had to be postponed until February 1993. The SCD2, which contained several design and component innovations, was also ready for launch before the completion of the Brazilian space launcher. The SCD2 satellite was lost during the unsuccessful flight of the VLS in 1997.

      In addition to the SSR1 and SSR2 series, further remote-sensing activity was envisaged after Brazil concluded an agreement, on 6 July 1988, with the People's Republic of China--the China-Brazil Earth Resources Satellites (CBERS)--to set up a programme of co-operation which included, inter alia, the development of two Earth imaging satellites. 200  CBERS 1 is expected to provide spatial resolutions between 20 and 260 m with three different sensors, one of which is a 20-m CCD [Charge Coupled Device] sensor. A second is an 80-m Infra-Red Multispectral Scanner (IR-MSS) for panchromatic and medium infra-red bands with 160 m for the thermal band. And the third is a Wide-Field Imager (WFI)--260 m. 201  The agreement called for CBERS 1 to be launched by a Long March Chinese rocket from the Shanxi launch-site and the satellite should have an expected lifespan of approximately two years to be replaced by the CBERS 2 spacecraft.

      The approval of a feasibility study of CBERS C and D may ensure the future of the series. Of particular importance are the optical sensors are these satellites, which would have image resolutions in the order of 1-2 m. 202  Other objectives in achieving indigenous satellite production capability include R&D in such areas as inertial platforms and gyroscopes, and atmospheric re-entry. 203  In addition, a programme has been approved under which Brazilian and American institutions will provide a radar satellite to look after environmental issues in the Amazon region. 204 

      Photo I.2.38: Data-Collecting Satellite 1 (Brazil) [non disponible]

Courtesy of INPE

      With regard to communications satellites, the purpose of the ECO-8 project is to manufacture and launch 8-10 (two spares) small spacecraft by the planned TEL vehicle. 205  The ECO-8 concept was conceived to cover an equatorial area of approximately 2000 km encompassing not only Brazil but also parts of Africa, Australia, and Asia. In all, the project was designed to launch a constellation of 32 small satellites during 14 years. ECO-8 was also expected to be merged with the American Bell Atlantic International and Constellation Communications, Inc. (CCI) System to form the Equatorial Constellation Communications (ECCO) system of 12 spacecraft, which would also enlarge the reach of the original satellite constellation. 206 


Photo I.2.39: OFEQ Experimental Satellite (Israel)

Courtesy of the Israeli Aircraft Industries International INC

      Three generations of spacecraft have been developed in Israel, 207  the first being an indigenous experimental satellite. A joint ISA/IAI venture drew up the OFEQ satellite programme, which led to the launching of the first Israeli-built spacecraft, the 156-kg OFEQ-1 or Horizon-1, on 19 September 1988 by a Shavit rocket. The satellite remained in orbit for three months testing the functional ability of its sub-systems and providing Israel with qualified platform design for follow-on generations. The second Israeli satellite, the OFEQ-2, was launched, again by a Shavit rocket, on 3 April 1990 and remained in orbit until July. 208  The Advanced OFEQ satellites are scientific spacecraft which conduct various experiments in the outer space environment and unlike the short life-span of their predecessors they are expected to remain in orbit for several years


Photo I.2.40: AMOS Satellite (Israel)

Courtesy of the Israeli Aircraft Industries International INC

      Third generation technology is concerned with the development of geostationary communications and reconnaissance satellites. One such satellite, approved in June 1989, and developed by the IAI, is the AMOS communications satellite. AMOS was launched on 16 of May 1996. A second spacecraft is the Israeli Institute of Technology's TECHSAT satellite. This was launched--unsuccessfully--by a Russian Start-1 rocket on 28 March 1994 and the satellite was lost. 209  OFEQ-3, a R&D and reconnaissance spacecraft, was launched by an Israeli launcher on 5 April 1995. 210 

      Pakistan is also involved in R&D on satellite programmes, although to a much lesser degree than the other EmSC States. The main objective is to be able to design and build small communication and remote-sensing satellites, 211  hence Pakistan's efforts to indigenously design and develop the country's first spacecraft--BADR-1. A light-weight (70-kg) scientific satellite for experimental communication, the BADR-1 was launched by a Chinese CZ-E2 rocket on 16 July 1990 and remained operational for 35 days. Another programme for a small second-generation satellite (50 kg), for low Earth orbit applications, the BADR-B, was developed. 212  The BADR-B carried a CCD Earth imager to operate at an altitude of about 800 km.

      A second programme, focused on telecommunications and television broadcasting, is the Domestic Communication Satellite System (PAKSAT), a project backed by private industry. Originally, it was to manufacture and launch two satellites positioned in geostationary orbit, one active, the other with in-orbit spare status. 213  However, little information is available on the development of PAKSAT's present architecture.


Photo I.2.41: BADR-1 Satellite with its Ejection Mechanism (Pakistan)

Courtesy of SUPARCO

      Other satellite activities include SUPARCO's operation of satellite ground-stations; 214  the one at Islamabad receives LANDSAT, SPOT, and NOAA [the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration] data. Pakistan is also actively involved in international projects such as the ARGOS Network and the COSPAS-SAT programme. SUPARCO is also active in radio and optical tracking.

      Because India started satellite R&D in the 1970s, it has the most diversified programme of all the EmSC States in both the number and type of spacecraft produced. 215  India placed the Rohini Satellite 1 (RS-1) in orbit in 1980, the RS-2 in 1981, and the RS-3 in 1983. First-generation Indian satellites belong to the Indian National Satellite (INSAT) series, and the first such craft, INSAT-1B, developed by the American Ford Aerospace Company, was launched with a US STS in 1983, although operated by Indian ground facilities. Its successor, the INSAT-1C was launched in 1988 but, for technical reasons, became inoperable in the same year. The INSAT-1 series ended with the launch by Ariane of INSAT-1D in June 1990.


Figure I.2.15: Artist View of the INSAT-2B Satellite (India)

Courtesy of ISRO

      The new generation of Indian satellites consists of INSAT-2, the Indian Remote-Sensing Satellite (IRS), and the Stretched Rohini Satellite Series (SROSS), all of which are indigenously-built spacecraft. 216  The launching of the INSAT-2A on 10 July 1992 by an Ariane booster marked a major milestone in the ISRO programme. INSAT-2A is a multipurpose satellite carrying high-power S-band TV transponders, 18 C-band transponders, and a very high resolution meteorological radiometer. 217  INSAT-2B carried instruments similar to its predecessor when launched by Ariane on 23 July 1993. More-advanced follow-on spacecraft such as the INSAT-2C, INSAT-2D and INSAT-2E are being developed and plans for a third generation (INSAT-3) have been announced. These are all planned to be launched by an Indian GSLV vehicle.

      Development of indigenous remote-sensing capability, including synthetic aperture radar, has been considerable. The IRS-1A [Indian Remote Sensing] was launched by a Soviet Proton rocket in March 1988, and the follow-on IRS-1B in August 1991 by a Vostok vehicle. Both satellites carried a Liner Imaging Self-Scanner (LISS-II), which operates in the visible and near infra-red regions of the optical spectrum. A third version, the IRS-1E, was lost through PSLV launch failure in September 1993. IRS-P2 (Photo 1.50), which carries an Earth imager with similar capability, was successfully launched on 15 October 1994 by an Indian rocket. The second generation IRS-1C and IRS-1D was launched in late-1997. The IRS-C is much more advanced than its predecessors and has a spatial resolution of 5.8 m, thereby privileging India in the commercial imagery market.

      However, the SROSS programme has encountered misfortune unrelated to the satellite's performance. The SROSS-A and SROSS-B, for example, were victims of failures by the ASLV space launcher, although the rocket successfully placed an SROSS-C2 in orbit in May 1994.

      As shown in Table I.2.7, EmSC States have overall developed (or are on the verge of doing so) satellite manufacturing capability for different applications, giving priority to communications and Earth observation. Other technologies, such as environmental monitoring and ground-based tracking, are also quite promising which, coupled with launching vehicles, has propelled the EmSC countries on to the international commercial market. However, this also causes concern about military activity and possible dual use.

      Photo I.2.42: IRS3-P2 Satellite (India) [non disponible]

Courtesy of ISRO

Table I.2.7: EmSC States - Satellite and Related Manufacturing Capabilities
Country Satellite Applications
Meteo-rology Scientific/Test Environ-
mental Data
Argentina # #   @   o
Brazil # @ @   @ &
India @ @ @     &
Israel @ @   @   o
Pakistan @ @   @    
¶= Some satellites and their corresponding launch and tracking sites are not given owing to the absence of official State acknowledgment; @= At least one spacecraft (a) has been developed or (b) is under development; #= Development programme approved; ð= Related technology being developed; o= One ground-to-space tracking station; &= Two or more ground-to-space tracking stations; ..= Data unavailable.

Source = Complied from information given in Péricles Gasparini Alves, Access to Outer Space Technologies: Implications for International Security, UNIDIR, United Nations Publication, 1992; and others.

3. Access to Outer Space Capabilities: Challenges Ahead

      The preceding discussion has described the significant differences between Established and Emerging Space-Competent States, in terms of the scope of their outer-space activities and technology programmes. While EmSC States have mastered or are about to master activities such as sounding-rocket launches or launches to low orbits, only India appears to have attained the capability to boost rockets to geostationary orbit or indeed deep space.

      A second observation is that, as a rule, EmSC States are still developing small satellites (smallsats) weighing a few hundred kilograms with rather limited applications and life-spans. Again, India is an exception in that it has designed and developed larger multiple-application spacecraft. Israel has also significantly developed its military satellites.

      A third feature of EmSC States is that they have set up ground-control centres to receive, process, and disseminate national and foreign satellite data, with India again having the most ambitious programme of all. So far no EmSC State is involved in a major co-operation programme with an EtSC State of the magnitude of the Alpha International Space Station, India did send an astronaut into space with the Soyuz T-11 in 1984. It has also developed and produced solid and liquid propellants for both sounding rockets and space launchers.

      There is little doubt that the competence acquired by the EmSC States includes the basic technology for the military use of space boosters and development of missiles, particularly ballistic vehicles. However, the magnitude of EmSC States' BM programmes and the extent to which technology has moved from the civil to the military sector is less clearly identifiable than for EtSC States. Furthermore, most of the civil satellites that are capable of producing militarily-relevant data are owned by the major EtSC States. Thus, there is a clear gap between EtSC States and the new manufacturers in respect of both daylight sensors and infra-red devices and radars, and the acquisition of manufacturing capability for military-type space-based sensors by EmSC States constitutes a significant shortcoming.

      Nevertheless, in a broader sense, EmSC States appear to aim to have a footing in the international market for the sale of qualified outer space products, technologies and services. For the time being however, most of these States are only recipients of such commodities, their production capability being still unproven. As for the EtSC States, they too are also continuing to develop civil and military equipment and space applications. Given this evolving situation, it is worth noting that the possession and transfer of dual-use outer-space technologies pose at least three major challenges to the international community:

A. Civil and Military Uses of Outer Space Technologies

      Although it can be argued that technology itself is neutral, the use that is made of it can be detrimental to peace and security. For every one of the three areas of space exploration (launching, satellite, and tracking), there are dedicated military assets and civil systems that can be and are used for military purposes. Therefore, there is an urgent need to identify all the implications that access to outer space technology by both established and emerging space-competent States might have for international security. Since there is some technical distinction between the different launch vehicles, there is also a difference in their civil or military missions. This is less so in the case of satellites and Earth-tracking devices. Moreover, it is not only equipment and material that can be used for dual purposes, it is also the data they that they provide and the services which must accompany their use.

      Hence there is a need to assess the role that outer space technology plays in the restructurization of armed forces worldwide. It is not enough to know how these technologies can enhance war fighting capabilities; it is essential to know how these technologies can improve preventive diplomacy, conflict prevention, and conflict resolution. It is also vital to consider how space technology can contribute to the design and implementation of a durable new world order.

B. Technology Transfers and Control Regimes

      Non-proliferation is a central concern in the international security debate and outer space technologies are some of the significant components of that debate. That there is a gap in space competence between the EtSC and the EmSC States stems, in part, from the history of space technology development, it also reflects the development divide between industrialized countries and developing countries. Why does the experience of EtSC States make them resist opening up routes for technology transfer? How and why does the dual use of outer space technologies affect the EtSC States' non-proliferation strategies? Is the link between the development of BMs and space launchers, satellites and detection technology the only issue governing EtSC States' technology transfer policies; or are other political or economic considerations involved?

      An understanding of the issues at stake will help the international community to:

  1. address the military, political, and other aspects of non-proliferation;
  2. draw up realistic and practical multilateral action on technology transfer to close the gap between EtSC and EmSC States; and
  3. develop a multilateral agreement to ensure the transfer of space technology without undermining regional or global peace and security.

C. Liberalization of Military-Grade Goods

      As has already been stated, the commercial, civilian use of military assets, technologies, and services is an important factor in non-proliferation discussion. The end of the Cold War has had a fundamental impact on international relations. Access to outer space technologies can boost co-operation and sustainable development, but to address this challenge military spin-off activities in space and related sectors will need to be identified. This is already being implemented in such areas as the use of decommissioned BMs as commercial sounding rockets and space launchers. Another potential initiative could be a search for new synergies between military and civil uses of outer space.

      Such a search could also stimulate innovation and competitiveness. However, the most revolutionary aspect appears to relate more to end-use products and their users rather than to new equipment, where the objective is to develop a new culture in the use of space technology, equipment, and services. Promising initiatives with high future potential include synergy with industrial, scientific and traditional defence-oriented applications. The major challenge is to strike a balance between the search for new initiatives whereby the space industry and other sectors would attempt to penetrate the social fabric with improved and original services, and the danger that uncontrolled access to military-grade goods could pose if used by outlawed groups and individuals (e.g., terrorist and guerrilla groups, organized crime, etc.).

Part II
Increasing Access to Dual-Use Outer Space Technologies: Military, Geo-Political and Other Implications

      Following the discussion on the development of dual-use technologies and capabilities, Part II is an analysis of the military and strategic implications of the spread of these technologies in regional but also in a wider context, particularly the different types and BMs basing-modes--such as range and payload. In view of the recent fundamentally and strategically important geo-political changes, the implications for military doctrines and the perception of deterrent postures by different States are also the subject of appraisal.

      In addition to effecting purely military and strategic issues, real or suspected development of BMs also have implications to political and diplomatic security debates. How, therefore, do developments in BM capability affect regional security? Because of the range of some of these missiles, it is also important to assess the extent to which global security could be affected. Moreover, what effect could the spread of BMs have on existing and future arms limitation and disarmament agreements in general, and the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in particular? Where nuclear-threshold countries which are emerging space-competent states are involved, the question has even greater importance.

      Attention is also paid to the fact that an increasing number of States are now able to manufacture satellites and the implications this might have for international security. By increasing both horizontal and vertical access to BM capability, fundamentally aspects of war-fighting and war-prevention doctrines are undergoing changes. For example, satellite telecommunication links and imagery data are revolutionizing tactical military operations by bringing the battlefield "closer" both for communication to individual soldiers and visually to general staffs. Of special importance is the role that widespread access to satellite imagery data may play in arms limitation and disarmament verification and/or monitoring mechanisms. To this may be added the increased diversity of resources on which any international agency could draw to launch satellites or to assist the implementation of related tasks, such as the building of both confidence and security in outer space activities. Here the much debated do these issues (such as satellite trajectography and space debris surveillance capability) merit special attention.

      Last but not least are the economic implications of outer-space technologies themselves, be they dual-use or not. Just like the traditional space-competent states, EmSC States also find the international market an appealing sales outlet for their products and expertise, not only because of the need to recover some of the investment made in R&D, but also in respect of the commercial returns of conversion from military to civil applications.

      There is no doubt that the spread of outer space technologies is a highly complex and challenging issue, involving various events with uncertain results which might conflict with international security and peace. Yet, the spread of outer space technologies carries its load of constructive developments which should be singled out from the web of political, military and economic problems. Therefore, the objective of the present section is to sort out these and mixed interests and identify their complementarity in that they have a direct or indirect relationship to the central theme of this paper: the transfer of dual-use outer-space technologies.

1. Military and Geo-Political Developments

      Motivation to acquire dual-use outer-space technology can be based on various factors. One is the development of space and industrial parks. Another is the degree of military-relevant systems considered necessary for strategic security. However, the predefined objectives and technical constraints inherent in the technologies themselves may be limiting factors in the development of dual-use outer-space technologies. Tho these factors is added the issue of costs. For example, the production of launching vehicles and/or space-based devices may take precedence over ground-based radars and other sensors since, in purely military terms, the latter would have little value for a State which does not possess ballistic missile or satellite capabilities. The contrary would apply, however, for States whose military doctrines dictate the development of early-warning systems. Moreover, possessing or being perceived to possess dual-use assets such as BMs carries a number of implications other than military, since geo-political consequences are also an essential element of the security equation.

      Geo-political implications are rarely predictable, since there are no predefined patterns between one situation and another, or between one region and another. In the past, most geo-political analyses considered both the rationale and the values of political-military situations inherited from the Cold War. Now, a reconceptualization of regional security calls for a new approach in deciding the order of priorities. Does past and present possession of BMs indicate that there is a need to produce them? There is no easy answer, especially when the only point of reference is potential confrontation. In such a case, the "old" order of States' relations would still be valid. A departure from this reasoning would be naïve since, in this context, the wish to respond to technology transfer needs would be inhibited by security requirements. Thus, while the need to find alternative ways of addressing the situation is clear, this cannot be done without fully understanding what type of order of State's relation would replace the past or present one.

A. The Increasing Access to Ballistic Missiles

      In the past, the acquisition of BMs had clear implications for both global and regional security. Globally, Soviet/American technological production in the late 1950s led to an arms race in BM delivery systems. Since then, BM capability has become an increasingly important factor in military thinking and force structure, and in strategic and theatre contingency planning for land, sea and air forces, so that BM warhead delivery has profoundly affected the evolution of national nuclear and conventional doctrines, in war-fighting and deterrence for both war-prevention and first-strike/retaliation potential.

      For example, two of the three legs of the superpowers' nuclear triads are serviced by BMs. Prior to the existence of BMs, nuclear deterrence posture was based on deep-penetration of aircraft to deliver a payload by an air-dropping means as happened during the Second World War and for most of the following decade. However, the appearance of BMs in the early 1960s fundamentally changed the conceptual approach to deterrence, by making the Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD) doctrine technologically and technically feasible. In addition, BMs greatly affected the perception of an attacker's window of vulnerability, particularly in light of a growing number of BMs, and their warheads capability in terms of number--e.g., Mutual Re-entry Vehicles (MRVs), but also in terms of the flexibility of BM deployment system involving a variety of fixed and mobile basing-modes on the ground and at sea.

      BMs also had an impact on targeting principles for nuclear weapons for example, the targeting of cities versus the targeting of military troops and compounds. Thus, BMs have made it possible to raise or lower the degree of deterrence in the light of military as well as political interests, particularly with regard to the concept and policy of launch on warning or launch on attack, issues which are still the subject of debate in areas such as the role of nuclear forces in the present American/Russian relationship or the implementation of major bilateral nuclear disarmament agreements.

      Regionally, BMs were deployed by both the United States and the former Soviet Union in the European theatre during the Cold War era. Short- and intermediate-range BMs were aimed at military deterrence and designed to operate in war contingencies where limited use of nuclear or conventionally charged missiles was conceivably possible. The concept of limited nuclear war entered military doctrine. Strategy planners also considered, in the event of a global or regional confrontation, the use of BMs and/or their technologies as dedicated or non-dedicated Anti-Satellite (ASAT) weapons. The dividing line between dedicated and non-dedicated ASAT systems is very fine. In this context, it is important to remind that ASAT weapons are not only space-based devices, but also Earth-based launching vehicles or airborne direct ascending missiles for area-rendez-vous hit-to-kill weapons (e.g., Fractional Bombardment Systems).

      Over time, the military capability and geo-political conflict scenarios involving BMs evolved qualitatively and quantitatively. In respect to military capabilities, BM yield per warhead became evermore powerful and target-locking systems evermore accurate. In the case of conflict planning, new countries have joined the BM contingency scenario and their military doctrines not only accommodated BMs but also placed nuclear weapons and delivery systems at the centre of new nuclear-deterrence stands. The introduction of French and British nuclear capabilities based on both airborne and BM delivery systems naturally had an effect on the military doctrines of their "potential" enemies. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the now-defunct Warsaw Pact Organization (WPO) were forced to include the possible use of BMs in their war planning. Moreover, in addition to China's nuclear explosion in 1964, the actual deployment of BMs in the region, whether nuclear or conventionally charged, also affected the perception of military confrontation in Asia, complicating the regional political/military balance, especially following the break in Chinese/Soviet relations in the early 1960s.

      Concomitantly, the possession and deployment of BMs had an impact on arms control and disarmament agreements, in that BM deployment was used as a bargaining chip in single and dual-track arms limitation and/or disarmament proposals, the most obvious example being the talks on Persian missile deployments in the 1980s not only between the United States and the former Soviet Union. Possession of BMs by both superpowers also affected military doctrines of members of the two European alliances. Similar consequences of BM possession were also recorded in Asia and the Middle East, with the uncertainty of how far would declaratory or undeclared nuclear umbrellas cover countries in these regions.

      BMs have therefore played an important role in the power struggle between the two superpowers, and between the different countries inside--and even outside--the framework of their respective alliances. However, for some countries, the possession of BMs and their deployment in conflict areas provided the opportunity to use them as a tool of war. As shown in Table II.1.1, the number of BMs used in conflicts is growing and the total number of missiles reported to have been used is quite impressive. The Iran/Iraq war in the 1980s and the 1990-91 Iraq offensive against the United States-led coalition showed the important psychological role of BMs and the significant human and material destruction that they can cause. This has also been demonstrated in the civil war in Afghanistan and in the Yemen in 1994, when South Yemen fired BMs against populated areas in North Yemen. What was unthinkable yesterday, because of the perception of the implications of BM use, has now become common practice. Charged with conventional warheads, IRBMs are no longer thought of primarily as a war-prevention tool, or to end a conflict, but rather as a regular weapon much like other instruments of war such as tanks and aircraft.

Table II.1.1: Reported Ballistic Missile Uses
Conflict Period Missile Type Reported
* Yom Kippur War 1973 Scud   Egypt Israel
    FROG-7   Egypt Israel
    FROG-7   Syria Israel
* Iran/Iraq War 1980-88 Scud - Over 600
in all
Iraq Iran
    Al Hussein    
    Scud Iran Iraq
* US/Libya Clash 1986 Scud 2 Libya - Lampedusa (Italy)
* Afghanistan 1988-91 Scud over 2,000 Afghan Army Afghan Mujaheddin
* Iraq-U.S.-Led
1991 Scud about 100
in all
Iraq Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain
Al Hussein
* Yemen Civil War 1994 Scud   South Yemen North Yemen

      ¶= Some missiles have been said to have fallen in Pakistan; ..= Data unavailable.

Source = Adapted by the author partly in the light of information given in Ballistic Missile Proliferation: An Emerging Threat, 1992, Arlington: System Planning Corporation, 1992, p. 32; and others.

      In addition to that is the growing use of Cruise Missile (CM), as shown in Table II.1.2--although CMs differ considerably from BMs in technological, trajectory, and doctrinal terms. The U.S. has used submirine- and surface ship-launched CMs both in a conflict situation and during peace time. In the first case, it was argued that the use of CMs was based on the fact that this weapon system provides the opportunity to strike deep inside Iraq, without further exposing allied air forces, destroy weapons' depots, and damage other strategic targets and locations before ground troops would move further inside the theatre of operations. Moreover, CMs were also used to aid air power in striking areas in Bagdad, where allied forces where not expected to be deployed. Although there were civilians injured and killed during the bombing campaign, CMs were used as weapon of war in a military conflict situation. A similar rationale was also used to explain the 8 weeks of NATO bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999, where CMs were launched against strategic and tactical targets.


Photo II.1.1: Tomahawk Cruise Missile (USA)
a. Missile launch phase


b. Missile cruise phase

Courtesy of DoD

      Table II.1.2: Examples of Cruise Missile Uses

Situation Period Missile Type Reported Numbers Firing Country Target Country
Egypt/Israel confrontation 1967 Soviet-built Styx 1 Egypt Israeli (destroyer Elath)
U.S.-led coalition force against Iraq 1991 Tomahawk 288 U.S. Iraq
1993 Tomahawk 45 U.S. Iraq
1993 Tomahawk 23 U.S. Iraq
1995 Tomahawk 13 U.S. Bosnia
1996 Tomahawk 31 U.S. Iraq
1998 Tomahawk 300 U.S Iraq
Reply to alleged terrorist activities 1998 Tomahawk 50 U.S. Afghanistan
1998 Tomahawk 24 U.S. Sudden
NATO Air campaign 1999 Tomahawk - U.S. Yugoslavia

Source: "United States Tomahawk Cruise Missile Program", Department of the Navy, Department of Defence, http:/www.peocu.Js.mil.pao/tomafacts.html, 8/3/99, and others. There are no official figures available at the open literature of the actual number of CMs used in Afghanistan and Sudden. No official figures seem to have been given on the 1999 NATO air campain in Yugoslavia.

      In the second case, however, CMs were used against targets in Afghanistan and Sudden, countries which were alleged to be linked to the 1998 bombings on the American Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. In these particular cases, CMs were used to strike non-traditional military targets, as a new tool of American foreign policy to fight against terrorist acts.

      This evolution has far-reaching implications for military doctrines and, no doubt, for the transfer of dual-use outer-space technologies. For the moment, only conventionally charged BMs have been used in wars and other military conflicts. But strategic analysts often ask if nuclear, chemical, or biological (or toxic) charged missiles could be used just as their conventionally-charged missile counterparts. Yet another area of concern is whether nuclear-charged BMs should be considered in nuclear doctrines as weapon systems to be used both as a deterrent and as a means of retaliation, as it is the case with CMs. 218  Here one may question the stability of deterrence in the post-Cold War period and what will be the fundamental role of BMs in non-European political and military contingencies. Is deterrence by BMs, whether nuclear, chemical, biological or conventional, perceived in the same manner by not only their traditional possessors, but also between other possessor States and a host of other countries which now seek to acquire these weapon system?

      Much analytical work is needed to better understand how the deterrent threat is perceived by and between a new and larger group of countries with different backgrounds and regional concerns. In this analysis, the extent to which deterrence would follow the well-known behavioural patterns of the East/West relationship during the Cold War may be questioned. It is important to know if deterrence can be employed as a geo-political, and not a priori military, option outside the European context. If not, is there still time to halt the trend for BMs to play a military role, as distinct to ensuring a robust deterrent policy? This has particular importance since BMs and CMs now appear to be an attractive tactical option for cities and other populated areas as well as the battlefield. At the turn of the Century, the United States is reported to have planned to have approximately 3000 of what is often referred to, since the June 1993 strike against the Iraqi intelligence headquarters, the weapon of choice. The United Kingdom also possesses American-developed submarine-launched CMs, 219  while it is known the Russian Federation also develops this weapons system, it is believed that other countries such as France and Italy have the technological know-how to develop and industrialize CMs. How many more countries will develop this technology and how will this system affect the evolution of tactical and theatre military doctrines? It is difficult to answer this question with precision, but it is worth noting that some armed forces, notably the United States Air Force, are already considering to develop a Cruise Missile Defence (CMD) capability.

      Accordingly, military and geo-political thinking in the West has been affected in two major ways. One, the spread of BMs has provoked a fresh look at the new BM-possessor countries. Second, it has also encouraged a re-assessment of BM defence programmes. In most instances, the first situation conditions and stimulates the second, but in all instances BM defence is considered to be an adequate response, in terms of tactical operations, to the spread of such missiles.

1. Assessment of the Implications of BM Capability by EmSC States

      BM production or acquisition by several countries in the past decade has raised much concern. Map II.1.1 summarizes different rocketry capability worldwide. Rocket technology can be used for different purposes. It is appropriate here to identify the role it may be expected to play in the military strategies of these new possessor countries and its regional and global implications. Different appraisals of this situation have been made by various government organizations, academic and specialized research institutions in the recent past. 220  However, the present assessment ventures to build upon earlier studies to produce a comprehensive, updated analysis of BM acquisition in the light of confirmed new and prospective possessors. In doing so, this assessment particularly considers the implications of access to BM capability by EmSC States under the following three main themes:

  • Military issues:
    • The establishment of comprehensive and transparent military doctrines;
    • The planing and execution of military preparedness; and
    • The development of military-related nuclear, chemical, and biological programmes.
  • Economic issues:
    • The export of BMs, their technologies and services;
    • The export of other major weapon systems; and
    • Spin-offs of space-launch capabilities.
  • Political issues:
    • The potentiality of State-to-State conflicts;
    • The nature of political/miliary alliances and obligations; and
    • The stability of governments.

      Map II.1.1: Worldwide Rocket Launch Capability [Non disponible]

      The first general observation of note is that, as shown in Map II.1.1, not all EmSC States possess both space launchers and BMs nor, for that matter, do all EtSC States. In many instances, rocketry technology development is to a large extent caused by regional rivalries and conflicts, although in others they may only represent a desire to reach an expected lucrative international market in missile sales. In actual fact, some possessor countries continue to develop new versions of their BMs for both their national arsenals and the export market.

      The second observation is that, in the different EmSC States, BM origin usually falls into one of three categories namely, (1) missiles imported from the former Soviet Union, China, and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea; (2) missiles that have been imported but modified in sito by foreign or national missile experts; sometimes space launcher technology experts may have been employed to improve the technical sophistication and range of missiles, while in other cases, BM programmes have progressed with the assistance of BM technicians and equipment from other States; (3) missiles that have been indigenously produced-- and here the assumption that dual-use outer space technologies and specialist has been used to develop BMs is often true, the spread of acquisition by EmSC States in South Asia being a case in point since BM R&D in North Asia often stems from attempts to copy a foreign BM. 221 

      The third general observation concerns other uses of rocketry. As discussed above, this technology has been attributed different functions by different traditional possessors as shown in Diagram 1.B--for example, by deploying the vehicles as BMs proper or by undertaking significant R&D on some other potential delivery systems, notably ASAT weapons. However, the development pattern of BMs as well as the functions attributed to BM technology by EmSC States appear to differ from those employed by traditional possessors. Unlike some of the EtSCs, it is not expected that EmSC States will develop BMs in every conceivable basing-mode. Nevertheless, it may be noted that BM defence systems are being considered by at least one EmSC State.

      The fourth general observation is that the manufacture of BMs is being coupled with the manufacture of mass destruction payloads. Several countries now have access to sensitive technologies that could be used for both military and dual-purpose objectives, including the construction of weapons of mass destruction, the most threatening being weapon-grade nuclear material. However, chemical and biological weapons are also areas of concern. In this connection, the entry-into-force of the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), which calls for States parties to declare their CW stockpiles, may reveal that more States possess chemical weapons than the USA and the former Soviet Union. 222 

      For the above reasons alone, BM development by any State, not simply EmSC States, is no longer limited to potential political and military regional implications, but it has much wider significance. Traditional BM possessors do not limit their reasoning to the possibility that country A may use such weapons against country B in a regional conflict; they often also envisage the possibility that their own forces and indeed territories may be involved in the eventuality of a confrontation, such as when several States were so involved in the 1990-91 Gulf conflict and that BMs were used by Iraq. It is often argued that, unless the spread of BMs is halted, a similar situation might happen elsewhere: this widens the scope of the discussion below.

a. Asia

      Asia is a vast area of land and water mass and its political and military geo-strategic situation is as complex as its cultural and ethnic diversity. However, it may be said that, as far as impact on international security is concerned, there are two sub-regions of importance. One is South Asia where very active rocketry programmes have been undertaken by such EmSC States as India and Pakistan. Here relations between the two countries is a vital aspect of their BM programmes. Added to the fact that Indo-Chinese relations also play a role in the national defence planning of India, Pakistan, and China.

      North and South Asia is also a sub-region of considerable concern, particularly the Korean Peninsula, since any repercussions from here could well extend into the Sea of Japan and even further. However, the security of both South and North Asia is not limited to the relationships of these countries alone. BM development should therefore be seen in terms of a much larger security inter-relationship in Asia as a whole, which includes Russian space rocketry and BMs possession, manufacturing and sales markets. Whether related to outer-space programmes or not, rocketry technology transfer is another critical issue of concern, with the increasing number of BMs in Asia and the evolution of political events and military doctrines being additional pieces of the region's security puzzle.

(i). The South Asia Sub-Region

(a). India and Pakistan

      Relations between these two countries have been tense ever since Partition of the sub-continent in 1947, as four wars have shown. 223  Their points of contention are mainly focussed on the following three major areas of concern: (1) the Kashmir Valley -- most of which is under Indian control, (2) the separatist movement in the Indian Punjab (India claims that Pakistan supports Sikh militants) and (3) the religious friction between Muslims, Hindus, and Sikhs, Pakistan is also accused of supporting Muslim activists. In Mid-1999, a number of border classes with several casualties on both sides were reported. Although diplomacy has done much to reduce the tension in different occasions, there is no simple and immediate solution to any of these problems. Should their present BM activity continue at the same pace, India and Pakistan will each have the ability to strike deep inside each other's territory--although, at the time of writing, Indian missiles would clearly surpass capabilities in Pakistan (see Map II.1.2).

      With its Prithvi missile, which has a range of 250 km and can carry a 1,000 kg payload, India is developing a missile capability that could technically cover major tactical and strategic military objectives in Pakistan, not only because of the missile's range and its capacity to complement army artillery and deep strikes by the Indian Air Force, but also because of the closeness of potential Pakistani targets. All the more so, if it is recalled that the Prithvi missile is intended to be deployed in Army unit along the border with Pakistan, 224  and that its mobile basing-mode is an important tactical asset, because it allows for quick deployment and camouflage techniques, thus somewhat counter-balancing its short range.

      Indeed, major cities such as Karachi or Lahore would be well within Prithvi's range if launched from the Indian-Pakistani border area. 225  If launched from the north of India they could reach as far as the Islamabad region. Moreover, the military value of delivery vehicles is often evaluated in a larger perspective by taking into consideration their target-hitting accuracy, also known as Circle Probable Error (CPE). For instance, the well-known Russian Scud B missile has a CPE of 450 m, while the Prithvi's CPE is considerably more accurate at 250 m. 226  Deployment of the Agni missile, 227  whose range carrying the same payload as the Prithvi is 2500 km, would greatly boost India's deterrent capability and military strength in the event of conflict.

      For Pakistan, however, the range of its delivery vehicles now in service or about to be deployed are not the same as Indian missiles. Its Haft-1 missiles are reportedly limited to 60 km with a 500-kg payload. Apart from a few Chinese-supplied M-11 BMs, only the Haft-2 would be able to strike deeper inside India. However, the Haft-3, which is still under development, should be able to penetrate deeper into India, since it has an estimated range of 800 km with a 500-kg payload, making it capable of reaching highly populated cities such as New Delhi and Bombay which are about 350 and 400 km from the Pakistani border, respectively. The Haft-3 missile could even reach Hyderabad which is about 700 km from the border. On its other border, most of Afghanistan (which, like Pakistan, lacks strategic depth) could be covered by Haft-2 and all of it by Haft-3. The range of the Ghori missile (reportedly 1500km), flight tested on 6 April 1998 will almost double Pakistan's strategic option. Apart from the large cities which could be within the range of these BMs, it is also possible that there may well be several different military targets as well. This demonstrates the complementary nature of India and Pakistan's production of reconnaissance satellites and aircraft development and BM development, a point which is discussed in further detail below.

      With the above production capability in mind, any further analysis of the spread of BMs must include the other regional implications involved. As illustrated in Map II.1.2, none of the BMs mentioned above could reach the USA or continental Europe. The Agni missile could, however, reach Turkey and, therefore, NATO territory. NATO enlargement brings the territory of the alliance even closer. Hatf-2 could cover large parts of Iran, while the use of the Hatf-3 and the Ghori missiles would extend this coverage considerably further into southern parts of the Middle East, the Red Sea area, and Europe. In addition, ships of any country cruising in most of the Indian Ocean and part of the Pacific Ocean would also come within the operational range of some of these missiles, especially the Agni, Haft-3, and the Ghori. Used further north, any of these missiles could reach large parts of Russia and China.

(b) India and China

      Indo-Chinese relations and border disputes are factors of particular significance in Indo-Pakistani political/military history. 228  For example, there was the Indo-Chinese War of 1962 when China challenged the border arrangement between Tibet and India that was originally recognized in 1913-1914--the so-called MacMahon Line. There is also the controversial Chinese claim for sovereignty over the East China Sea and the Spratly and Paracel Islands in the South China Sea, which is disputed by other States in the region. A political solution to these differences can not be said to be in sight.

      In structuring regional security strategy, military planners in the above-mentioned countries do not exclude the deployment of BMs in and alongside their respective borders. While Prithvi missiles may be expected to strengthen Indian military might if deployed in strategic areas of the Indian-Chinese border, it is in this theatre that military analysts see the rationale for the development of the Agni missile. Technically speaking, the Agni would enable India to penetrate deep into Chinese territory with more reliability and less human risk than with the Prithvi or by aircraft means. In any case, in the event of a conflict air strikes would pose several technical problems for India, owing to the long distance to reach strategic targets. As illustrated in Map II.1.2, short of eventual Chinese vulnerability through military targets at sea, only the Agni could cover targets in major Chinese cities. However, India is expected to test SLBMs in the late 1990s. This would give the carrier's mobility could greatly increase her ability to reach areas within and outside Asia.

      In contrast, the distance from the border of some major Indian cities and military assets would be almost negligible, since New Delhi is only about 200 km from the Chinese border while other cities such as Hyderabad and Calcutta also fall within Chinese BM range. In actual fact all of the operational Chinese ICBMs (CSS-2, CSS-3, CSS-4, and the Chinese submarine-launched CSS-N3) cover a range well beyond the capability required for deterrence within the sub-region.


Map II.1.2: Ballistic Missile Ranges in South, North and Pacific Asia

(ii). The North Asia/Pacific Sub-Region

      BM production in this sub-region adds to the complexity of the situation in Asia, especially since R&D does not necessarily derive directly from outer space programmes. One example of BM development in the area concerns Taiwan and China. Their differences stem from their separation and China's claim that Taiwan is part of the mainland. Representatives of both countries have held top level meetings from time to time since 1994, but little optimism of reaching a solution to their differences is expected soon.

      While China has had BMs since the early 1970s, Taiwan is believed to have developed its own missile--called the Green Bee (Ching Feng)--and made it operational in 1983. 229  Reportedly, Green Bee's range is between 30 and 250 km. 230  This missile could be militarily significant to cover the area between Taiwan mainland China. Another vehicle reportedly being developed by Taiwan is the Sky Horse (Tien Ma), with a range of about 950 km and a 500-kg payload. 231  This would put a number of major cities and military assets on the mainland within the operational range of Taiwanese BMs.

      Other examples in this sub-region are the two Koreas: the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the Republic of Korea (RoK). Although there have been many periods of friction between the two countries since the 1950s, tension was again heightened in the early 1990s vis-à-vis the international community after the DPRK's refusal to allow international inspection of suspected nuclear facilities. This was exacerbated in March 1993 when the DPRK announced its intention to withdraw from the NPT. In this connection, the DPRK's missile programme, and reports of the ever-extending ranges of its ballistic delivery vehicles 232  give another dimension to the proliferation issue. The DPRK reportedly possesses a production facility which manufactures Scud-type missiles in the vicinity of Pyongyang. 233  The DPRK is also thought to have modified the range of the Scud B from 300 to 600 km (the so-called Scud C), which would make it possible for the DPRK to cover almost all of the Korean Peninsula, including Korea Bay, part of the Pacific Ocean facing Japan, and different parts of Chinese territory (see Map II.1.2).

      Even though the Korean Peninsula as a whole lacks strategic depth, there are reports that the DPRK has an improved version of the Scud B missile called No Dong-1, which underwent test fire in the Sea of Japan with an alleged range of about 1,000 km. 234  An advanced version of this missile, the No Dong-2 with an unconfirmed range between 1,500 and 2,000 km, is also said to be under development, 235  but unconfirmed reports speculate that the DPRK has a much more advanced BM, the Taepo Dong-2. This is thought to be a solid, liquid-fuel rocket with a range of at least 3,500 km. 236  It is, of course, a sensitive issue for Japan that the DPRK's BM capability covers not only the Sea of Japan but also the mainland. 237 However, it is also a delicate security issue for other countries in the region which might feel it necessary to prepare adequate means of deterring the DPRK or reacting to it in the event of hostilities.

      On the other side of the 38th parallel, the RoK receives US military support in deploying troops, heavy-equipment such as artillery, tanks and several batteries of BMD Patriot missiles. However, the RoK is believed to have developed its own BMs, designated NHK, which appear to have two versions with ranges of 180 and 250 km. 238  Both of these missiles cover important areas in the DPRK and a third missile reportedly under development--the NHK-A--is suspected to have a longer range. 239  However, some sources in the open literature refer to the RoK's KSR-1 (KSR-420), which is expected to have a range of 250 km carrying a 200-kg payload, but in fact its range may be substantially greater. 240 

(iii). Lingering Regional Concerns

      The changing strategic depth in regional and more global terms due to present and foreseeable production of BM capabilities are issues of major concern. However, they cannot be seen in isolation and the evolution of several other military and political factors also merit attention here. First, in strictly military terms, the development of BMs, coupled with air strike capability, provides a second leg for delivery systems on which military doctrines can be developed. It may therefore be asked whether future events will also (1) lead to the development of longer-range BMs of the ICBM type (i.e., 5,000 km or more) and (2) sustain the development of a third leg of delivery systems (sea-launched BMs). In the first case, priority is more on security concerns than on over-the-horizon capability, and although there are rumours that some degree of technical expertise has already been acquired by EmSC States, costly investment in this area is unlikely in the near future. In the second case, some countries would appreciate the mobility and increased degree of deterrence sea-launched BMs can provide. However, the confirmation of such developments would place a serious additional burden on the already complex military balance of the region and further complicate future military contingencies--especially since China already possesses SLBM capability.

      Moreover, in the case of the deployment of the Indian Prithvi BM, Indian's military doctrine is expected to be "drastically altered" as far as potential conflicts with Pakistan and China are concerned. 241  While this missile would be employed as a complement to deep strike engagements--support to artillery forces being a major scenario, one possibility is that the missile is attributed "...substantial roles dedicated to the Air Force", 242  In addition, India's DRDO has initiated work, within the framework of the IGMDP, on a BM defence system equivalent to the US Patriot missile. 243  There is, for instance, the Akash missile, whose production was reported to begin in the late 1990s. The missile is believed to be usable against both aircraft and short-range BMs, including Pakistan's Haft-1 missile. 244 

      Indian, Pakistani, and Chinese military base locations and their means of protection are apparently being re-evaluated. Primary concerns are probably the survivability of a traditional air strike and new delivery vehicles and the increase in readiness techniques and capabilities (e.g., procurement of BMs and aircraft early-warning systems) to reduce changing windows of vulnerability while increasing retaliatory capability. In this respect, it should be noted that China has conducted a military exercise in Tibet and the Karakoram region, in which missile delivery systems with nuclear weapons have reportedly taken part. 245  There is no doubt that access to military-grade satellite data constitutes an important additional military-support tool in the rethinking of the different scenarios involving a military conflict in the region.

      In addition to the psychological effect and hit-to-kill power of conventionally-loaded missiles, some of the BMs being developed by India, Pakistan (and possibly the DPRK) may well be capable of carrying mass destruction payloads, a fact which has even more significance when it is recalled that these countries have access to military-grade nuclear material. Some Chinese missiles are nuclear-charged. India has an important nuclear programme and conducted its first nuclear test nearly 25 years ago (1974). 246  In May 1998, India became a declared nuclear power. Pakistan, which was for long thought not to have the same capability, proved in May 1998 that it not only had a programme of fissile material and had already extracted some amount of Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU), but that it too had the capability of testing a nuclear bomb. 247 

      The nuclear threshold in North Asia is similarly delicate. The DPRK is seriously considered to be a nuclear threshold country and most analysts of its nuclear capability believe that the country could probably acquire nuclear weapons before the end of the century. 248  Accordingly, RoK legislators have begun to debate a possible amendment to the "Declaration of Denuclearization" made in 1991, to enable the RoK to use reprocessing technology for peaceful purposes (although the danger to divert this technology to weaponry still exists. Taiwan is also developing a nuclear programme for peaceful purposes, but some reports allege that , in actual fact, Taiwan is seeking to develop nuclear weapons.

      This nuclear puzzle becomes even more intricate when one considers the fact that India, Pakistan, and the RoK are not parties to the NPT agreement, nor have they signed any full-scale safeguard agreements with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Moreover, the announcement of DPRK's withdrawal from the NPT showed the fragility of the Treaty's non-proliferation regime since if a country can escape monitoring after withdrawing from the Treaty. This possibility could raise concern of a proliferation nature among the international community, particularly among neighbour countries which could, in turn, lead to other withdrawals as a political reaction, thus further complicating the regional geopolitical situation. Such a state of affairs would fuel uncertainty about peace and security in Asia, and it has also cast a shadow on the hope that agreement could be reached among countries in the region [in respect of the indefinite renewal of the NPT in April 1995. 249 

      Yet another matter of preoccupation in this sub-region is the of missile and/or technology sales in the international export market by both traditional and new suppliers. While BMs have been sold for some years--e.g., Soviet transfers of Scuds and the reported Chinese transfer of M-11 and related equipment (including their launchers and/or training vehicles) 250 --the regional suppliers' group is growing, as shown by Indian proposals to sell missiles. Over and above plans for the export of small missiles such as the Akash, 251  the question remains open as to whether the Prithvi itself or its technology is also going to be placed on the international market. This could be seen as an exploitable avenue to reduce production costs, [as for example, sales to countries in regions for which the missile's range would not reach the Indian territory.

      Apart from short-range missiles, it may also be asked whether the longer-range Agni missiles are also going to be exported. Here, the DPRK's BM transactions are also important in that, apart from the DPRK's Scud transfers, No Dong missiles are known to have been offered for sale on the international market. Confirmation of such reports would considerably boost the firing range of BMs available on the market and widen their acquisition sources. It could also further affect regional security and political stability. Thus, would a conflict in the next century be limited to the military parameters of four decades earlier? Would BMs be used in such a confrontation? How would nuclear deterrence be perceived by countries in the region? Would the function of BMs be seen in the traditional sense as they were known to characterize the East/West relationship: that is to say as a deterrent tool? Is it conceivable that a different type of deterrence relationship might develop in Asia? There has been no precise statement on the fundamentals of deterrence and nuclear military doctrine, such as targeting, levels of sufficiency, etc., by any of the countries discussed above in the recent literature.

      Furthermore, to what extent would extra-regional powers participate in a regional conflict, thus evoking a domino effect? Access to or possession of BMs and nuclear-grade material may have undesirable repercussions for security and peace in the Asia-Pacific region as a whole. The development of such expertise by certain countries could lead, say, Japan to acquire its own ballistic means of delivery, given Japan's access to rocketry technology. Moreover, Japan's access to nuclear fissionable material (both uranium and plutonium) and the possibility that it could technically develop nuclear-charged missiles are additional concerns. If such conjectures came to pass, a spiral of proliferation could be fuelled.

      Lastly, the instability of certain governments in the region has shown that the problems associated with the possession of BMs are not only limited to their use in State-to-State conflict. As demonstrated in Afghanistan, BMs can also be used in civil wars. Apart from Afghanistan (where, it is said, about 500 Scuds out of the 2,500 sold by Moscow have not been used) other countries in the region also provide fertile ground for the use of BMs in civil conflicts.

b. Middle East

      The Middle East is also a region where space launcher capability intertwines with the development of BMs, basically because of the drive for security which can itself be said to be based on three concerns. One is the Israeli-Arabic/Persian struggle and the inability to find peaceful ways of living together during the past 50 years. Secondly, there is the risk of confrontation between Arabic/Persian countries themselves, either because of border definition problems or because of a wish for greater influence in the Arab world. Examples are the eight year Iraqi-Iranian war, Libya's 1980 intervention in Chad, and the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990. Other potential conflict situations involve, among others, Egypt and Libya, Saudi Arabia and Iran, Iraq, or Yemen, and Syria and Iran or Iraq. Yet other concerns are the ethnic disputes within States such as Yemen's civil war and the guerilla warfare in Iraq and Iran.

(i). Israeli and Arabian/Persian BM Ranges

      Since its creation as an independent State in 1948, Israel has been involved in four major conflicts - in 1967, 1973, 1977, and 1982, respectively - with neighbouring countries such as Jordan, Syria, and Egypt, as well as several border clashes and other disputes involving the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and different militias in the southern Lebanon. The Israeli-Egyptian relationship was normalized after the 1978 Camp David Accords. Subsequently, quantum jumps towards peace in the Middle East were made after the 1992 Madrid Conference. For example, the 1994 Washington Accords included limited and progressive Palestinian autonomy, the Accord officially ended the state of war between Israel and Jordan, and the 1994 September statements made by both Israel and Syria were important initiatives towards a future settlement of the Golan Heights problem.

      However, despite the need to continue and broaden the peace talks, regional BM-range capability in the Middle East is impressive (see Maps II.1.3 and 1.4). Like Lebanon and several other small Gulf States, Israel lacks strategic depth. However, the American-made Lance BM permits Israel to deploy a tactical missile for up to 130 km beyond from its borders. Moreover, the Israeli Jericho I and II missiles both provide coverage of all the major capitals and military-relevant targets within a distance of 1,450 km. This ranges from the Libyan-Tunisian border in the west to Iran to the east.

      BM programmes in other countries in the region do not seem to be directly linked with launcher programmes, although Iraq's BM development may be an exception. Given that the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 687 has led to the destruction of all Scud, Al Hussein, Al Abbas, and Al Aabed BMs, Iraq is presently limited to missiles with a range under150 km. 252  Thus, it has lost considerable military might and lethality, since only the FROG-7 and the Ababil-100 missiles could be legally retained. 253  Before the Resolution came into force, Iraqi BMs could reach most of Egypt (including Cairo), Turkey (including Istanbul), Iran (including Teheran),Syria, Saudi Arabia (including Riyadh), and all of Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and the Arabian-Persian Gulf. 254  FROG-7 missiles for deployment were for tactical use (70 km) along the border regions of Saudi Arabia, Iran, Syria, Jordan, and Kuwait. Israel and other countries in the region are in principle no longer attainable. It should be noted, however, that even the deployment of such missiles is probably impossible because of the two exclusion zones declared and monitored by the allied forces in the north and south of Iraq.

      Before the Iraqi invasion in August 1990, Kuwait was said to possess FROG-7 missiles, but it is doubtful whether any remained after the war. The number of BMs possessed by Iran is uncertain. In the road-mobile solid-propelled Iran-130 and the solid/liquid-propelled 8610 rockets, Iran has missiles with a shorter range (130 km maximum) than the Scuds it possesses, but which are reportedly indigenously-built and, to some extent more easily available than Scuds. Another Iranian BM is the Mushak rocket, which consists of three series of solid-propelled missiles: the Mushak-120, Mushak-160, Mushak-200--the last reportedly still under development. 255  However, these missiles have a rather short range and would fail to reach any strategic targets of a potential enemy. Only an unconfirmed number of liquid-propelled Scuds B and C could reach Baghdad or other strategically significant locations in the Arabian/Persian Gulf. 256 

      Development of a longer range BM known in the West as the Tondar-68 missile would greatly increase Iranian missile capability, since its estimated range of 1,000 km with a 500-kg payload would cover most of the Middle East.


Map II.1.3: Ballistic Missile Ranges in the Middle East: Israeli Capabilities

Courtesy of Geospace


Map II.1.4: Ballistic Missile Ranges in the Middle East: Arab/Persian Capabilities

Courtesy of Geospace

      Further to the north is Syria. It possesses FROG-7, SS-21, and Scuds B and C missiles. In addition, the Chinese M-9 BM has reportedly been ordered. 257  In pure military terms and given Israel's lack of strategic depth, all of these missiles could cover most of the highly populated cities and militarily significant areas of Israel. 258  Longer range BMs such as the Scud C and M-9 missiles (500 to 650 km) would also cover large areas of Iran, Turkey, Greece, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia - and, consequently, most of their respective capitals - as well as the Mediterranean, the Red Sea, and the Arabian/Persian Gulf.

      Egypt lies in the western region of the Middle East. Therefore, it would probably only be able to deploy its FROG-7, Sakr-80, and Scud B missiles for tactical purposes. However, reported improvements to the Scud B could extend its range to about 450 km and thus provide greater strategic capability. Nevertheless, only development of the Vector, 259  with a range of about 1,200 km, could give Egypt real stretch into the Middle East and beyond. Some sources refer to another missile under development as the Badr Project. 260  This is expected to be a 850-1,000 km liquid-propelled BM with a 500-kg payload. From Egypt, both of these missiles could cover all of the region's major capitals, reach all of such NATO countries as Greece and Turkey and most of Italy, as well as a considerable area of the Mediterranean and the Red Sea.

      To the west of Egypt lies Libya, whose SS-21 (120 km) and Scud B (280 km) BMs have very limited operational coverage. While neither would reach Cairo or Tunis, the Scud C and M-9 would. Similarly, Libya's own Al Fatah--a liquid-propelled BM with a 500-kg payload and a 950-km range--is expected to cover areas including Algiers, Dijamena and Khartoum. 261  It is also estimated that missiles of this type could also reach, Athens, Rome and Tirana as well as southern Israel.

      Yemen and Saudi Arabia are in the southern part of the Middle East. Both possess BMs, but neither country is known to produce them. Yemen plunged into a civil war in the mid to late 1990s to once again separate the North from the South. It appears that most, if not all, of its stockpiles of SS-21and Scud BMs have been retained in the South. Given Yemen's geographical location, only North Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and Oman are likely to be within the range of its Scuds. In contrast, Saudi Arabia reportedly possesses Chinese-made SS-2s and is, along with Israel, the only country in the Middle East to possess operational intermediate-range BMs. These afford extensive coverage--between 2,400 and 2,700 km--bringing all of the Middle East, a large portion of western Africa, the Mediterranean Sea, and the Indian Ocean under their range.

(ii). Enduring Security Problems

      Whenever peace is achieved between Israel and is neighbour, security in the Middle East will likely continue to be an ongoing issue of concern, because military arsenals and strategies will also continue to evolve. For instance, the exact role of BMs in the region cannot be foreseen nor is it known how long Iraq will be denied BM capability beyond 150 km. However, what does seem certain is that restraint will be increasingly appreciated due to the potential military threat of BMs to States within and in the periphery of the region, as well as to the role of BMs in a changing regional balance of power. Particularly, in view of the continuing access to ever longer-range BMs in the absence of self or multilateral restraints. Hence, there is also a need to discuss access to BMs, their ranges and implications to regional security in a much wider context than regional conflicts only.

      Although one may think at occasions that peace in the region is just around the corner, the dividend of peace is less discernable than it might, at first glance, seem. For instance, the return of the Golan Heights to Syria would probably cause Israel to acquire efficient early-warning systems. If the Golans are returned, this would enable Syria to deploy missiles, including Scuds, in the Heights--unless, of course, it is decided to demilitarize the zone or limit missile deployment in some other way. 262  In the past, Israel has relied on its formidable air power for defence, but missile capability may now become an increasing important deterrent, in that missiles could undertake the Air Force's traditional role in certain specific situations. If so, it will then be important to assess the impact of BM spread on regional military policies. As in Asia, conventionally or chemically charged BMs may not be intended solely for deterrent use and their firepower function could be increased. This may not be the case, as a rule, for the doctrinal function of nuclear-charged missiles, which could be perceived as weapons acquisition specifically aimed for a deterrent posture role. No doubt, such evolution would prove to be detrimental to the perception of strategic parity and therefore to the flow of arms into the regional.

      Early-warning capability is important, since it is often said that such warning could be provided by Awacs-type aircraft for over-the-mountain reconnaissance. However, Israel is not alone in needing early-warning systems, because although the firing of Israeli Shavit space launchers are carried out under major technical constraints, 263  they could be mistaken by Israel's neighbours as a BM attack. Nevertheless, it is very unlikely that a Shavit launch would be mistaken for an attack in peacetime, because of the considerable advance preparation required. Moreover, various governments and even the general public can be informed in advance, thus removing any element of "surprise". At the same time, misinterpretation would be plausible in a crisis situation if Israel wished to launch a reconnaissance or other military-grade data satellite without prior notification. Just one single event could be detrimental to security and peace, triggering a rapid response in the form of "retaliation" with BMs or even, given the proximity of the "enemy countries", other military means.

      At present, BMs can possibly be used in the Middle East accidentally, for example, in the case of malfunctioning early-warning mechanisms. Yet, strategy experts also do not exclude the use of BMs should a conflict occur. Although Israel and Saudi Arabia were both attacked by Iraqi BMs on several occasions during the 1991 Gulf War, not a single Jericho or an SS-2 missile was used in retaliation. However, it is unlikely that these countries would pursue such a "no-action" policy in the future. It would be too presumptions to describe a scenario for a future war in the Middle East, but it does not appear naïve to state that the different roles BMs may play could further complicate the understanding of the regional balance of power. How would Arab countries react if Israel launched BMs? Would they react collectively? Quite apart from the accuracy of Scuds, SS-21s, and other indigenously-built missiles, the sheer number or these missiles could create a profound negative psychological effect on politicians and the populations alike thus raising the risks of increasing the level of a potential conflict.

      The use of BMs by at least three countries in the region has clearly affected Israel's perception of vulnerability and the roles BMs may be expected to play for some of its potential enemies, which led Israel to a move in the direction of BMD. Immediately after the 1991 Gulf war, PATRIOT missile batteries were deployed by the U.S. in strategic areas of Israel. However, PATRIOTs are not designed to counter Scud-like missiles and their performance showed that a more advanced system is required for efficient defence, hence the principal doctrinal role for the ground-based ARROW endo-atmospheric missile interceptor now being developed by Israel in co-operation with the United States. 264  At the same time, the acquisition of credible BMD capability may also have other perturbing effect. For example, it could influence Israel's perception of rather or not there is a need to pursue a first-strike doctrine.

      Another matter of continuing concern is the production of mass destruction-capable payloads by different countries in the region, as has been confirmed in the case of chemical weapons. While most of Iraq's destroyed chemical weapons had been deployed in traditional artillery systems, 265  they were also found in Al Hussein BM warheads. 266  Although there is considerable suspicion about other States in the Middle East such as Egypt, Libya, and Israel, the extent of their CW investment is unknown, nor is there any information available as to whether their BMs have CW payloads. Nuclear-charged BMs are somewhat different. Although UNSCOM has destroyed Iraq's nuclear programme, it is thought that similar programmes may be under development elsewhere in the region, e.g., in Iran and Libya: both countries are often reported in the specialized literature to be seeking such capability. Another country in the region suspected to be seeking nuclear capability is Israel.

      The BM international export market is another matter of preoccupation in the Middle East, not only as regards the flow of weapons into the region, but also out of it. Although most of the BMs in the Middle East originally came from extra-regional nations, indigenous BM production is now being very actively pursued. Hence, there is a potential for horizontal increase in weapon arsenals. There is also the possibility that some of the countries with long-range BM capability may subsequently become suppliers. Several unconfirmed reports suggest that Israel may have already exported its Jericho technology on at least one occasion (South Africa). Similarly, Egypt could become a Vector or Badr supplier.

c. Latin America

      Argentina and Brazil are both reported to had BMs development programmes. It was argued in Argentina that missile capability would strengthen the country's defence if ever there were military confrontation with Chile over border disputes, that it would also have enhanced its political and military prestige, and that it could avoid the repetition of a situation such as the Falkland Islands defeat. Similar arguments were also advanced when BM R&D were initiated by Brazilian companies in the 1980s - for example, BM capability would have strengthened the country's influence in Latin America. BM production was also argued on the grounds that the pursuit of such option was necessary to maintain a certain level of technological parity in military developments vis-à-vis each other. It was also maintained in both countries that missiles and missile technology had been sold by various countries for many years and they could provide commercial spinoffs in the international export market due to, among other reasons, cheaper production costs in Latin America as compared with missiles sold by traditional suppliers.

      However, in the mid-1980s, production problems in both Argentina and Brazil had a negative impact both politically and militarily. Once there was no justification for their deployment, interest in BM development for geo-political purposes waned. Indeed, in the absence of any concrete regional threat, missile production was considered to be a destabilizing factor, which the geographical locations of BM-possessor countries and the South American continent did little to counteract. Therefore, BM acquisition by Argentina or Brazil was not thought to be indispensable for sub-regional or continent-wide defence, especially when the role of BMs is compared with that of other conventional weapons.

      Politically, the rapprochement between Argentina and Brazil in the mid-1980s, particularly in the nuclear field, legally constrained their development of nuclear-charged missiles. Priority was placed on economic exchange and development, notably sub-regionally with the Southern Common Market (MECOSUR). Argentina and Chile also entered a new era where military might and gun-boat diplomacy have much less importance in their relations: the possession of BMs could have adversely changed the direction of their relationship.

      Another obstacle to BM production was finance. Without a clear security rationale in favour of ballistic missiles, there was considerable doubt about the real size of purchase orders for the national markets. This discouraged BM producers from investing in R&D, and private companies did not have sufficient funds for full production of the different BM. BM producers had therefore to reach out to the international market outside of the region and engage in joint venture projects for the development of missile qualification stages, this prior to the full-development of missiles. Joint ventures and other forms of cooperation were thought to be essential to offset the costs of R&D and production; a task which was not easy and delayed development programmes.

      While such arrangements have been beneficial in some instances, they have caused constraints in others. For example, the UN weapon embargoes on Libya and Iraq, which were key countries for co-operation in this domain for Argentina and Brazil respectively, restrained BM development in cooperation programmes, especially the participation of technicians. In another instance, technology transfer constraints on the part of EtSC States (notably, the USA) hindered the already difficult development of BM technology in Argentina and Brazil.

      Therefore, regional issues plus economic and political circumstances have prevented the production of BMs from being developed and deployed in Latin America. However, because Argentina and Brazil still retain technical BM development capability, certain areas of concern remain, the most relevant being a potential brain drain. Experts from certain countries in Latin American working in the field of space launchers, BMs, and nuclear technologies can still legally work on the development of BMs and weapons of mass destruction outside the region. However, this is not a specifically Latin America problem, as will be discussed below.

d. Other Regions

      Reports of BM development and deployment in regions other than those mentioned above concern South African and Central and Eastern Europe. The case of South Africa is unique, since the country appears to have dismantled its BM programme which reportedly developed the Arniston missile--reportedly from Jericho I technology. There is little speculation in the specialized literature on the military and geo-political impact of these missile developments and implications of brain drain with respect to experts from that.

      In Central and Eastern Europe, however, the situation is quite different from the Southern African one. Several countries in a relatively small area of Central and Eastern Europe had purchased Soviet-made BMs--for example, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, which reportedly have FROG-7, SS-21, SS-23, and Scud B missiles. Hungary, Poland, and Rumania are believed to retain FROG-7s and Scud Bs, while the former Yugoslavia has FROG-7 missiles. Byelarus possesses SS-21s and Scud B BMs, Kazakistan possesses FROG-7s and SS-21s, and Ukraine FROG-7s, SS-21s, and Scud Bs. 267  In addition to these short-range missiles, and even though there was a vivid debate after the dissolution of the Soviet Union on who actually retained practical control over former Soviet ICBMs, the Ukraine had reportedly inherited over 170 SS-19s (130) and SS-24s (46), Byelarus 80 SS-25s, and Kazakistan 104 SS-18s.

      Map II.1.5 illustrates BM ranges in Central and Eastern Europe: all of the countries in this region are within BM reach. During the Cold War, the threat of BM use was contained between the two European alliances, but the danger has now shifted to other potential State-to-State conflicts, as well as civil ethic, religious, or other conflicts. There have been unconfirmed reports that FROG-7 BMs were used in Yugoslavia in 1992, which makes it possible to speculate that even more powerful BMs could be employed in the future. The removal of SS-18 from Kazakistan prevents the potential use of such nuclear missiles. The removal of SS-25 ICBMs from Byelarus and SS-19 warheads from the Ukraine as well.

      Moreover, the Ukraine still retains a measure of industrial structure and human resources for long-range rocket production. No doubt, the export of missile and space launcher products, resources, and technologies could constitute an important source of income, but it could also threaten international security and peace by spreading BM-related technology, particularly if it is coupled with the transfer of weapon-grade nuclear material.


Map II.1.5: BM Ranges in Central and Eastern Europe

2. Military Reaction to Increased BM Capability: EtSC States

      The geo-political situation of the 1990s has encouraged many nations to reassess their perception of present and possible future threats to both their own national security and the security of the world at large. This stimulates a number of EtSC States to make fundamental changes of focus. One of which is a growing desire to curb the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their components, including dual-use outer-space technologies. For many EtSCs, this has become the security issue of the decade. Their quest has been pursued by different means. At least three initiatives merit attention here.

      One is a foreign policy which strengthens the legislation curbing access to weapons of mass destruction. This appeared to be the goal behind the move in the mid-1990s to support an indefinite extension of the NPT Treaty and conclude a CTBT [Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty] document without delay. A second initiative was to extend restrictions on technology transfers, particularly dual-use equipment and methods of manufacturing weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles. A third initiative was the effort to develop the technology base to counter BM attacks. These initiatives, which are all complementary, were pursued simultaneously. The first and second basically call for national/international political and diplomatic action and are discussed in Parts 3 and 4 of this paper. The present section will therefore concentrate on military reaction to increased access to BM capability.

      States perceive the BM threat in different ways and with different intensity--namely, that it actually exists or that it could be a possibility. Thus, they accord different priority to the development of BM defence capability. Some, for example, place more emphasis on the development of ground-based defence for continental interception. Others with over-the-horizon power projection and capability also choose to add sea-mounted and/or air-launched BM defence systems to their arsenals. Despite of these differences, similarities both in the reasons to develop BM defence and their very R&D programmes can be identified and almost all of the States concerned have advanced the following arguments to justify their strategy.

      First, that it may in the future provide adequate protection against BM attack for troops, civilians, and cities. Second, that it may deter potential proliferators of BMs. Third, it could raise the requirements for the development of BMs and their attack strategy by potential enemies, thus lifting the veil from clandestine BM programmes. In addition, most EtSC States are focusing more attention on the interception of BMs and the detection/destruction of mobile BM launchers. These and other reasons have stimulated more than 12 countries in different cooperative ventures to develop BM defence capabilities that, provided that the technology works to acceptable levels of interception, could be deployed in different phases during the next 10 years.

a. United States of America

      While BM defence is also being studied or developed in the Middle East, Europe, and the Asia/Pacific region, it is in the USA that it is most active and where, in fact, international cooperation often originates. This is because of the USA's determination and effort to develop an anti-missile defence system for more than 15 years. During that period, one of the cornerstones of its comprehensive non-proliferation policy was the concept and development of a defence against ICBM attacks under the Strategic Defence Initiative (SDI) Programme. However, a changing international security environment and inadequate technical capability have necessitated a revision of R&D. Originally, the aim of the SDI programme, which began during the Cold War, was to provide protection against, inter alia, a Soviet nuclear attack using more than 1000 warheads. A subsequent initiative--the Global Protection Against Limited Strikes (GPALS)--was a more modest programme capable of countering around 200 warheads. This was followed by an even more curtailed defence architecture known as the Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) programme, which, in its national territory defence mode, is aimed at countering 4 to 20 warheads depending on different scenarios: e.g., 4 warheads from an indigenous type of missile or 20 from two ICBMs of the SS-18 class due to limited deliberate, accidental, or unauthorized launches. 268 

      American R&D on BMD was again reshaped after the 1990-91 Gulf conflict between Iraq and the US-led coalition forces, in the light of experience with Scud missiles (which caused a heavy toll on American forces in Saudi Arabia) and Scud attacks in Israel, Bahrain, and Qatar. Scud interception provided by the American PATRIOT system received mixed performance reviews. 269  In 1993, the DoD undertook a 'Department Bottom-Up Review (BUR)" which reshaped, inter alia, the National Missile Defense (NMD) component of the BMD programme. 270  The study concluded that the USA was not under immediate threat of a BM attack, but that such a threat could emerge as and when '...Third World countries develop or acquire simple or perhaps even sophisticated ballistic missiles.' 271  NMD has therefore been re-aligned to a limited deliberate or accidental launch with vehicles built by the former Soviet Union or with less sophisticated indigenous vehicles launched by non-European counties. While indigenous development of BMs that could threaten the US is not expected to reach full maturity before a reliable BMD system is deployed (about 8-10 years from now), there is concern that there could be technology or hardware transfer during that period.

      Therefore, because of the decreasing likelihood of an ICBM being used against the USA, coupled with the increasing likelihood of BM use in regional conflicts, American BMD policy is now focusing on Theater Ballistic Missile Defense (TBMD) R&D. In addition, today's conception of theatre missile defence has broadened. It is defined by the DoD as including attacks from '...ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and air-to-surface guided missiles whose target is within a theater or which is capable of attacking targets in a theater', hence the increasing use of the acronym TMD [Theater Missile Defense]. 272  Continuation of BMD R&D and the expansion of anti-missile missions are expected to have several technical and other implications for war-fighting doctrines and for the transfer of dual-use outer-space technologies.

(i). National Missile Defense

      National Missile Defence (NMD) is based on five different base modes: Early Warning System (EWS), Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI), Ground-Based Radar (GBR), Space-Based Infrared System-Low (SBIRS-Low), (formerly Space and Missile Tracking System (SMTS)), and Battle Management/Command, Control, Communications (BM/C3). EW Systems employ both ground- and space-based devices and some, being part of the American nuclear triad EWS capability, are already available; others are being upgraded or will be developed. GBI systems are reported to have been designed for NMD and to have a Hit-To-Kill (HTK) exo-atmospheric vehicle which can destroy incoming missiles in mid-flight. A specific HTK vehicle is undergoing a series of flight tests and it could take a few years before it is considered operational for battle.

      R&D is also in progress on another key technology, the Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS), which will improve the performance of existing Defense Support Program (DSP) systems providing mid-course tracking and discrimination data. SBIRS (High and Low components) is a constellation of spacecraft in different orbits which provides global coverage at all times (see Figure II.1.1), and it is expected to play a role in both NMD and TMD architectures. SBIRS-Low (SMTS also formerly known as Brilliant Eyes)--a constellation of low earth-orbiting satellites that is expected to provide mid-course tracking for re-entry vehicles--is also still being researched, flight tests were foreseen to take place between 1997-99.

      Figure II.1.1: SBIRS Architecture--Space segment (USA) [non disponible]

      NMD deployment is still undecided, for a number of political, technical, and legal reasons. One is that R&D on NMD capability is still in the initial stages and the technology required for all the elements to function in the architecture has not yet been tested. The restrictions laid down in the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty are another reason. An initial NMD would therefore have to consist of a single BMD site, although other options are also planned. 273  Nevertheless, the DoD has estimated that "a first deployment opportunity' could have occurred from the mid-1990s onward, with the ground-based systems being deployed in less than four years and the full system--space segment included--in about seven years. However, no deployment has been decided by end 1999. The time required for the deployment of an NMD is expected to be shorter if a decision is made later: it is estimated that deployment of the full system would take no more than five years if a decision is made in 2003. In 1995, the DoD announced a shift of focus to allow deployment within three years of a decision and, in 1998, it was believed that a decision could occur much earlier, by 2000. 274 

(ii). Theatre Missile Defence

      However, the deployment of an NMD has lower priority than TMD [Theatre Missile Defence]. 275  This reflects the perception that BMs are less of a threat to the continental United States than the threat against US forces in forward deployment mode. Various upgrades and development programmes are underway to improve BMD by the different branches of the Armed Forces both individually and together in their Joint Theater Missile Defense Architecture. 276  This reflects the need to adapt BMD to the specificity of the different services and to conform with the guidance given in the Doctrine for Joint Theater Missile Defense, which states that '[n]o single system or technology can counter the entire spectrum of the theater missile threat.' 277 

      The Air Force, for example, is responsible for developing missile detection and warning capability as well as BMD interceptors. In the first case--missile detection and warning capability, as with the NMD architecture, a number of operational detection sensors are being upgraded and new ones are being studied or developed. Satellites and radars play a key role in these passive defence systems, 278  since they provide missile launch detection, sensor cueing, target identification, and locking--whether they are owned and operated by the Air Force, other military services, or inter-service units. This is the case of the Extended Airborne Global Launch Evaluator (EAGLE).It is designed to detect and track TBMs during their boost and mid-course phases. In 1999, EAGLE is noted as undergoing a series of demonstration and validation tests. Another major passive defence system under R&D by the Air Force is the SBIRS mentioned earlier, which should be operational (if a deployment decision is made) around the turn of the century.

      As regards active defence, 279  the Air Force is carrying out advanced study on an endo-atmospheric air-launched weapon (F-15 for the Air Force and F-14 for the Navy) to intercept theatre BMs in the boost-phase--the airborne Boost-Phase Interceptor (BPI). 280  Such an interceptor would be based on Kinetic Energy Kill (KEK), but directed energy sources have also been subject of a feasibility study. 281  Given the speed of the detection and kill operation necessary to intercept a BM in its boost-phase, the major platforms now being considered are not expected to use satellites in their system architecture, 282  but this may well change in future satellite data transmission systems, particularly those using laser beams. 283  It is expected that the system under study will intercept a missile within the atmosphere with a boosted High-Speed Antiradiation Missile, which should ultimately be able to intercept between 20 and 90 seconds after launch. 284  In addition, the US Air Force is also developing an Airborne Laser (ABL) Demonstrator, to detect, acquire, identify, track, and destroy BMs in the boost phase. Demonstrations of the ABL are said to be scheduled early in the next century.

      The US Army is developing a two-tiered defence: the Theater High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD). This is a mobile KEK interceptor which is said to be able to destroy targets such as the Scud or the CSS-2 missile and to have endo- and exo-atmospheric capabilities (probably at up to altitudes to about 150 km). 285  THAAD is designed as a transportable single-stage, solid-fuel interceptor of '... tactical missile threats directed against wide areas, dispersed assets, and strategic assets such as population centres and industrial facilities.' 286  THAAD's endo- and exo-atmospheric interception capability is based on a combination of ground-based (TMD-GBR), airborne (AWACS), and space-based (GPS) sensors. 287  The DoD is reported to have carried out a successful THAAD flight test on 21 April 1995 (see Photo II.1.2). Other successful THAAD tests have taken place allowing the programme to move forward. By August 1999, it was believed that a decision to move into a new engineering, manufacturing and development stage could come as earl as 2001. 288 

      The first THAAD battery was assembled on 6 June 1996 at Fort Bliss, Texas. It was attached to the 6th Air Defence Artillery to provide the Army with early military deployment capability, operational assessment, user influence on a final system design, and to explore and refine doctrinal, organizational and operational concepts. 289  The battery will conduct the User Operational Evaluation System (UOES) with four launchers, 40 missile interceptors, two radar units, two BMC3I systems, and support equipment. UOES was expected to meet the Congressional mandate for a deployable system before the year 2000. 290 


Photo II.1.2: Theater High Altitude Area Defence Battery (USA)
(a) Initial missile launch phase

      (b) Missile released from its canister [non disponible]

Courtesy of the U.S. Army

      A second BMD tier will be made up of PATRIOT Advanced Capability (PAC) levels 2 and 3 missile batteries. PATRIOT PAC-2 has benefited from the 'near-term improvements' programme and has been upgraded with radar enhancements and the addition of an optical disk for radar operations. 291  The PATRIOT PAC-3 (see Photo II.1.3), expected to have been configured as of 1998, is designed to intercept both BM and cruise missiles. PATRIOT PAC-3 will use Extended Range Intercept Technology (ERINT) missiles (see Photo II.1.4). 292 

      Another Army missile is the Medium Extended Air Defence System (MEADS), formerly the Corps Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM), which is an advanced concept to provide area air and missile defence capability for highly mobile land forces. 293  It has been designed to counter tactical BM and air breathing threats (including cruise missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles) charged with conventional and unconventional warheads. The US Army is also developing the Joint Tactical Ground Station (JTAGS), which is said to be the US Space Command Tactical Event System element in the theaters of operations.

      Photo II.1.3: PATRIOT PAC-3 Missile (USA) [non disponible]

Courtesy of DoD

      However, the other Armed Services are also considering KEK interceptors and, in the case of the Navy, its lower-tier, endo-atmospheric intercept capability is expected to be an Area Theater Ballistic Missile Defence (TBMD), 294  which will be a modified version of the AEGIS weapon system deployed in cruiser and destroyer ship-mounted functions. In addition, the STANDARD Missile-2 is also to be modified to a configuration called Block IVA TBMD. An important task of the STANDARD Missile-2 is that it is:

      being designed to retain capability against antiship cruise missiles while providing significant capability to defeat the majority of the world's tactical ballistic missiles. Future efforts will focus on improving the guidance of the Block IVA to effect increased lethality against emerging threats including chemical submunitions and other weapons of mass destruction. 295 

      Photo II.1.4: ERINT Missile Interception Test (USA)

      (a) Missile launch [non disponible]

      b) Missile homing in on a storm target vehicle approximately 14 seconds after liftoff [non disponible]


(c) Fireball resulting from high velocity impact

      (d) Destruction of a storm target and its submunition payload by kinetic energy kill (hit-to-kill) interception [non disponible]

Courtesy of DoD

The Extended Range Interceptor (ERINT) missile was successfully tested against a storm target ballistic re-entry vehicle on 30 November 1993 at the White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico.


Figure II.1.2: Theater Missile Defence Architecture (USA)

      The Navy will also construct an exo-atmospheric combat system (building on the AEGIS) to form an upper-tier defence in what it calls Navy Theatre-Wide Defence (NTWD). 296  This exo-atmospheric interceptor is an advanced concept and was still under study in mid-to-late 1990s.

      The US Marine Corps is also developing active and passive TMD capabilities but, in contrast to the other Armed Services, the Marine Corps will probably focus its attention on a system which can counteract short-range BM attack. Accordingly, the TPS-59 Radar and HAWK weapon systems will be upgraded for this task. In an interception test in 1994 the HAWK TMD countered and destroyed two Lance missiles. 297 

      Other major BMD R&D capabilities include the location and detection of decoys, and the destruction of mobile BM launchers by fighter aircraft, preferably within 10 minutes of a missile launch. 298  Such capabilities are expected to have both a kill capability and a deterrent effect. As in airborne boost-phase interceptor (BPI), detection sensors would not, primarily, come from satellites but from aircraft--possibly the U2, Joint STARS and the Cobra Ball, which relay data to fighter aircraft. However, while the overall mission defence architecture remains unchanged in 1999, more performing defence against BMs for the ascending (boost-phase intercepts), terminal phases, and launcher intercept are being studied.

      However, as in the case of NMD, all these refinements could create legal problems for existing international agreements. For example, the development and deployment of the THAAD has been curtailed in order to avoid any allegation that the ABM Treaty is being violated. 299  The major issues include explicit differentiation between strategic BMD and tactical systems; mobile basing-modes and fixed ground-based ones; and space-based radar sensors, as well as their interrelationship and implications to treaty limits. Moreover, would these constraints continue, and to what extent, if the Treaty were to be renegotiated? Renegotiation might lead to the removal of certain restrictions; alternatively, the Treaty might cease to exist either by unilateral withdrawal or by bilateral decisions to end restrictions.

      Although testing of new BMD architecture including the different Armed Services could possibly be made on a yearly basis, 300  the deployment of TMD is still uncertain. Apart from a possible lack of political will, the question of major funding could hinder, perhaps even halt, the R&D of BMD programmes. For instance, there is often fierce intra-Service competition when a congressional decision is being taken on the funding of major weapons programmes and BMD is no exception. 301  However, it is the actual authorization of funds that counts and it is the availability of cash that determines whether selective BMD R&D should continue or not. Those who favour BMD find it difficult to convince the US Administration that different programmes should be maintained, although they may succeed in some selected cases. 302 

      Alook at SDI, GPALS, and BMD fundings indicates that the Clinton Administration has reduced the 'President's Request' for funding from 1993 to 1996 (see Graph II.1.1). Conversely, in 1996, 'Authorization Passed' was considerably more than the President's request, the renewed Republican-dominated Congress having a more lenient view of BMD than the Democrats. This increase is more significant than it may seem, since none of the House and Senate Authorizations, House and Senate Appropriations, and Appropriations and Authorizations Passed for the 1996 Financial Year included funding for Brilliant Eyes. The pace of BMD R&D, and the actual future of BMD, are consequently closely linked to the USA's decision-making process.


Graph II.1.1: Historical Funding for SDI, GPALS, and BMD Programmes Fiscal Years 1985-1996

      As of Fiscal Year 1994, House and Senate Authorizations, House and Senate Appropriations, and Appropriations and Authorizations Passed did not include funding for Brilliant Eyes, which was transferred to the Air Force Budget.

Source: 'Historical Funding for (SDI) BMD: Fiscal Year 1985-96', Ballistic Missile Defense Organization, mj-40169/022696, Department of Defense, 1996.

      The United States is not alone on the path to develop BMD and co-operation with several other countries on the matter is aimed to offset the cost of different programmes. Moreover, besides the potential benefits of protecting against a BM attack, supporters of such co-operation also argue that cooperation (a) complements US counter-proliferation strategy, (b) helps to strengthen the allied relationship, (c) gives the opportunity for States to adapt different approaches to their own needs, and (d) provides a platform whereby cooperation towards R&D on BMD, and later deployment, finds larger political support since more countries than the USA would participate in the conception, production, and integrated deployment of equipment and doctrines.

b. Middle East

      Israel is the only EmSC with a BMD R&D programme. It is worth noting that Israel is also the only EmSC States that has been the target of Scuds and Al Hussein missiles. This has probably reinforced Israel's determination to push ahead BMD R&D. Israel joined the USA in researching the Raptor-Talon project--a lightweight unmanned aircraft capable of carrying up to six miniature air-to-air rockets, and, reportedly, of striking a missile more than 150 miles away. 303  However, it was Israel's participation in the American SDI programme, with the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in May 1986 and a MOA in June 1988, that intensified its BMD research. 304  In 1989, the the Strategic Defence Initiative Organization (SDIO) and Israel signed a cost-sharing contract to develop a low-cost hypervelocity gun. At that time, Israel was concentrating on propulsion, short-wave chemical lasers and theatre defence architecture and its investment had amounted to US 412.08 million by FY 1992. 305  Since then, Israel has joined at least half a dozen co-operative projects.

      One of these is the ARROW Continuation Experiment (ACES), which is a follow-up to the ARROW Experiments Project that developed the ARROW I KEK endo-atmospheric interceptor pre-prototype. 306  Israeli participation includes partial funding and fire control, and surveillance and other equipment. It has been reported that the first flight of the single-stage solid-propelled ARROW I missile from an Israeli test-range (in August 1990) was a failure.

      Photo II.1.5: ARROW ATBM Test Launch: 1994 (Israel) [non disponible]

Courtesy of Israeli Aircraft Industries International INC

      In December 1990, the ARROW I missile was successfully tested and is said to have intercepted a surrogate tactical ballistic missile in 1991. 307  There were other flight tests, notably on 6 December 1994 (Photo II.1.5). The ARROW I missile programme has served to acquire a vehicle interceptor technology and its results have permitted continuation of BMD R&D.

      The Arrow Continuation Experiment is therefore in its second phase where a two-stage solid-propelled ARROW II vehicle will be developed with an already existing ARROW II warhead. The first flight of the ARROW II vehicle on 30 July 1995 was successful and reached an altitude over 20 km. 308  There was another flight test on 2 February 1996 (see Photo II.1.6): three other tests were planned for 1996, including one where the ARROW would intercept a missile target.

      Photo II.1.6: ARROW ATBM Test Launch: 1996 (Israel) [non disponible]

Courtesy of the Israeli Aircraft Industries International INC

      ARROW technology is expected to be incorporated in an American two-tier TMD system. In addition, the US DoD has said it intends to use the Israeli boost-phase intercept study for American multi-service (BMDO, Air Force, Navy, and Army) R&D on an endo-atmospheric KEK vehicle to '...minimize schedule and costs...'. 309  The latest agreement between the USA and Israel is the ARROW Deployment Project, which pursues "...research and development of technologies associated withe the deployment of the Arrow Weapon System." 310  This and other joint deployment initiatives are largely geared towards the identification of areas of inter-operability between Israeli, American, and other forces.

      Unlike the USA, Israel has reportedly announced its intention to deploy a NMD system. However, Bahrain, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia, which have also been BM targets, have not announced their intention to enter into a special agreement with the US or any other countries as and when BMD systems become operational. Given the technical, financial, and time investment needed to develop BMD, it is therefore likely that Israel will continue to be the only country in the Middle East which may have anti-missile capability in the foreseeable future.

c. Western Europe and Canada

      In Europe, American/British BMD activity began in the mid-1980s when both the UK Ministry of Defence and British private firms undertook some R&D on SDI. The United Kingdom was formally invited to participate in the US programme and a MOU was signed in December 1985. 311  This included British research commitments on optical and electron computing, ion sources for particle beams, electromagnetic rail gun technology, advanced lethality technology, and theatre defence architecture. 312  By the 1992 fiscal year, British involvement in SDI-related work amounted to US$129.09 million. To mention one example, the Culham Laboratory provided the continuous ion source used in the neutral particle beam experiment--the Beam Experiment Aboard Rocket (BEAR)--which was tested in outer space in July 1989. The Dynamics Division of British Aerospace Defence is said to have participated in BMD and TMD studies on interceptor guidance, target acquisition, and lethality since 1986. 313 

      In 1995, the United Kingdom provided major input to the BMDO Space Test Research Vehicle (STRV)-1b, a micro satellite which investigated, among other things, the dynamics of the Van Allen Belts and their effect on satellite systems. 314  The British have developed a Medium Wavelength InfraRed system aimed at evaluating contamination and radiation damage to a space-based mid-course sensor focal plane array and microelectronics. The United Kingdom also participates in the bilateral Scientific Co-operation Research Exchange and studies within the NATO framework.

      Since the Gulf War, the possibility that the acquisition of BMs by certain nations could threaten the security of Western countries has given rise to much debate in the United Kingdom. The idea that British Armed Forces overseas as well as its territory might be at risk prompted the UK to undertake a two-year Pre-Feasibility Study (PFS) of a BMD network. 315  This identified the nations which were in a position to acquire BMs, the potential types of payload, and the extent to which KEK or other defence systems would be effective against BMs covering British requirements for both a national missile defence system and the protection of forward-deployed forces. 316  The study also assessed the financial implications that might arise from the development of BMD capability.

      France is another European country which has been developing BMD for many years. The French Ministry of Defence signed a five-year Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with SDIO in January 1990 for both an exchange of information and co-operative research. 317  Accordingly, French firms were authorized to undertake SDI research under contract in such areas as sensor technology, free electron lasers, klystrons rocket propulsion components and casings, Extended Air Defence (EAD) simulations, and defence architecture. 318  By FY 1992, French expenditure amounted to US$ 17.37 million on such studies. 319  In 1994, France decided to reshape its research on BMDs, 320  particularly in the light of some 30 countries in the Middle East and Asia acquiring access to BMs with ranges superior to 300 km and missiles with ranges equal to or more than 1000 km.

      It was therefore decided to support studies on air- and space-based anti-missile detection and air defence, 321  with particular reference to improved air defence with anti-missile capability based on EAD. France's long-term aim is to possess means of detecting and alerting BM attacks. 322  In April 1994 there were reports in the Press that France and the USA had formed a working group to examine possible bilateral cooperation in the area of BMD, including the sharing of early-warning data. 323  It was therefore not surprising that, on 20 February 1995, France signed a Statement of Intent (SOI) to cooperate in the multilateral development of MEADS, with a cost share amounting to 20% of the total project, which is due to enter into service in 2005. 324  Other BMD cooperation programmes include the bilateral Group on Plumes, Backgrounds, and Re-entry Signatures.

      In the case of Germany, the first co-operation in the area of BMD is said to date back to 1984 with the sighing of the Roland PATRIOT Agreement with the United States. This agreement aimed to improve the defence of American airfields in Germany and led to the development of the PATRIOT Missile Multimode Seeker. 325  But it was not until March 1986 that the United States and Germany signed two agreements related to BMD and outer space technology, one of which was a MOU regarding the participation of German firms and research institutes in the SDI programme. 326  German participation in SDI research includes advanced technology contracts and subcontracts related to pointing and tracking, free electron laser technology, theatre defence architecture, lightweight mirrors, membrane tool technology, and optics. During this time, SDIO had conceived the use of and flight tested the German-built Shuttle Pallet Satellite (SPAS) as a carrier for SDIO infra-red sensors to be part of the space-based Infrared Background Signature Survey (IBSS) device. Germany's involvement in SDI related research had amounted to US$ 88.55 million by FY 1992. 327 

      In 1994, the German White Paper contained statements on BMD showing further involvement on this area of research. Germany also signed the SOI on the development of MEADS with the same amount of cost share as the French: 20%. This new missile defence system shall replace the current HAWK used to date. In addition, Germany is also working with the United States '... to develop a fully operable capability between PATRIOT systems.' 328 

      Canadian involvement in BMD was carried out by private firms which had signed commercial agreements to participate in SDI research, the Canadian government itself having declined an American invitation to participate. 329  According to official American reports, Canadian research had been limited to the areas of power materials, particle accelerators, platforms, and theatre defence architecture. 330  By FY 1992, Canadian participation had reportedly amounted to US$ 8 million in SDI related work. 331  In FY 1994, Canadian participation also involved work on sounding rockets. 332  But it was only one year later that Canadian activities reportedly focused on interest in '...gaining a better understanding of missile defence though research in consultation with like-minded allies.' 333 

      Italian firms also took part in research related to SDI after Italy had signed a MOU in September 1986. 334  Like other European countries, research which was undertaken by Italian firms included theatre defence architecture, but also focused on cryogenic induction, millimetre-wave radar seeker, and smart electro-optical sensor techniques. By FY 1992, Italian participation had amounted to US$ 15.79 million in SDI related work. 335  In 1995, Italy also was one of the four countries which signed the SOI on the development of MEADS. Italy shall participate with a cost share of 10% of the total budget.

      In the years of the SDI programme, the Dutch undertook co-operative ventures in theatre defence architecture and electromagnetic launcher technology amounting to US$ 14.34 million dollars by FY 1992. 336  Later on, the Netherlands is said to have been interested in the PATRIOT PAC-3 and the Navy's STANDARD Missile-2 Block IVA system. 337  Belgian firms have also been involved in SDI research and, by FY 1992, Belgium had spent over half a million undertaking co-operative work in theatre defence architecture, laser algorithms, and some software technologies. 338  Denmark's participation involved US$ 0.03 million on optics by FY 1992. 339  In FY 1994, Danish research had been identified as covering magnetic optics for free electron laser beam steering. 340 

d. The NATO Alliance

      As an alliance, NATO cannot afford to disregard BMD R&D being undertaken by several members of its own military forces. Co-operation within the framework of NATO is a quantitative but also qualitatively jump in respect to BMD conception and R&D. By expanding to the multi-nation level what for years was mainly unilateral or bilateral R&D efforts, NATO has opened up a new dimension in the alliance's tactical and strategic thinking as regards defences against BMs and technology transfer. A number of meetings and studies have been undertaken at different political, military, and technical/industrial levels. As summarized in Table II.1.3, NATO has taken several steps with the view of considering the development of BMD. This new direction has been emphasized at summit meetings since 1991 by heads of States, thus triggering the necessary political will to reshape NATO's security concept. In 1994, an important classified report was prepared by the Defence Group on Proliferation on risk assessment of the threat of proliferation; other, more technical, classified reports were concluded in 1995 by the Extended Air Defence/Theatre Defence Ad Hoc Working Group (EAD/TD AHWG) and the NATO Industrial Advisory Group (IAG).

Table II.1.3: NATO Ballistic Missile Defence Initiatives
Entity Period Statement/Objective Recommendations
ANSC 7-8 Nov. 1991 Announcement of the Alliance "New Strategic Concept" A new basis for the Alliance to lay its security concern, particularly taking into consideration the proliferation of WMD
Rome DPC 8 Nov. 1991 Reiterate the importance of addressing the Alliance's security needs taking into account risks of global context, in particular the proliferation of WMD Reaffirm the need for consultation in view of co-ordinating efforts to properly respond to such risks
NAC Jun. 1992 NATO Air Defence Committee would investigate approaches to satisfy the requirement for TBMDs -
NAC Aug. 1993 Approval of the NADC conceptual framework for the provision of EAD -
CNAD Oct. 1993 Establishment of the AHWG on EAD/TMD -
SHAPE 1994 NATO military authorities initiated work on a formal military operational requirement for TMD -
Brussels' SHSs Jan. 1994 Formally acknowledging the security threat posed by the proliferation of WMD and associated delivery means To intensify and expand the Alliance's political and defence efforts against proliferation
NAC 1994 Establishment of the Senior Politico-Military Group on Proliferation To address political aspects of NATO's approach to the proliferation problem
NAC 1994 Establishment of the Senior Defence Group on Proliferation To address the military capabilities needed to discourage NBC proliferation, deter threats or use of NBC weapons, and to protect NATO populations, territory and forces
NAC 9 June 1994 Issuing of the Alliance Policy Framework on Proliferation of WMD which describes developments in the evolving security environment that give rise to the possibility of proliferation NATO's efforts must incorporate both political and military capabilities against ballistic and cruise missiles
SHAPE Oct. 1994 Completion of the TMD Draft Military Operational Requirement Protection of NATO forces , territory and population against BM by means of an evolutionary capabilities including multiple defensive tiers
DGP Dec. 1994 Assessment of the risk posed to the Alliance by the proliferation of WMD and their delivery means -
DPC Dec. 1994 Growing proliferation risk with regards to State in NATO's periphery and the continuing risk of illicit traffic of WMD and related material Alliance's counter such a risk and to protect its population, territory, and forces
DPC Dec. 1994 Growing proliferation risk with regards to State in NATO's periphery and the continuing risk of illicit traffic of WMD and related material Alliance's counter such a risk and to protect its population, territory, and forces
NADC 1995 TBM Counter-Measures Report -
NADC 1995 Presentation of the Air Defence Programme for 1995-2005 Alliance guidance for all bodies on aspects of extended air defence
AHWG Apr. 1995 Study identifying future opportunities and methods of co-operation Urged nations and Alliance bodies to proceed specific co-operative technical projects and to identify additional areas of co-operation
MDAHG   Establishment of the group with a view to identify EAD/TMD concepts and to develop technical configurations and associated costs for EAD/TM interceptors, sensors, battle management, and command, control, and communications -
DPC & NPG Nov. 1995 An appropriate mix of conventional response capabilities, including active defence would complement NATO's nuclear forces and reinforce overall deterrence posture against proliferation -
DGP 29 Nov. 1995 Proliferation must be taken into account in order to maintain NATO's ability to safeguard ther security of its member States and to carry out new missions. Of particular concern are growing proliferation of risks on NATO's periphery, the role of suppliers of WMD-related technology to them, the continuing risks of illicit transfer of WMD and related material, and political-military uncertainties and future technological trends related to WMD A mixture of capabilities is necessary for adequate deterrence and protection against the risk of proliferation core capabilities: EAD/TBM
DGP 1996 Identification of areas in NATO's military posture to include EAD To be reported at the 1996 NAC Summit

      AHWG= Ad Hoc Working Group; ANSC= Alliance New Strategic Concept; Brussels' SHSs= Brussels' Summit of Heads of State; CNAD= ; ; DGP= Senio Defence Group on Proliferation; EAD= Extended Air Defence; NAC= North Atlantic Council; MDAHG= Missile Defence Ad Hoc Group; ROME DPC= Rome Declaration on Peace and Co-operation; SGP= Senior Politico-Military Group on Proliferation; SHAPE= Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe; TMD= Theatre Missile Defence; WMD= Weapons of Mass Destruction;

Source: Adapted from information given in David Martin, "Towards an Alliance Framework for Extended Air Defence/Theatre Missile Defence," NATO Review, May 1996; "NATO's Response to Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction: Facts and Way Ahead," Press Release, (95)124, 29 November 1995; Gregory L. Schutle, "Responding to Proliferation: NATO's Role," NATO Review, N° 4, 4 July 1995;"The Alliance's New Strategic Concept," Agreed by the Heads of State and Government participating in the meeting of the North Atlantic Council in Rome, 7th-8th November 1991; "Rome Declaration on Peace and Co-operation," Issued by the Head of States and Government participating in the meeting of the North Atlantic Council in Rome, 7th-8th November 1991.

      The BM threat is taken into consideration in light of the growing number of States acquiring such delivery vehicles, but also in view of the Alliance's new strategic role and missions, where NATO forces could be deployed outside of the traditional borders of Member States 341 --in particular, as regards crisis management, peace and humanitarian operations. 342  In addition, any future enlargement of NATO which, for example would include the countries today in NATO's "Partnership for Peace", wwould also extend further east the territory to be defended by NATO forces, thus placing this territory further inside BM ranges of non-member States. Such threats been described in detail in the above-mentioned classified NATO Risk Assessment of the Proliferation Threat report. An open source of information may hint to its contents by indicating that:

      Approximately two dozen counties, including a number in the Middle East and the Mediterranean region, have ongoing programmes to develop or acquire nuclear, biological or chemical weapons, while in some cases, the capability already exists. Many countries, particularly in the Middle East, are also gaining the capability to build surface-to-surface missiles as a delivery system. By early next century, these capabilities are likely to have advanced significantly, particularly if abetted by the purchase of illicit transfer of weapons, delivery systems, and related technologies. 343 

      Under such perception of security threat, it is often said that measures against BMs should be studied further, 344  which explains the rationale for NATO "... to examine carefully the requirement for extended air defence/theatre missile defence (EAD/TMD)." 345  All NATO countries that have bilateral discussions with the United States or which are already undertaking joint projects on BMD are participating in discussions. For example, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States are part of the EAD/TD ad hoc working group. Although the results of the group's reports remain classified, it appears that the need to develop a BMD doctrine and capability within NATO, or as a contribution of individual national armed forces, does not find much resistance as it could have been the case in the days of SDI.

      Judging by the debate that takes place in NATO today, the question does not seem to be any longer whether or not NATO should acquire BMD capability, but how such capability could be integrated into NATO's forces. This leads to further questions, such as how standard theatre equipment should be conceived and in what ways could the military operational requirements drafted by the Supreme Headquarters of the Allied Powers in Europe's (SHAPE) be revised and implemented. 346  In the same vein, how to implement the "concept of operations" being prepared by SHAPE in conjunction with the NATO Air Defence Committee (NADC) and the Conference of National Armaments Directors (CNAD)? 347  From the American perspective, the long-term objective seems to be the integration of TMD '... into the air defence and airspace command/control systems ....', 348  which would ensure operational interoperability of the different military contingents. This objective is said to be in-line with the conclusions made by the EAD/TD AHWG in its 1995 report, which does not contradict an American proposal "... to share ballistic missile early warning information with NATO allies." 349 

      As in the case of NATO, the Assembly of the Western European Union has conducted several meetings on the issue of BMD in the 1990s. Its first recorded meeting took place in 1992 in the Technological and Aerospace Committee, which submitted a report from the Thirty-Eighth Ordinary Session on 'Anti-Ballistic Missile Defence'. 350  The report mainly assessed the threat of BMs to Europe and appraised defence measures against such threat, as well as summarized the position of different European countries towards (what was at the time) GPALS. The most important outcome of the meeting and which was recorded in the report was perhaps the document's 'draft recommendations' to pursue a more comprehensive assessment of BM threats and BMD initiatives. Among these requests was the expression of the need to provide a joint European position towards the American programme.

      Some of these recommendations were taken into consideration at a major symposium organized by the Assembly of the Western European Union in Rome on 20-21 April of the following year. 351  Guidelines drawn from the symposium were to a large extent similar to the recommendations of the 1992 report. However, a new recommendation also suggested that the Council of the Western European Union '[t]ake an initiative in the United Nations with the aim of establishing an international early warning and surveillance centre open to all counties interested in sharing data and information on missile activities and linked to an obligation to notify all missile firings and space launches.' 352  This recommendation has not been implemented so far. However, it does illustrate the extent to which BM detection was considered to be a concern. The downsizing of GPALS and the closer co-operation between the United States and the Russian Federation in the BMD area also influenced the Assembly's recommendation.

      By promoting this type of collective dialogue, the Assembly has contributed to a larger reflection in different bodies and defence ministries in Europe to clarify the perception of BM threat and the role BMD could play to sustain European security either in terms of alliances or by individual States. Given the pace of political/military developments and the different commercial and industrial challenges and opportunities involved with such assessment, European countries may reach a decision on the implementation of BMD before the end of the century and probably in co-operation with the United States.

e. The Russian Federation

      In contrast to other European and NATO member countries, the history of Russian involvement in BMD is much richer. This is primarily due to Soviet R&D on ABM systems. But it is the changes that occurred after the dismantlement of the Soviet Union that constitute the most drastic policy shift in BMD co-operation programmes, chiefly because the original BMD programme announced by the United States in the framework of SDI was directed at countering Soviet ICBMs. Yet, Russian involvement in BMD came in stages and continues to increase. Preliminary consultations between American and Russian representatives on possibilities for establishing GPALS started on 13 July 1992. 353  Both countries engaged in the exploration of the potential for Russian co-operation in the development of ballistic missile defence capabilities and technologies with other GPALS-participating States. One of the first initiative taken was a decision to establish three working groups to co-ordinate American/Russian relations in this field: the Global Protection System Concept Working Group (GPSCWG), the Technology Co-operation Working Group (TCWG), and the Non-Proliferation Working Group (NPWG). A directive for the creation of subgroups had also been given, wherein they would consider issues such as analysis, concepts, early warning, and co-operation which would involve the structure, modalities, and functions of a future GPALS.

      Among the most important and radical decisions taken at the time was that of considering the sharing of ballistic missile early warning information, possibly through the establishment of an early warning centre. However, this decision should not be surprising, since the Russian military had already envisaged miliary co-operation with the United States prior to the creation of the above-mentioned working groups in March 1992. 354  Reports had appeared in the press then that the Russians had proposed to the Americans to conduct a joint space tracking network test using radars and other devices, with the aim of exchanging their data on upper atmosphere/spacecraft decay and reentry characteristics. In 1994, other reports indicated that the sharing of space-based BM tracking data between the Russian Federation and the United States was being considered, where data collected by American DPS spacecraft on tactical and strategic missile firings would be relayed to Russia, while the United States would receive similar data from Russian early warning satellites. 355 

      This aspect of the American/Russian relationship grew and several technological co-operation projects involving research and experiments were initiated jointly by Russia and the United States 356 --notably the Active Geophysical Rocket Experiment (AGRE). It involves active and passive sensor technologies for the American NMD programme. In particular, AGRE provides vehicle launches for observation by the BMDO's Midcourse Space Experiment satellite, the data from which shall be analysed and delivered to the Air Force's space-based tracking sensor programme. 357 

      In addition, Russian technology has been under study to assess its contribution to BMDO's programme on directed energy and other demonstrations for airborne weapon applications. 358  For example, the Russian American Observation Satellites (RAMOS) programme collects infrared background phenomology and target signatures, which includes space-based infrared systems. 359  Still in the space sector, the Russian TOPAZ II satellite space nuclear reactors provide test data for the Advanced Interceptor Materials and Systems Technology programme. 360  Russian participation in both of these BMDO projects is part of research aimed at developing technologies for NMD and TMD architectures.

      In the area of active defence, besides the Galish-type of BMD, the Russian Federation also possesses the S-300V missile system, which is believed to be capable of anti-aircraft and anti-tactical BMD. So far there are no reports in the open literature that either of these missiles, their technologies, or other Russian active defence technologies are under discussion for bilateral or multilateral co-operation in the framework of the TMD programme.

f. Asia/Pacific

      Three countries have taken the lead in early co-operation with the United States in BMD: Japan, Australia, and the Republic of Korea. As in the case of the Canadian Government, Japan declined participation in SDI R&D. However, the United States and Japan signed an agreement which facilitated the participation of Japanese enterprises in this programme. 361  Japanese companies undertook a study on Western Pacific theatre defence architecture for SDI, as well as took part in research regarding computer software applications such as the engineering of the architecture of programming tools. 362  However, no Japanese firms reportedly took part in hardware research, although it was believed that such activity could also have been initiated if required but would have been limited to electronic devices such as integrated circuits and large-scale integrated circuits. By FY 1992, Japanese SDI-related work had amounted to six million dollars. 363 

      In the years following SDI and GPALS, Japan commenced a bilateral BMD study with the United States tailored to its regional threat perception needs. Japan is described as acquiring the basic infrastructure which could serve a TMD system: notably, by producing the updated PATRIOT PAC-2. 364  This is a missile with which Japan has considerable manufacturing experience since it has produced the PATRIOT PAC-1 since 1985. 365  Other reported weapons systems under acquisition by Japan are the AEGIS-class destroyer and AWACS aircraft.

      Rocket test undertaken by PDRK during the second semester of 1998 have caused much concern to neighbouring countries, particularly Japan, the Republic of Korea, and allies the United States. These test, whether or not they are intended to qualify space launcher or ballistic missile technologies, will probably further stimulate Japan to and the Republic of Korea to intensify their participation in BMD. The Republic of Korea involvement in BMD is not often made public, but American military presence in the country with PATRIOT missiles 366  indicates that any future BMD would also be deployed in strategic areas in the region so as to counter any BM attack that might come from the PDRK.

      Another country in the Pacific which might be interested in some degree of involvement in BMD is Australia. Although Australia is not reportedly undertaking any work with the United States in this area, scientific cooperation in this field has been identified as a possible subject for future efforts. 367 

B. The Evolving Military Importance of Satellite Systems

      Satellite technologies have played an important role in military activities in the past, and future technical developments in space-borne devices in this field are likely to increase their role. Of particular importance seems to be a qualitative, but also quantitative, increase in the capabilities of new generation spacecraft. This is notably the case with Level I and, to a lesser extent, Level II EtSC States, but also with respect to developments by EmSC Sates. Several new trends are unfolding (see Table II.1.4), but three merit special attention here. One such trend is that, as of the late 1980s, replacement of military-grade satellites have indicated the development of new spacecraft both in their technical equipment and functions. New applications of satellite technologies have in turn affected the perception of the nature of their military role: satellites have become increasingly combat oriented support equipment. This evolution was noticeable especially after the 1991 Gulf War. Satellites have since been perceived as one of the essential tools which will influence military strategies and combat operations in the future.

Table II.1.4: Evolving Trends in Military-Grade Satellites
Technological Aspects Data Accessibility
* Replacement of the present generation of satellites
* Qualitative increase in capabilities
* Provision of new battlefield-related roles
* Increase in mission functionality
* Greater interoperability between and among different satellite systems and architectures
* Creation of network systems operating various satellites simultaneously in a constatation mode
* Growth in the dedicated/non-dedicated military satellite population
* Increase in the number of possessor countries
* Increase in the number of service providers
* Increase in number of end-users
* Increase in the type of end-users
* Greater openness in the international commercial market

      While another of these trends is not actually new, it has an innovative approach: increasingly, one satellite is assigned several functions. What is innovative about it is that the concept of having both civil and military applications in the same satellite is no longer a taboo issue but common practice. In the past, increasing capabilities in one was often coupled with denial of the same capabilities to the other, although some civil satellites have traditionally been charged with certain military payloads or attributed additional military roles. Multifunction spacecraft seem to be the product of the new political and diplomatic environment, which is more conducive to such a mix of end-use applications, notably in the international commercial market. But it is also, and some would argue it is primarily, the result of a quest to diminish satellite production costs. Moreover, this approach also responds to a need to broaden the basis of financial income for satellite applications.

      A third trend is that military-grade technologies are becoming more easily attainable, available, and employable. This is more so true due to a qualitative increase in satellite capabilities with respect to imagery and other functions. For over three decades, almost no satellite imagery of military value was commercially available in the international market. From 1986 to 1992, the threshold of image resolution available to this market was stable at around 10 m. Since then, the international commercial market has seen the appearance of 2 m and subsequently 1 m resolution imagery. The question of when this "resolution revolution" is expected to end is an open one.

      These new changes are not occurring without affecting decade-old practices related to satellite manufacturing capabilities and access to their data. Nor are these changes unrelated to a desire to rethink policies covering technology transfer. One issue of the debate is how to avoid the spread of military-grade satellite technology and data, and especially how to deny it to potential enemies of today, but also of yesterday. However, would such restrictive efforts be effective, and if so, for how long? On the technical level, such a denial appears to be difficult. On the economic one, it is virtually impossible due to the spread of these technologies and the evolution of real and potential international commercial markets. Yet, these are questions of great importance in a world of uncertainties with respect to how access to these technologies and data could affect military postures either in regional or global terms . Hence, the question that should be raised is that of inquiring whether any collective diplomatic initiative can be taken to provide coherent guidelines for both the transfer of such technologies and the use of its data.

1. Dedicated/Non-Dedicated Military-Use Satellites

      Major trends in American capabilities cover both space and ground devices and basically include three types of satellites: signal intelligence, navigation, and early-warning spacecraft. 368  Considerable changes are expected to occur in imagery satellites, where KH-11 spacecraft will be phased out and replaced by KH-12/KH-11+ satellites and the number of which in orbit will be double (four satellites) by the year 2000. Additionally, the number of Lacrosse spacecraft is expected to triple (six satellites). Estimates also indicate that the number of electronic intelligence satellites, such as the Magnum spacecraft, will double to four spacecraft, while that of White Cloud satellites will remain at sixteen.

      The greatest change will occur in the de-commissioning of the five Defence Support Programme (DSP) satellites used to provide early-warning of missile tests and attacks. DSP will be replaced by five new technology Boost Surveillance and Tracking Satellite (BSTS) spacecraft. New early-warning satellites such as the BSTS will be able to detect the launch of ballistic missiles and track them through their flight. In addition, they will also be able to assess the size of boosters on the vehicle and to help with the target acquisition for ballistic missile defence. This type of new multipurpose technology satellite may deeply affect strategic visions for combat capabilities in the twenty-first century.

      As for Russian spacecraft, updated versions of cameras and new types of film were expected to improve spatial resolution and planned to come into service in the mid-1990s. 369  Some reports make reference to a new longer life spacecraft, the Resurs-F2M, which was expected to have its first launch in 1996. 370  Other reports have indicated that a new spacecraft--the "Kuban"--was expected to appear in 1997, which should provide Russian systems with more propellants and therefore a longer duration in outer space. 371 

      In the case of France, HELIOS I was originally expected to be followed by at least five other satellites in the same series. 372  The first two would carry only optical systems, including infra-red sensors. With the successful launch of the first satellite, HELIOS II is under development as planned and is expected to be launched by 2001. Although there seems to be no public statements on other satellites in the series, a third spacecraft was originally planned to be constructed with improved accuracies for infra-red operations and a fourth craft would be capable of Electronic Intelligence (ELINT) missions. A fifth satellite was expected to carry a 1 m resolution SAR system, but development of this technology has come into question due to cost constraints. 373 

      France also develops technologies related to microsatellites capable of electronic/signals intelligence. 374  A French study satellite, designated "Cerise", was also carried in the same Ariane launch with HELIOS I, and is expected to provide the basic platform for future dedicated ELINT satellites. Reports indicate that Japan is another Level II EtSC State that may well develop dedicated military satellites. 375  Japan already possesses the basic technology and is acquiring experience in building non-dedicated military-grade imaging satellites. However, while it faces both legal and political constraints to acquire a dedicated military capability, it appears that such military-grade satellites data could be developed for the international commercial market without major constraints.

      The only EmSC State possessing a military satellite is Israel, with its Ofeq-3 spacecraft capable of providing the country with military-intelligence data. Should present trends in manufacturing capabilities continue, only one or two more EmSC States might develop dedicated military Earth observation satellites in the near future: India and Pakistan. Both may focus on optical systems, but the former may concentrate more on technologies for the detection and tracking of BMs. Little, however, actually permeates through the veil of secrecy into the open literature on any of these potential developments and comments remain conjectural.

      A number of implications can be noted from the above discussion. In terms of spacecraft technologies, while recoverable satellite technologies were developed by the United States, the former Soviet Union and China in the 1960s and 1970s, new possessors of military-grade satellite technologies have opted for long-life spacecraft systems. This implies a more frequent coverage capability system, which in turn indicates that satellite intelligence would be incorporated in military doctrines in a different manner than those in countries which possess recoverable systems. In terms of resolution technology, some reports claim that the most advanced military space surveillance systems have a ground resolution in the order of 10 cm. Few countries, however, have reached such fine ground resolution, but almost half a dozen have already reached quite fine resolution levels on the order of centimetres. It is still too early to ascertain the full military implications of such developments. However, it appears safe to state that implications would probably not only be of national military use, but also extend to the use of such devices for collective security purposes. Concomitantly, technology spin-offs from the military to the civil sector are already on the way. In the long run, this type of development may also be of significant military importance due to the dual-nature of their technologies.

      Some military implications can also be seen in terms of satellite navigation technologies. At its base, this technology is used by commercial airlines, ships, and soon by ordinary vehicles to find their way through busy traffic in cities and freeways. The present Global Positioning System (GPS) provides navigational data to the United States military of an accuracy of 6 m, while limiting the accuracy to the civil sector worldwide to 100 m. 376  Despite this error margin, navigation satellites may play an increasing role of accurately pin-pointing armed forces in distant areas, boosting the accuracy of ballistic and other missiles, as well as a host of other military applications. Given the low cost and easy accessibility of receivers, improvements of the performance of military operations could be achieved not only by sophisticated armies, but also by less technologically-oriented ones.

2. Increases in Military-Use Satellite Missions

      As discussed above, satellite applications have grown both quantitatively and qualitatively over time. A number of fundamentally new military applications of satellites are under development or already operational (see Diagram II.1.A). For example, greater focus has been turned towards increasing assistance by satellites in actual, real-time, combat operations. Exploration of the role of satellites should be emphasized for conventional conflicts, but some attention should also be devoted to contingencies involving non-conventional military equipment. Stereoscopic images of terrain are a clear example. This is a relatively new military application of satellite technology. It provides armed forces with satellite imagery of areas designated to be targeted by air strikes. The French SPOT satellite is a well known civil satellite system that can record in stereo (SPOT stereopairs) mode with 10 m resolution, thus allowing a relief view of a given terrain. Stereopairs compute the height of a specific area, if needed, in a three-dimensional (3D) perspective, computes radar shadow zones, and also generates 3D imagery for simulation systems (see an example in Photo II.1.7). 377 

      Diagram II.1.A: Evolving Military Uses of Satellite Technologies [non disponible]


Photo II.1.7: Example of Satellite Stereoscopic Data (Mont Blanc, France)

© CNES Distribution SPOT IMAGE by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE

      In another area, a prospective application of satellite technology involves a new concept of managing combat down to the battlefield level. This would offer better, continued and more flexible data than presently provided by systems such as unmanned aerial vehicles. In the future so-called digitized battlefield, battle surveillance may well involve the creation of military television networks via a combination of air-mounted and space-based devices. This could be made possible by establishing data links via video systems that would allow top-level decision-makers away from the theatre of operations to view the unfolding, real-time, combat in the field on desktop displays. 378  In addition, new Command and Control (C2) and sensor technologies are expected to join the individual soldier in the battlefield. Such techniques would allow infantry soldiers to detect targets and relay the information to weapon systems prepared to undertake seek and kill operations. 379 

      Two additional battlefield-related applications are worth mentioning here. One is the use of satellite transmission systems to supply medical intervention teams in the battlefield with information and expertise of doctors outside the battle area via an on-line network system: the so called telemedicine application. Some institutions both in the United States and Europe are working on the development of concepts and test-applications. 380  The other application involves direct broadcast satellites. This type of satellite is envisaged to be used in conflicts, just as radio broadcasts and leaflets have been used to conduct psychological warfare in the past. 381  In the area of early-warning of intercontinental-ballistic missile launches, satellites are expected to be evermore accurate, have larger radio ranges, and detect shorter range ballistic missile launches. Yet another prospective application of satellite technologies is the detection of submerged submarines, reportedly by using radar devices to detect a unique pattern of ocean waves caused by submarines. 382 

      Certain military, geo-political, and other implications would follow from the development of the above-mentioned applications. Indeed, some prospective applications could deeply affect military doctrines, although some others may be indifferent to military postures and planning. The first remark to be made is that these new applications are expected to be operational, first and foremost, from the military forces in EtSC States. As a matter of fact, most present and future military applications of satellite technologies are not conducted by EmSC States. As regards battlefield satellite activities, for example, the development of large scale early-warning and navigation systems is not seen as a priority item on the agenda of EmSC States satellite development. The further development of special military communications satellites would be critical for improving the readiness, speed, and efficiency of such new missions. Hence, the development of such capabilities would constitute an important possible indicator of developments in this direction.

      The French monopoly on civilian imagery stereo capability ended in the mid-1990s. Almost all high resolution commercial Earth observation satellites to be placed in orbit as of this period are expected to provide stereo imagery. Therefore, there could be a number of improvements to military operations which would not necessarily depend on one country's satellite capability. Such flexibility renders military implications derived from the advancement of space technologies even more difficult to control.

      Submarine detection is another area that could have fundamental implications for the role of nuclear submarines. This would be the case since submarines are for the most part the centrepiece of strategic BM triads. This is another area where prospective new capabilities would seem to be limited to EtSC States.

3. The Spread of Military-Grade Satellite Data

      Commercial satellite imagery is also, no doubt, of particular importance to international security. As discussed above, despite the fact that some data supplied by certain civilian Earth observation satellites could also serve military purposes, 383  no military-grade satellite data were available in the open market for decades. In the recent past, however, the civilian/military applications gap in satellite technologies for navigation, Earth observation and other satellite applications for civilian and military uses has considerably narrowed. In addition, access to military-grade satellite data has also changed, where more of this type of data is available in the international commercial market. These trends are expected to continue into the near future, although they may vary according to the level of space competence.

      In the Earth observation area, Level I EtSC States have always been more advanced than other States in R&D and operation of dedicated and non-dedicated military satellites. The resolution of their Earth observation spacecraft range from teledetection that provides imagery in the order of hundreds of metres to intelligence which enables the imaging of very small objects on the ground--in the order of centimetres (see Diagram II.1.B). However, the French SPOT IMAGE Corporation (SPOT-IMAGE) (from a Level II EtSC State) was the first company to organize the sale of remote sensing data in the civilian market in 1986. Since then, SPOT has marketed imagery of military-relevant resolution provided by various spacecraft in the SPOT satellite series (see Diagram II.1.C). The first generation of French Earth observation satellites (SPOT-1, 2, 3, and 4) have sensors providing multispectral images with a resolution of 20 m or panchromatic images with approximately 10 m ground resolution.. While SPOT-4 is was placed into orbit in March 1998 with the same resolution of its predecessors, SPOT 5 will be part of a new generation spacecraft. The design work for SPOT-5, which has already begun, is expected to yield ground resolution data nearing 5 m. In fact, civilian Earth observation satellite systems offer a defence service to selected customers. This service enables defence agencies to compile views of targeted areas of different locations.

      The best ground resolution of current commercial satellites is close to 1 m. Imagery acquired by several former Soviet imaging satellite systems started to be marketed by SOYUZKARTA in 1987. SOYUZKARTA offers imagery between 5 and 8 m acquired using KFA-1000 and MK-4 cameras (see Diagram II.1.B). 384  In 1992, imagery resolution available in the commercial market was improved with the services provided by Sovinformsputnik. Sovinformsputnik was able to obtain images from recoverable films of military and State-owned satellites, 385  marketing Earth images with spatial resolution between 2 and 10 m. High resolution data deriving from military satellite systems are provided using KVR-1000, TK-350 and DD-5 cameras. 386  A third service provider, the Priroda Centre of Roskartografia of the Federal Service of Geodesy and Cartography, 387  also markets satellite data obtained in recovery mode--providing images with resolutions between 5 and 30 m. With the creation of the WorldMap consortium in 1993, Priroda's archives of images ranging from 2 to 20 m became available via JEBCO Information Services of London. 388  In addition to these service providers, RPO Planeta, another State organization, is a research and production organization also marketing imagery using Resurs 0 type of capability. However, Planeta's imagery have spacial resolution between 45 to 170 m obtained by transmission of data to the ground via radio-channels. 389 

      A new partnership for the provision of COSMOS Kometa System image has been formed between Sovinformsputnik, Aerial Imaging Corporation, and Microsoft Corporation, providing 2m images and making an archive available which dates back to 1984. 390  Although other Russian systems are expected to be launched before the end of the century, none seem to provide revolutionary technologies, procedures, or resolution capability.

      Imagery from the American LANDSAT satellite system has been available since 1974, but was marketed by EOSAT only in the mid-1990s. Of particular importance in the international commercial market are LANDSAT-4 and 5, which were constructed to provide 30 m ground resolution. A follow-on spacecraft, LANDSAT-6, carried an improved remote sensing device, the Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM), capable of providing 15 m resolution data. However, LANDSAT-6 was lost during launch in 1993 and therefore LANDSAT-5 is still providing imagery. The DoD is one of the four American departments utilising the system's data. In announcing a long-term strategy for the federal agencies involved in the LANDSAT programme, the Bush Administration had elaborated on the DoD's role to undertake, in conjunction with NASA, research and development on remote sensing technology. 391  The directive instructed both agencies to develop and launch LANDSAT-7 and given the technological capability in remote sensing that DoD satellites have, 392  it may be expected that LANDSAT-7, which was launched on 15 April 1999 by a Delta II rocket, will provide at least 15 m panchromatic and 60 m thermal band resolution image capabilities.

      American high resolution imagery of around 1 m appeared in the international commercial market only in 1999. One example is the launching of the EarthWatch Corporation satellite series as of late 1990s. Its first satellite, EarlyBird--lost in December 1997--was expected to provide 3 metres resolution in panchromatic mode and up to 15 m for multispectral scenes. QuickBird, which is scheduled to be launched around 1999-2000, will have the lowest resolution ever in commercial satellite images: 0.82 m for panchromatic and 3.28 m for multispectral services. Also by 2000, Orbimager Corporation will launch Orbview-3, which will provide 1 and 4 m imagery, panchromatic and multispectral services respectively. OrbView-4, shall provide the same imagery as of 2000, with the addition of 8m hyperspectral images. 393  It should also be noted that OrbView imagery is expected to be provided via real-time down-link mode to customers, which would further increase access time by end-users. But it is images from the Space Imaging-EOSAT Ikonos satellite that may provide the first 1m (panchromatic) and 4 m (multispectral) American commercial images in the international market.

      Among other civil optical and radar satellites are the Japanese MOS series with 50 m resolution capability. JERS-1 performance is better since it carries 25 m VNIR and 18 m SAR resolutions. The ADEOS1 satellite shall offer about 7 m panchromatic and 20 m multispectral imagery. However, it is the HIROS satellite series that shall make a quantum jump in Japanese Earth observation capability. HIROS-I, which may resemble JERS-1 with SAR systems in the year 2000, will not add new features but assure continuation of a given capability. Nonetheless, the planned HIROS-II, to be ready in 2005, shall make a significant innovation in Japanese imagery with spacial resolution in the order of 1 metre. Japan will be one of the few countries to provide intelligence-type satellite data in the international commercial market.

      Thirty metres resolution SAR scenes from the ESA's ERS-I and II are also available in the commercial market and can be obtained from, among other sources, SPOT-IMAGE ERS services. By 1999, slightly better resolution should be available with the planned ENVISAT system. With better resolution than ESA spacecraft, the Canadian RADARSAT can provide 10 m SAR ground resolutions, as well as a 30 m VNIR scenes. This spacecraft was successfully launched on 28 November 1995 with a Delta II rocket. 394  On 14 December, RADARSAT provided its first data and on 14 February 1996 its images became officially available in the international market.


Diagram II.1.B: Resolution of Observation Satellite Systems: EtSC States--Level I Countries


Diagram II.1.C: Resolution of Observation Satellite Systems: EtSC States --Level II Countries

      Reportedly, RADARSAT images are delivered more quickly than its counterparts. A follow-on spacecraft, RADARSAT II--with 3 m resolution, should be built to give continuity to the programme. It is scheduled to be launched in 2001. 395 

      Satellite manufacturing technology capabilities by EmSC States have been rather modest for a long time when compared to EtSC States. However, this situation is changing and a growing number of new satellites have acquired high resolution data as of 1995 (see Diagram II.1.D). An important new trend for EmSC States is the provision of such data in the international commercial market. For example, India provides IRS 1A and 1B satellite data with spatial resolutions between 30 to 70 m. It also provides 5.8 m panchromatic and 20 multispectral resolution data from its IRS C which was launched on 28 December 1995 by a Russian Molniya rocket. 396  IRS C data became officially commercially available both within and outside the country as of January 1996.

      The American EOSAT company has become the first service provider of Indian remote sensing satellite data. 397  Of course, this represents a fundamental change in past practices, where EmSC States were limited to receiving and treating satellite data of EtSC States. In 1997, a follow-on satellite, the IRS D, was successfully launched thus ensuring continuity in commercial services. Other planned Indian satellites include the IRS-P5 and IRS-P6. IRS-P5 is scheduled to be launched by 1999-2000 and will have a panchromatic resolution of 2.8 m and also stereoscopic imaging, while the follow-on aircraft will be launched in 2000 with 5.8 m and 23 m for panchromatic and multispectral imaging respectively. 398 

      Satellite data from the Israeli OFEQ-3 spacecraft is unlikely to be available in the commercial market. However, the existence of this satellite illustrates the country's level of space technology independence and advancement. As regards other EmSC States, Argentina, Brazil, Pakistan, and South Africa are still at the stage of developing satellites primarily for their own use which are not expected to provide military-relevant data anytime soon. Nor are they expected to become active competitors in the international commercial market in the near future. Brazil's imaging satellite to be launched in the late 1990s shall be limited to 20 m spacial resolution. South Africa, which had the most advanced planned system with resolutions between 1 and 3 m, has cancelled its programme. Yet, present trends in manufacturing efforts will probably continue and more EmSC States should achieve self-sufficiency in the production of communications, meteorology, and Earth observation satellites within the first two decades of the twenty-first century.


Diagram II.1.D: Resolution of Observation Satellite Systems: EmSC States

4. Potential Uses of Military-Grade Satellite Data Obtained in the International Commercial Market

      Taking into consideration all the potential events in access to military-grade satellite data discussed above, one may ponder what implications increasingly accurate data may have on international security. From the military standpoint, the mere detection of an object or activity may be sufficient, while other tasks may require recognition, identification, or description which are more demanding in terms of resolution. 399  Optimal use of remote sensing data requires at least three procedures: (a) localization of a target area; (b) classification of specific objectives; and (c) analysis of the collected information. A number of techniques and procedures combined may alter generally accepted static parameter requirements, thus improving the capability for military use of satellite data in the international commercial market. Techniques such as computer-aided photo-analysis, multiple overlays, and trained human interpretation are also used to optimize analysis.

      Photo II.1.8 regroups four images which illustrate different stages in the optimization of a satellite image using a scene of the Cairo airport in Egypt as an example. The first image on the upper left corner of the photo shows how a raw data is obtained in a scanner reception system such as the one used by SPOT IMAGE. The upper right image, texture processing, brings out the linear structures such as roads, borders, etc. This procedure also provides a better clarity of the scene. The lower left scene shows the image after a third procedure, local processing contrast, which allows for some details to appear.


Photo II.1.8: Example of a Four-Stage Satellite Imagery Optimization Procedure

© CNES Distribution SPOT Image by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE

      The last processing stage is shown on the lower right of the photo, where all of the different natural and human-input features of the image are assembled over the entire scene. It is only after these procedures that the most optimal conditions for interpretation can be made. In addition, the fact that civil satellites have created a databank of earlier images provides an analyst with the capability to compare previous and updated views, thus increasing the possibilities for detection, recognition, identification, and/or description missions.

      Hence, depending on mission requirements, data from satellites in the international commercial market could eventually be used for military purposes. As an example, a resolution of 4.5 m has been established as necessary to detect an aircraft on the ground using optical sensors, while 0.9 m would be needed to identify the aircraft. 400  Photo II.1.9 illustrates a 10 m spatial resolution scene of another airport area (Geneva, Switzerland). Notice that, even for those who do not know Geneva, it is relatively easy to detect a large white form within the red circle. It is not so easy, however, to recognize it if one does not know what it is. In addition, it is also difficult to identify this white form, and it is impossible to describe what it is: the United Nations Palais des Nations building. In contrast, the Geneva airport is easily identified. One may even detect white objects parked on the aeroplane taxi area and recognize them as aircraft. However, exact identification or description of such aircraft are not possible. This is proven by Photo II.1.10, which shows a "zoomed" extract of the previous image. Regardless of the viewing mode, the spatial resolution does not change and photo interpretation problems are the same.

      Photos II.1.9: First Example of a Ten Metre Satellite Image [non disponible]

© CNES Distribution SPOT Image by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE


Photos II.1.10: Second Example of Ten Metre Satellite Image

© CNES Distribution SPOT Image by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE

      However, certain military missions do not require very fine resolution such as the description of enemy assets in the battlefield, but instead only require detection or recognition of the battlefield environment or the general area where the enemy is or is not situated. In addition, 3D stereo viewing capability may be used to assist in accessing terrain conditions and in devising low-altitude aircraft strike-routes. In same cases, infra-red sensors can detect and recognize long columns of troops moving in the desert and other environments at night. Other sensors, originally designed to detect forest defoliation, could also detect mass vegetation losses in a biological and toxin warfare environment.

      A brief examination of the satellite data that will be available in the international commercial market between now and by the year 2005 provides useful information on their military-grade potentials. 401  Graph II.1.2 presents existing and planned satellite detection capabilities of some established and emerging space-competent States and/or service providers therein, China being an exception. From this graph it is clear that some degree of detection can, or will, be carried out with imagery of satellites from all of the ten countries/group of countries listed. However, for the most part, imagery resolutions would be limited to the detection of large (of 20 m or above), military-relevant objects such as docking and urban areas, submarines on the surface, and military airfields.Graph

      II.1.2: Military-Grade Satellite Detection Capabilities in the International Commercial Market (Existing and Planned Spacecraft until 2005) [non disponible]

Source= Information covering satellite images obtained from governments, agencies, and private companies. Data on capabilities has been defined by the author partially in light of information on resolution necessary for identification, recognition, identification, and description purposes given in "The Implications of Establishing an International Satellite Monitoring Agency", Report of the Secretary-General, Department of Disarmament Affairs, Study Series, No. 9, New York: United Nations Publication, 1983, p. 30; and others.

      Not all of Brazil's planned CBERS's three sensor devices will have military utilities. While the 20 m CCD sensor will provide military-relevant data, CBERS's 80 and 160 m IR-MSS and the 260 m WFI will not. Nor will the 200 m ground spatial resolution provided by CCD of the planned Brazilian SSR1 and SSR2 satellites. This is not the case of India. With its IRS 1A and 1B, Indian satellite imagery can provide military-grade imagery for large structures. But the true innovation is the imagery provided by both IRS 1C and 1D, as well as the future IRS P-6 spacecraft. With 5.8 m resolution data in the international commercial market, Indian images--which have better resolution capability than the present SPOT IMAGE services--have significant military value. There is no need to discuss further the military value of the future Indian IRS P-5 satellite.

      Canadian, ESA, Japanese, and COSMO imagery in the international commercial market also further increase the number of suppliers of high resolution data. RADARSAT imagery provides relevant data detecting objects of 10 m. With its 3 m resolution, RADARSAT II will be the highest SAR available. Japan's 18 m imagery resolution from JERS-1 matches military detection values of most of the above-mentioned sensors. However, it is the ADEOS1 7 to 7.5 m imagery resolution that should diversify, along with Indian data, the sources of supply for relatively high resolution military-grade data in the international commercial market. With such capability, some strategic and tactical objects such as roads and medium-sized surface vessels could be detected.

      If the HIROS-II satellites and the COSMO constellation are completed as planned, then Japanese and COSMO countries' data in the international commercial market will match both American and Russian services--although Japanese spacecraft will not provide an all weather, day and night, capability. Nonetheless, all of these satellites can or will be able to detect more than just military-relevant structures and equipment.

      The higher the resolution demanded, the fewer image sources available in the international commercial market. This can be seen with respect to recognition capability. Note from Graph II.1.3 that Brazilian, Canadian, and ESA imagery would provide recognition only for urban areas and military airfields. Canadian, French, Indian, Japanese, and COSMO imagery would provide better uses of the image. One example is illustrated in Photo II.1.11. A 10 m resolution image available in the international commercial market can detect a missile installation near Basra in Iraq. Recognition of the missiles themselves is not possible, but military experts could probably recognize the type of the installation's general layout and organization. One interpretation locates the missile battery at the intersection of the converging network of roads, while the buildings in the northwest corner of the photo could serve maintenance purposes. This photo therefore highlights the usefulness of this type of resolution for mapping and for the location and recognition of large items or infrastructure. In this connection, such capability could also be extended to the recognition of other large structures such as ports, roads, and possibly land mine fields.

      Graph II.1.3: Military-Grade Satellite Recognition Capabilities in the International Commercial Market (Existing and Planned Spacecraft until 2005) [non disponible]

Source= Information covering satellite images obtained from governments, agencies, and private companies. Data on capabilities has been defined by the author partially in light of information on resolution necessary for identification, recognition, identification, and description purposes given in "The Implications of Establishing an International Satellite Monitoring Agency", Report of the Secretary-General, Department of Disarmament Affairs, Study Series, No. 9, New York: United Nations Publication, 1983, p. 30; and others.

      Photo II.1.11: Satellite Imagery of a Missile Battery: August 1990 (10 m Resolution) [non disponible]

© CNES Distribution SPOT Image by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE

      Photo II.1.12: Satellite Imagery of a Missile Battery: February 1991 (10 m Resolution) [non disponible]

© CNES Distribution SPOT Image by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE

      Note that Photo II.1.12 shows the same missile battery site seven months later--after the allied coalition forces had started military operations. 402  The site might have been a target of air attack since smoke is coming from fuel tanks on fire. However, the image does not allow an expert to assess the damage caused to the missile battery. This is due to the inability of the sensors to penetrate the smoke that masks the site and further analysis is below the threshold of the 10 m resolution. Ten metre resolution imagery therefore offers little in terms of tactical intelligence. Only American, Canadian, COSMO, Indian, Japanese, and Russian imagery could provide damage recognition capability in this case and most of them could recognize all of the structures and objects listed in Graph II.1.3.

      As regards identification capability, it appears that identification missions could be carried out with imagery in the international commercial market from only one EmSC State--India (see Graph II.1.4). However, identification would probably be limited to a few targets of large size. Even French imagery would be limited to a very small number of tasks, and many objects of primary military relevance would not be identifiable.

      Photo II.1.13 illustrates that a 10 m resolution scene can provide detection, recognition, and some identification needs depending on the context of analysis. One can easily note the main features of a tank farm site near the city of Basra, Iraq. The farm contains sixteen tanks. Due to mapping techniques, it is estimated that it measures around 1.5 km2. Each tank can be estimated to be about 90 m in diameter with a capacity of around 35,000 m3. Each tank is surrounded by a levee forming a spill-containment trench. The scene is so clear that one can not only detect and recognize a 3,000 m-long airstrip, but also identify it as a civilian and not military strip; the access road and associated buildings not representing any known military aircraft disposition structure.

      Graph II.1.4: Military-Grade Satellite Identification Capabilitiesin the International Commercial Market (Existing and Planned Spacecraft until 2005) [non disponible]

Source= Information covering satellite images obtained from governments, agencies, and private companies. Data on capabilities has been defined by the author partially in light of information on resolution necessary for identification, recognition, identification, and description purposes given in "The Implications of Establishing an International Satellite Monitoring Agency", Report of the Secretary-General, Department of Disarmament Affairs, Study Series, No. 9, New York: United Nations Publication, 1983, p. 30; and others.

      Photo II.1.14 shows the same tank farm seven months latter. The thick smoke indicates that some of the tanks are on fire, but the resolution is no longer sufficient to identify the status of the airstrip. Hence, it would be impossible to determine whether or not the airstrip has been damaged as in the case of the tanks. In other cases, only very high resolution imagery available in the international commercial market would allow identification of other military assets of importance as shown in Graph II.1.4: medium-sized vessels, aircraft, and land mine fields. It is therefore regarding identification tasks that 1 m resolution becomes an important asset for military purposes.

      Photo II.1.13: Satellite Imagery of a Tank Farm Site: August 1990 (10 m Resolution) [non disponible]

© CNES Distribution SPOT Image by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE

      Photo II.1.14: Satellite Imagery of a Tank Farm Site: February 1991 (10 m Resolution) [non disponible]

© CNES Distribution SPOT Image by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE

      Graph II.1.5: Military-Grade Satellite Description Capabilities in the International Commercial Market (Existing and Planned Spacecraft until 2005) [non disponible]

Source= Information covering satellite images obtained from governments, agencies, and private companies. Data on capabilities has been defined by the author partially in light of information on resolution necessary for identification, recognition, identification, and description purposes given in "The Implications of Establishing an International Satellite Monitoring Agency", Report of the Secretary-General, Department of Disarmament Affairs, Study Series, No. 9, New York: United Nations Publication, 1983, p. 30; and others.

      The use of most satellite imagery available in the international commercial market for description purposes would provide very poor results. Description is extremely demanding in terms of resolution, as can be seen in Graph II.1.5. Images from most of the ten countries/group of countries listed are not sufficient for description purposes. For example, the 5 m resolution data shown in Photo II.1.15 provides considerably more interpretation capability than the 10 m resolution which has been available in the commercial market for years. However, it is the 2 m resolution scene in Photo II.1.16 that illustrates how such resolution data not only can provide for detection, recognition, and identification capabilities, but also for some description of objects on the ground. The 2 m panchromatic image is enhanced for better interpretation by merging it with lower resolution multispectral satellite image (30 m in this case). No doubt, this level of resolution has significant military utility.

      Only American, Canadian, COSMO, Indian, Japanese, and Russian imagery will be able to provide some minor military-grade data for structures and objects requiring image resolution greater than 1 m. However, the majority of the items listed in Graph II.1.5 require resolution better than 1 metre, and some even require resolution capabilities of less than 30 cm.

      Photo II.1.15: Example 5 m Resolution Imagery (Panchromatic) [non disponible]

Courtesy of EOSAT

      Photo II.1.16: Example 2m Resolution Imagery (Merged 2 m Panchromatic Resolution with 30 m Multispectral Resolution [non disponible]

Courtesy of EOSAT

      Although EmSC States have undertaken the development of different civil satellite applications and resolution capabilities, from the technical standpoint their military utility has remained quite limited in the past. It seems clear from the above discussion that, apart from Indian spacecraft, it is not necessarily EmSC States that can provide the best civil satellite resolution for military-grade imagery in the international commercial market. This phenomenon is due to several factors. One is because of EmSC States' low level of military-grade data. A second reason is their small numbers, coupled with the small number of satellites they have in orbit. Again, with the exception of India, most EmSC States' Earth observation satellites under development are first and second generation devices. Another reason is the short lifetime and usual absence of quick follow-on replacement spacecrafts. A forth reason could be attributed to a lack of financial investments. The R&D costs for high resolution sensors are quite significant and require either a potential manufacturer to explore its services or a demanding need to provide returns in terms of security issues.

      However, in most of the cases discussed above, even imagery from some EtSC States cannot provide military-grade data. It is rather the very high resolution of American and Russian service providers, coupled with potential capabilities in Japan and COSMO countries, that can or will provide the bulk of high resolution military-grade data in the international commercial market. If India is not counted, the greatest increase in high resolution satellites will therefore occur in EtSC States. Concomitantly, this increase should be accompanied by a progressive change in image accessibility, notably due to new trends in EtSC States' policies of satellite data dissemination.

      Widespread access to this kind of imagery may have a series of geo-political/military implications and much effort has to be made to understand the new role of high resolution imagery in the international commercial market. 403  Military roles for such data are multifarious, and not only as regards national use but also collective action. High resolution imagery could be used in traditional military conflict situations to increase the accuracy of missile trajectories, positioning of artillery shells and other heavy weaponry. It could also provide maps and other logistic guidance tools to civil or military users.

      Consequently, this level of imagery resolution could give a more sophisticated tool not only to the so called spy-satellite possessor States or their allies, but potentially also to non-satellite-possessor States, illegal entities such as terrorist and guerrilla groups, and individuals. Thus, besides the clear support to military planning and activities in future conflicts, access to this data could also affect the relationship between law enforcement and illegal groups, particularly by creating a new level of expectation and anxiety around the possibility of surprise attacks. In doing so, it could further expose other targets which raise the deterrent value against threats to industrial complexes, population centres, and a long list of other sensitive objectives. This new access to high resolution imagery could also increase the law enforcement community fear that such access could help these groups to, inter alia:

  • prepare their targeting options better;
  • identify ground and water sites with precision;
  • monitor military, border patrol, police and other troop deployments in exercises and in real contingences;
  • ascertain inventories of law enforcement equipment; and
  • prepare counter-actions and diminish the effectiveness of surprise attacks.

      Yet, these fears and warnings resemble the debate on the widespread access to navigation systems, not only because, here too, only EtSC States are capable of constructing and launching large constellations of satellites such as NAVSTAR, but because navigation satellites also provide a specific kind of service that tends to improve activities aimed at both civil and military purposes. (It should be reminded that NAVSTAR is a military system, although any signal receiver could apply its utilization for civil or military purposes.) Nonetheless, after many years of its availability on the international market, it seems that access to navigation data has not significantly changed any military balance, be it regional or global.

      In the long run, significant increases in dual-use satellite capabilities are not expected to be limited to EtSC States, and it is difficult to ascertain at this stage how supplier States will behave in such an eventuality. Technology transfer would probably be an important factor in stepping-up capabilities for the

      manufacturing of military-grade reconnaissance, navigation, communication and other dual-use satellites in some EmSC States. In addition, satellite technology represents a formidable commercial market not only for their use but also for their manufacture. Hence, other international security and economic implications will be addressed in more detail in the next chapter.

C. Multinational Initiatives

      Increasing access to outer space technologies also has important positive implications for international security. Indeed, for many applications and users, these technologies were first developed via military programmes and co-operation involving military applications and have been mostly limited to the use of national technical means (NTMs) of verification and/or between military allies. However, from the late 1970s on-wards, several proposals have been tabled in different fora for a multilateral use of outer space technologies to improve the international community's capabilities to cope with security concerns. Proposal have ranged from France's 1978 suggestion to create a large organization such as the International Satellite Monitoring Agency (ISMA), to smaller sized institutions such as the 1986 Canadian Peace Satellite (PAXSAT) concept proposal to develop satellites specifically for the verification of arms control and disarmament. For various political, technical, and financial reasons, none of these proposals have become a reality.

      However, new challenges posed by the changing international security agenda have called for a reassessment of the traditional NTMs approach to military space. Co-operation in space activities is increasingly directed towards the strengthening of international security. For example, the United Nations Security Council and the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) on Iraq have had access to overhead imagery during the implementation of UN Resolution 987. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is also said to have had access to overhead imagery of the DPRK's nuclear facility areas in 1994. Several regional initiatives have been proposed as of the early 1990s concerning the multilateral use of outer space technologies for international security, notably for the sharing of satellite data. On a more global level, proposals have been made contemplating the sharing of outer space applications in a comprehensive nuclear-test ban agreement, as well as proposals to improve the safety of the exploration of outer space.

      An entirely new dimension of the multilateral use of outer space technologies is found in United Nations Peace Operations (UNPOs). Traditionally, blue helmets have operated without outer space technology. Indeed, the question is often asked as to what outer space technologies could best serve the international community under the UN flag. What political and diplomatic implications would flow from these new applications? And what financial ramifications would they involve, especially in light of current budgetary constraints?

      Diagram II.1.E: Past and Prospective Evolution of Satellite Applications for International Security [non disponible]

      As illustrated in Diagram II.1.E, there is an ongoing evolution in the use of national, regional, and multinational technical means of satellite services for international security. The grey line between military-use proper on the one hand and civilian-use proper on the other is disappearing. A non-hierarchical approach, characterized by simultaneous multiple-use of military and civil applications by the same spacecraft, is an increasingly common characteristic of new satellite systems. Little, however, is actually known about the different objectives, structures, and status of implementation of various proposals in this evolution. Nor is it known to what extent countries are, or will be, sharing available and prospective resources. These are important issues in themselves, but perhaps more so in light of the various political, social, cultural, and other circumstances particular to each of these initiatives. There is a real need, therefore, to ascertain the geo-political implications of such trends, especially since a State's access to outer space technologies is an important element characterizing its participation in multilateral initiatives.

      Hence, the implications of multilateral use of outer space technologies for international security are numerous. In some instances, these initiatives could be a potential platform to build confidence among States, not least with respect to outer space activities. In addition, they could also provide both the rationale and the opportunity for technology transfers, while at the same time carrying the potential for technology and cost-sharing in the development of outer space technologies.

1. Regional Security Issues

      One fundamental lesson of the 1991 Gulf War is the shift from the potential of a US/USSR or NATO conflict to actual, but more limited, regional wars. In addition, the unpredictability of international security, particularly in its different regional dimensions, was further emphasized by the emergence of nationalism and ethic conflicts after the end of the Cold War. The new security paradigm, still under formation today, is therefore characterized by the re-thinking of security in regional terms.

      The multilateral use of civil and military satellite data and their ground reception stations in regional structures is a new drive in this direction. Here emphasis is not limited to the monitoring of activities within regions, but also of over-the-boarder political, military, and other security-related concerns. This constitutes a clear change from the principle of monitoring and verifying arms limitations and disarmament agreements via the practice of NTMs. Verification of the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty is believed to provide the opportunity for a useful experience in this regard. However, outer space technologies are already shared among different institutions. The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE, formally CSCE), for example, use satellite terminals assigned to the United Nations.

      Nevertheless, more far-reaching, permanent and complete systems are under development. Europe is one area of attention, and the new stimulus given to a revitalization of the Western European Union (WEU) a case in point. The Middle East is another area, with the launching of the Madrid peace process. South East Asia is yet another region where multilateral sharing of satellite data could benefit international security--particularly given the intensive Chinese, Indian, and Pakistani drives towards the development of outer space technologies. In all of the above cases, support is given to ideas aimed at the building and strengthening of regional confidence and security measures. Hence, outer space is often seen as an area where significant new roles of its varied applications could be a catalyst for human, technology, and other resources.

a. The Western European Union Satellite Centre (WEUSC

      New roles and tasks were given to the Western European Union (WEU) within the framework of the Maastricht Treaty. This new role for the WEU was directly connected with the development of the European Union's "Common Foreign and Security Policy". Based on two axes, the WEU is expected to become an operational European defence system, while also acting "... as a means to strengthen the European pillar of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)." 404  It is therefore within the boundaries of such policy that the WEU Satellite Centre (WEUSC) in Torrejón, Spain, shall operate. 405  The Centre shall possess adequate technical means which could assist the European Union in the future to conduct a defence and foreign policy, while at the same time providing the Union with competence in the following two areas. 406 

      Political and Diplomatic Issues

  • An autonomous observation and interpretation capability;
  • A European contribution to NATO's satellite observation and interpretation needs;
  • A credible space-based tool which would complement American NTMs; and
  • A common programme to further unify European institutions.

      Industrial and Economic Issues

  • In further developing the capabilities of the European aerospace industry;
  • In keeping the Union's industrial capabilities fit for international competition;
  • In pooling knowledge and standardization of methods;
  • In sharing costs of financially demanding R&D for state-of-the-art technology; and
  • In furthering European economic development, particularly in light of European Unification.

      These are logical motivations in a period of changing security and budgetary constraints. In concrete terms, the Centre must address issues at two distinct levels. One involves human resources and services, and the other technology and equipment. In the first case, the Centre should develop interpretation methods and the training of image analysis specialists. In the second case, it should possess technical capabilities to provide the Union, in real-time, with the capability to observe, monitor, and assess the following activities within and surrounding Europe: 407 

  • Treaty verification;
  • Development of unstable political/military situations;
  • Humanitarian activities and the protection of civilian populations;
  • Weapons proliferation, especially ballistic missiles;
  • Environmental and other natural disasters; and
  • Illegal activities related to crop culture and sea shipping.

      A "window" has been left open for "...the Centre to undertake tasks for all the bodies of the WEU, the Member States and other organizations as agreed by the Council." 408  This flexible language would not only allow the Centre to work with other European organizations, but also with entities of a more global nature such as the United Nations. Flexibility is also seen in terms of data reception sources, since the Centre is expected to interpret airborne images in addition to satellite-derived ones.

      European and North American countries have a long and solid history of co-operation in civil space activities with large organizations and programmes such as those of ESA and Arianespace. It is therefore natural that the Centre should obtain data from present and future European and American satellites such as SPOT (10 m panchromatic and 20 m multi-spectral), LANDSAT (presently at 30 m thematic mapper), and ERS-I (30 m synthetic aperture radar) spacecraft. This has been further consolidated with the first three-party European co-operation in military satellite manufacturing. The creation of the Torrejón Centre is an important additional step towards multinational co-operation in military space and the novelty is, of course, WEUSC's access to Hèlios I 409  (reportedly between 50 cm and 4 m) data.

      However, access to data of the above-mentioned four satellites may not be sufficient to fulfill all WEUSC tasks. Satellite coverage problems are likely to arise, especially in regard to the long-term planning of both the WEU and the European Union's memberships. For example, as shown in Map II.1.6, the territory of the ten Members of the WEU can be covered by these present four satellites, 410  but an increase to its membership would probably have implications for such capabilities. This is particularly with respect to Scandinavian and Eastern European countries, which enjoy different membership status within the WEU. 411  With the sighing of the Maastricht Treaty, WEU Members have invited NATO Members to join in the WEU.

      It is difficult to predict how the issue of membership will evolve, but it is certain that creating different levels of access to data provided by the WEUSC may pose some internal problems. Will NATO Members of Partnership for Peace (PfP), which are already WEU Associate Partners, be invited to join as full members of the WEU? Will the Russian Federation, which is a member of PfP, join the WEU? Naturally, if the answer to any of these questions is yes, satellite coverage capabilities will have to be greatly increased. This could be done, for example (although it has not been raised as an issue for discussion), by incorporating data reception from Russian military satellites, or by accessing data from EmSC States' spacecraft having European coverage and high resolution cameras such as the Indian IRS satellite system: probably IRS 1A and 1B satellites with 30 to 70 m resolution, but certainly the planned IRS C and D 5.8 m panchromatic and 25 m multispectral spacecraft. While the IRS-P6 will provide continuity in 5.8 imagery, the IRS-P5 would considerably boost the level of military-grade date providing 2.8 m resolution.

      To some extent, the Israeli Offeq 3 military satellite would presumably be able to cover some parts of the European territory, but its data are not accessible in the commercial market.

      Moreover, present satellite intelligence resolution capabilities are in the visible band of the optical spectrum. Other technology sensors and greater revisit periods would therefore have to be accessed to improve the ability of the WEUSC to fulfil its tasks. The only spacecraft that may be of some use and which was operational as of 1995 is the RADARSAT (20 m synthetic aperture radar) spacecraft and RADARSAT II, with its 3 m SAR images will greatly increase the options for the WEUSC image acquisition. Since SPOT 4 provides data resolutions similar to its predecessors, and LANDSAT 7 and SPOT 5 (both providing 5 m panchromatic and 10 m multi-spectral) would be in the position to service the WEUSC only as of 1999 and 2001 respectively.

      Beyond these systems, the WEUSC would have to consider accessing data provided by the forthcoming commercial satellites as of 1999, such as the American OrbiView, QuickBird, and Ikonos, and the Japanese HIROS-II spacecraft.


Map II.1.6: WEUSC Satellite Coverages

      It is in this context that efforts are being undertaken to devise new ways to improve WEU's satellite observation capabilities either by developing its own system or via an independent European monitoring satellite system (see Diagram II.1.F). 412  In the first case, discussions may evolve towards providing data to the WEUSC from HELIOS I and II optical sensors, other planned SAR satellites, and future national small spacecraft by the end of this century. Interoperability with future data relay satellites and national information centres could be added to these systems. In the second case, studies on the multiuser possibilities of such systems are being conducted in various forms. One example is the study undertaken by a think tank composed of members of European industry--the European Control by Satellite (ECOSAT). 413 

      The study is aimed at proposing solutions in respect to the organization of R&D and different ways in which such a system could be exploited by European companies. 414  Another example is the COSMO Project proposal by a combination of Italian, Spanish, and Greek companies. The COSMO architecture consists of a constellation of small optical and SAR sensor satellites (about 600 km) in low orbits (around 500 km) for the observation the Mediterranean Basin, providing imagery in the order of 2.5 m spatial resolution. In May 1995, the WEU "Ministerial Declaration of Lisbon" declared its support of work in this direction.


Diagram II.1.F: Potential WEUSC High Resolution Image Systems

b. The Middle East Proposal

      While space observation capabilities are an important element of the European Union's ability to make independent political and military choices, the eventual creation of a regional satellite data interpretation centre in the Middle East is motivated by somewhat different reasons. In the case of the Middle East, regional space observation capabilities would fall within the framework of the peace process. In this context, acquiring such capabilities would be one element of the various selective or collective measures aimed at the building of confidence between States in the region. Additionally, co-operation in space activities would to a large extent depend on the evolution of the peace process itself. Hence, the creation of such a centre is closely associated with political will which, in this part of the world--perhaps more than anywhere else--seems unpredictable.

      The French Delegation to the Arms Control and Regional Security (ACRS) Working Group meeting 415  presented a proposal at its Tunis 13-15 December 1994 session, to conduct a feasibility study on the possibility of regional co-operation concerning satellite imagery. This study, referred to as "Regional Co-operation for Satellite Imagery" (RECOSI), was presented for consideration of the Working Group at the May-June 1995 ACRS meeting in Helsinki. 416  RECOSI has been proposed to be developed with a long term perspective and distinctly separated into two phases: the first phase would be limited to civil satellite applications, while the second one would extend co-operation into security matters. In essence, RECOSI would be aimed at building confidence between countries in the region and outside partners, as well as developing a collective security system.

      The proposal briefly scans some activities related to satellite data detection carried out by countries of the ACRS Working Group either independently or with international co-operation--be them countries or international organizations. It concludes that a significant movement towards such activities is present in that region: most ACRS countries are involved in one area or another of satellite data detection, including the development of programmes on education and research. In addition, Israel and Saudi Arabia already possess and operate SPOT ground stations.

      As an area-specific proposal, RECOSI is expected to focus on issues of priority in the region, particularly those of common interest such as soil and water issues, management of natural and historical resources, as well as better identification of boarders and other areas. Major themes that constitute possible axes of co-operation in the early stages of RECOSI would therefore include the following:

      Desertification and agropastoral resources;

      The Mediterranean environment;


      Archaeological research;

      Thematic cartography; and

      Sea pollution control. 417 

      Work on of these themes would not have to start from scratch since individual countries are already working on them. Perhaps the most important aspect of this proposal is therefore pulling human and other resources together (including the participation of Israel) to undertake work as a team exploiting the interrelationship of needs and resources in the region. In this regard, the proposal makes reference to the first steps in the creation of RECOSI as the development of an assistance network based on existing structures which would, first and foremost, provide:

      Appropriate access to available data;

      The means to create a data exchange network;

      The means to further exploit the results of existing programmes;

      A structure to create a regional consultancy organ to ensure the flow of information between members; and

      A forum to set priorities and develop projects to meet new requirements. 418 

      A subsequent stage could then incorporate more military-oriented issues. This would nevertheless depend on the reaching of an agreement to establish a security system including all the parties. Conceivably, this stage would involve the collective use of satellite data in view of providing services to the following:

      The accomplishment and verification of confidence-building measures;

      The verification of arms control and disarmament agreements, including sufficiency rules; and

      The monitoring of crisis prevention and management.

      While not exhaustive, the topics to be addressed both in the civil- and security-oriented stages of RECOSI indicate that a regional satellite observation capability in the Middle East could well have similar technical requirements to those of the WEUSC. This would also be the case due to ACRS countries regional proximity to Europe. In the case of civil activities, the ESA's ERS satellites (30 m Synthetic Aperture Radar) do not provide better resolution imagery than the SPOT satellite family. The data from future LANDSAT satellites and present Indian IRS spacecraft (the latter providing imagery between about 70 and 30 m) would also be limited to fulfilling selective tasks. In addition, as illustrated in Map II.1.7, not all ACRS countries are presently covered by proposed satellite systems, nor do all of them receive data from existing systems.

      As regards security-related issues, data resolution requirements indicate that the SPOT satellite stands as the only operational commercial system that could provide imagery to assist in fulfilling numerous tasks, notably with respect to the monitoring of crisis situations and peace operations. However, some tasks related to accountability of troops and heavy weapon deployments would most likely necessitate resolution better than 10 m. Therefore, the Israeli Offeq satellite stands as the most interesting regional capability that could improve the resolution of RECOSI's imagery. While the exact resolution of Offeq 3 is unknown, it is generally believed to be between 1 and 3 m. Yet, it is unlikely that Israel would share such satellite data with countries in the region without a solid, total peace process well on the way.


Map II.1.7: ACRS Countries Satellite Coverage

      Better resolution imagery would therefore be available only in the year 2001 with SPOT 5; or by accessing data from the Hèlios satellite, although here too there has been little said on the possibility of accessing data from the former spacecraft. Another option is to access data from American or Japanese commercial satellites. This appears to be the most likely solution for the near future, especially since a Saudi Arabian company will be the service provider for the Middle-East region of 1 to 8 m data from OrbView satellites. 419 

2. Global Security Issues

      Proposals to utilize outer space technologies in global-oriented structures are significantly different from regional initiatives. For instance, considering the nature of global regimes and their field of application, the likelihood of a greater distribution of participation is higher. This is certainly the case with respect to verification of an eventual agreement banning nuclear tests, and it could also be said of a regime aimed at space activities and space debris monitoring. However, differences are not only due to the scope of participation, but also as regards technologies involved--for example proposals on the creation of a satellite trajectography centre and space debris surveillance, which call for the use of Earth-based devices instead of space-based ones. For either case, the building of both confidence and security in outer space activities is part of proposals.

      However, as in the case of regional initiatives, access to outer space technologies is an important asset. EtSC States are naturally expected to provide technology and services. In contrast, EmSC States could also participate in such global ventures. Three examples are worth mentioning here: verification of an agreement on nuclear tests; the creation of an Earth-to-space monitoring network; and improving the implementation of United Nations peace operations.

a. Verification of an Agreement on Nuclear Tests

      Earth-based technologies related to the detection of earthquake activities, gases, and other agents are expected to constitute the core of verification techniques of the Comprehensive Test-ban Treaty (CTBT) once the CTBT Organization is fully operational. For the most part, these technologies consist of seismic technical means for underground test activities, radionuclide and infrasound for the atmosphere, and hydroacoustic for underwater. 420  In all of these cases, their instruments and techniques related to on-site inspection procedures and automated data processing are expected to be installed in ground stations at different strategic locations around the globe. 421 

      Nonetheless, outer space technologies could also be applicable to the monitoring and verification of compliance to a CTBT agreement: notably, nuclear explosion detection, imagery, and telecommunications techniques. They could be aimed at contributing to various Earth-based technologies in view of detecting, localizing, and identifying non-compliance with a test-ban in all environments. One example is a proposal which was made at the Conference on Disarmament that contemplates the use of American nuclear detection sensors in GPS satellites. The possible role of satellite monitoring in the CTBT's International Monitoring System (IMS) is defined in terms of the provision to the IMS of all relevant data to nuclear explosion detection obtained by the satellite(s) owned by each State Party. 422  In addition, provisions are also made to equip future spacecraft with nuclear explosion sensing equipment, as well as to transmit on-line all the satellite monitoring data received and processed by ground stations designated by the Organization of the CTBT to the International Data Centre (IDC). In all of these cases, access to such data would be ensured to all State Parties. This would constitute an important development, particularly in light of the increase in military-grade satellites and the fact that such spacecraft are being considered for development by Level I EtSC States, as well as by a number of other EmSC States.

      However, there was not enough support in the CD to follow-up on this issue, especially from delegations of countries which already possessed this type of technology. Therefore, it was not possible to change the final language of these articles in the Treaty to accommodate the different views of potential data suppliers, notably by eliminating any reference to the obligation of supplying satellite data, thus allowing the use of such technology at the discretion of each State Party. In addition, possessors of this technology did not openly supported the idea of supplying satellite data free of charge in an universal agreement. Hence, some mechanism assuring the purchase of nuclear detection data would also have to be conceived in order to stimulate potential supplier States to agree with the idea of disseminating their data.

      In the case of satellite imagery, this application has already proven its use in the monitoring and verification of bilateral US/Soviet-Russian agreements. In an universally-oriented agreement such as the CTBT, the case for the use of satellite imagery is an argument which is further sustained by the need to monitor compliance on a routine basis of many more sites at great distances. Additionally, imagery would also help in providing data both prior and after on-site inspections are carried out. 423  Satellite technologies could therefore conceivably be used to assist monitoring and/or verification by providing the following services:

  • Images of nuclear test sites, centres, and their surroundings;
  • The means for the creation of databases on nuclear test sites and centres; and
  • Detection of nuclear explosions via the use of nuclear detection sensors.

      The use of satellite imagery was also considered in the then rolling text in a very general manner. Under the general topic of "Use of Satellite Data and Other Methods", the idea was debated of providing the Technical Secretariat of the CTBT with the legal basis to use satellite images and other technical methods of verification which are not an integral part of the IMS. 424  Satellite imagery would be provided by State Parties and interpreted by the Technical Secretariat, although some delegations argued that the Technical Secretariat should be able to provide technical assistance to establish, operate, and maintain any additional means of verification. Much is however expected of telecommunications technologies in the CTBT agreement when the IMS is fully operational. Basic techniques would have to be put into place to assist an array of other technologies to assure the operation of speedy and reliable fixed and mobile systems. One concrete example is transmission of data collected from regional arrays of seismometers, which needs to be sent via satellite links to a distant central data centre for analysis. 425  This is seen as particularly important in areas where the number and reliability of local phone lines are not optimal, especially since a good number of nuclear sites are located in weakly populated areas with minimal local infrastructures. The main tasks of telecommunications means would therefore be to provide:

  • Communication links in inspection areas;
  • Data transfers; and
  • Dissemination of inspection results to parties.

      For all of the above technologies, but perhaps more so for imagery, the issue of control of data and interpretation is of crucial importance. Training of personnel and cost are also elements that should not escape scrutiny. As in the case of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), which was not conceived to operate using space-based data, the agreement prohibiting nuclear testing was reached without reference to Earth observation technologies. Like the CWC, there appears to be no legal barrier which would prevent their use, provided that the political will arises in the future and that financial conditions are viable.

      A decision to employ these technologies would presumably be easier if the number of potential suppliers is large and if it includes EtSC States as well as EmSC ones. In addition, demands for the use of outer space technologies would presumably be great. Given the magnitude of verification requirements in such an agreement, it is likely that EmSC States and less space-oriented countries would also have a chance to share their knowledge and experience with EtSC States. Moreover, access to these technologies would not only imply a possibility to employ them, but also to provide them in the agreement's verification regime. Therefore, the option to include Earth observation technologies in the CTBT is still a valuable one and could be reconsidered in future review conferences of this agreement.

b. The Creation of an Earth-to-Space Monitoring Network

      Another new role that outer space technologies could play to serve international security is that of collective monitoring of space activities. 426  This role appears important since considerable progress could be made to improve the existing body of international law of outer space, notably in three main areas: the exchange of information related to planned or scheduled space and related launches, notification of these activities, and the observance of pre-set behaviour in the operation of orbiting satellites and space debris. All of these issues have already been discussed at the Geneva-based Ad Hoc Committee on the Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space (PAROS), but none have been identified as meriting a negotiating mandate.

      However, the monitoring of potentially dangerous civil and military activities could conceivably be a good candidate for negotiations. This would include uncontrolled re-entries of large objects (more than a few tons in mass) or of satellites carrying nuclear power systems, only a few tens of which are in low-Earth orbit at any time. It could also include the monitoring of explosions or collisions, both intentional and accidental, generating dense debris swarms in "crowded" regions of space, as well as close encounters or rendez-vous involving large space objects--e.g., "sensitive" military satellites or manned spacecraft. Last but not least, such capabilities could monitor the development of potentially dangerous or particularly destabilising military space and related activities: for example, ASAT or space-related ballistic missile defence (BMD) tests, ballistic missile developments, construction of large military platforms, emplacement of space mines, and the launch of ASAT-related nuclear-powered satellites, or that of satellites carrying powerful radars.

      Another objective could be the monitoring of existing agreements related to outer space activities, specifically the 1975 Registration Convention or incidents related to the Liability Convention. For example, improving the Registration Convention could consist of better structuring the notification of satellite characteristics, whereabouts and activities in general, as well as those of rocket launches. Notification would start prior to launch activities and continue until their completion. Such measures would have to be undertaken under conditions that would ensure the confidentiality of the notified information.

      A concrete step would be a revision of Article IV, which requires the registration of the semimajor axis, eccentricity, and inclination of all launched objects. No information can be inferred from these parameters concerning the exact orientation of the orbit in three-dimensional space, the position of the spacecraft along the orbit at a given instant in time, or on the orbital changes due to fairly frequent manoeuvres during their operational lifetime. A more robust notification regime would therefore require a full set of orbital parameters to be submitted by the spacecraft's owner State (or agency) from time to time. This set, as it is argued, should be similar to the two-lines orbital elements currently distributed by NASA, and should include six orbital elements (semimajor axis, eccentricity, inclination, longitude of ascending node, argument of perigee, true or mean anomaly at epoch) at a given time, or epoch t.  427 

      The creation of a space debris inventory is also argued to serve both international security and safety of space activities. On one account, notification of debris formation and transfer of orbiting devices in the end of their active life to litter orbits, would increase knowledge on the evolution of space debris. Moreover, for the inventory to reflect a more comprehensive picture of the space debris population, the scope of information exchange should be extended to cover all types of space debris.

      Another measure would consist of establishing watchout zones. This would require: (a) notification of third-party objects that perform close passes, approaches, and shadowing manoeuvres near orbiting objects, and (b) continuous mutual monitoring of these satellites' behaviour during such fly-bys.

      The establishment of an international Earth-to-Space Monitoring Network (ESMON) is therefore seen by some experts as an appropriate way of addressing these issues. First, the international network could provide the opportunity to: (a) co-ordinate and use notified information for Confidence- and Security-Building Measures (CSBMs) needs and (b) develop multilateral monitoring and verification systems. Second, the establishment of an international ESMON could be a time-saving endeavour since a great number of Earth-to-space monitoring techniques and technologies already exist. In fact, some of these techniques and technologies are being used either by national armed forces or by the scientific community both in national programmes and through international co-operation. Nonetheless, this does not mean that the establishment of an ESMON would be easy and cost-free, especially since it would require considerable co-ordination and management efforts.

      Third, there is a present need for the scientific community, the commercial/industrial sectors of space activities, and other potential users to access Earth-to-space imagery and other data. This need shall increase in the future. An international ESMON would provide the opportunity for this type of data to be accessed by potential users. It would also share costs in organizing the network and would provide capital from this prospective market. In addition, such a network could also provide the necessary experience for the future creation of another institution with a larger role and focus.

      Forth, the scope of an international ESMON devoted to CSBMs in outer space would transcend international security concerns proper; its dynamics could provide a spin-off effect into different sectors of space activities. No doubt, the dividends of progressively increasing measures of confidence and security would be shared by EtSC and EmSC States alike, and also by the international community at large. Concomitantly, by encouraging universal participation, an international ESMON would promote global co-operation while at the same time fostering technology transfers.

c. Improving the Implementation of United Nations Peace Operations

      United Nations Peace Operations (UNPOs) cover a large scope of activities. During most of the United Nations fifty years of existence, UNPOs have been largely confined to peace-keeping, humanitarian, and election-observation missions which have not required highly sophisticated technical means to support their activities. In the last five years or so, the number of UNPOs has quantitatively increased and changed in their nature. At present, UNPOs also include peace-making and peace-enforcement, as well as nation-building operations. In addition, unlike traditional UNPOs, the demand for sophisticated technical means has increased and efforts have yet to be made to fully understand the potential role space technologies could play in this context. This need to improve the technical means of UN operations has recently been emphasized by both Member States of the United Nations and the Secretary-General, calling to restructure the way UNPOs are conducted in the field. It is no longer practical in the 1990s to conceive of UNPOs as in the 1980s: Somalia and the former Yugoslavia are two examples.

      In recent years, outer space technologies have played ever more important roles in United Nations peace-related operations. The experience of UNSCOM on Iraq is a case in point. Special communications antenna providing links through INMARSAT systems was and continues to be used in the region. Navigation and location technologies have helped inspectors to find their whereabouts in Iraq. Site-monitoring data, provided before and after inspections, have also helped decision-making on the ground, and at the regional and principal headquarters. However, as the nature of UNSCOM indicates, these have been specific and ad hoc applications which in some cases were provided by Member States and are not permanent UN capabilities.

      Satellite technologies can make UNPOs more effective. Some operations have already benefited from satellite applications. In most cases, however, access to such data has been limited to some national military contingents, to a specific type of application made temporally available by a handful of Member States, or in other selective manners. The equipment capability of UN military contingents to some extent reflect that of their respective national military preparedness. For example, EtSC States that have integrated military satellite capabilities in their armed forces tend to support activities of their soldiers with such means, while other nations have to rely on leased commercial satellite capabilities or turn to non-space related equipment. This is particularly true in the case of overhead imagery.

      A comprehensive assessment of the space technologies that could improve UN operations is increasingly perceived as needed. At present, two projects at the UN envisage the linking of regional and global systems via VSAT [Very Small Aperture Terminals] systems for communication between headquarters and field operations. It is not clear, however, if and to what extent this capability would cover the needs of military forces as well. A priori, five areas of technology applications appear important in this discussion (telecommunications, positioning, broadcasting, overhead imagery, and telemedicine) as shown below.

(i). Telecommunications

      Undoubtably, appropriate communication methods are a vital element of any military operation, be it offensive, defensive, based on maintaining peace or a given status quo. It follows that the disruption of communication means may lead to undesirable and indeed dangerous situations. In the case of UNPOs, communication problems could lead to political or military misunderstanding of intentions and events, as well as could jeopardize or impede the implementation of humanitarian and related missions. Under normal circumstances, communication in a theatre of operations is assured via small radio systems owned by the different military contingents or the civil personnel, the local network of telephone, fax, and, and/or TV devices. However, various events could affect either the access to or the functioning of such communication systems under special situations, such as:

  • limitation of local equipment;
  • denial of access to local equipment by warring factions, militia, and/or governments;
  • destruction of local equipment due to the intensity of fighting or sabotage operations; and
  • hilly or other inappropriate local terrain for radio communications.

      One example is when UNSCOM inspection teams cannot access reliable communications means in Iraq and can therefore use portable INMARSAT reception capable antennas. UNPOs in the former Yugoslavia and Somalia offer two further examples. In the case of Somalia, and to a large extent the former Yugoslavia, even national or international TV and radio networks were better equipped than UN personnel. Improving UN telecommunications would therefore respond to real needs in the field. This appears even more important in light of changes in UNPOs mandates and against the background of the creation of a rapid deployment force in support of UN operations. However, servicing UNPOs with reliable communications means would not be an easy task, nor would it be inexpensive--especially considering the geographic spread of these operations.

      Therefore, small, mobile communications equipment, integrated in dedicated or non-dedicated telecommunications systems, could provide greater degrees of autonomy to UNPOs. In light of the number of telecommunications satellites already in orbit or under development, it appears that the UN would have to lease lines via either regional or global communications means as opposed to purchasing its own space-based segment.

(ii). Broadcasting

      The ability of being able to communicate with large masses of the local and surrounding population in UNPOs areas is an important technical aspect of such operations. At present, one common option has been to distribute written tracks with special messages via aeroplanes, helicopters, or handed out on the ground. However, these options are not always efficient because the masses of people may be so large that hand-out may become irrelevant; or there may be not enough time to prevent a crisis. In other cases, the level of illiteracy in the population may be so high that a very low percentage of the targeted people would actually be exposed to the messages.

      However, a new trend may be that of distributing small radios to the population in order to transmit messages. One example was seen in Haiti, where radios were distributed and messages broadcasted to the population in different languages. It has been argued that, in the case of the Rwanda operation, for example, access to such means would have been useful to counter "Radio Mille Collines" efforts and thus in discouraging migration. Such tools would also have been useful in the case of Somalia, where large mobs wandered around the major cities and the countryside.

      In this connection, the issue of broadcasting is quite similar to that of telecommunications. This both in terms of means available to UNPOs officials and eventual risks of equipment malfunctioning or destruction. Lack of these technical means could therefore slow the pace of operations and even hamper their implementation. The national and international media could therefore become, at present, the only means of providing such services. UN broadcasting capability coupled with telecommunications means would optimize its work and ensure a certain objectivity.

(iii). Location and Position-determination

      The importance of knowing the whereabouts of military and civil personnel is evident. The risks associated with the travelling in areas off-city limits are great, especially during movements across areas occupied by different warring factions or opposing parties. The ability to provide real-time and discrete surveillance of the movements of personnel is therefore useful and indeed essential for the well functioning of operations. Such a system provides the means both to locate personnel and to appreciate specific situations in the theatre of operations. One concrete example is the use of navigation technology in Iraq, where the GPS system is employed to know where UN aircraft and helicopters are located, including in the declared "No-Fly-Zone". Other uses of GPS in Iraq included the ability to determine the whereabouts of inspectors so as to be sure that inspection teams are exactly at the location they planned to be. UNPO implementation is increasingly using location or positioning applications. UN convoys often have to move beyond "protected" areas to deliver humanitarian aid, to establish UN posts, or to undertake related activities. The lack of knowledge of the whereabouts of convoys once they are over-the-hill, which in some cases may be coupled with a lack of communications, constitutes another serious weakness of field operations.

      Present satellite technologies could provide appropriate positioning services that, added to messaging systems, would both increase the knowledge of personnel movements and provide new technical means for evaluation of a given situation either with or without permanent contact. French soldiers in the former Yugoslavia have used satellite tracking and messaging systems between convoys and a control centre constituting a good example of the usefulness of such technical means (see Diagram II.1.G). Norwegian soldiers also have also used a similar system. However, given the diversity of existing systems, soldiers from these different contingents are not able to communicate with each other, nor are they able to follow each other's positioning when in the field. 428  A unified system available to all the different contingents in the field, or separate interacting systems, would therefore improve operating conditions. Besides, it would also ensure permanent contact with the different military detachments, which is not the case at present.

      Diagram II.1.G: Example of Satellite Applications in United Nations Peace Operations [non disponible]

(iv). Overhead Imagery

      Imagery is another area that needs attention in the present re-thinking of UNPOs. Remote sensing applications, obtained by satellite, aeroplanes, or via Unmanned Vehicles (UVs), could be used for various purposes, one example is seeing in the Olive-Branch Programme, where American U-2 imagery is provided to UNSCOM. Imagery has reportedly been very useful in providing sight diagrams which have allowed to prepare missions and draw simulations of inspections. Another example is to provide detailed maps to UN personnel in the field. This application has already been used in Cambodia during demining missions. In addition, imagery could be useful in providing new maps in areas where fighting has destroyed regular routes, thus helping to identify new unpaved roads and pathways.

      Furthermore, in cases where the morphology of the terrain would allow, imagery could also be used to ascertain the movement of troops and heavy vehicles. As a matter of fact, images are used by certain national armed forces and NATO for collecting intelligence, for example, in the former Yugoslavia. This is mostly done to monitor movement of heavy weapons, notably in preparing NATO air strikes, as well as in identifying airspace areas where peace-keeping aircraft could fly without being in the target radios of anti-aircraft batteries (see Photo II.1.17). It is unlikely, however, that this type of information is disseminated on a permanent basis. Nor does it appear that it is employed to a variety of UNPOs needed tasks, which could include providing information for the following:

  • Movements of large groups of the civil population;
  • Movements of military contingents, including emplacement of heavy weapons into and out of UN Security Council declared safe havens;
  • Identification of possible fields of landmine for mine clearing operations; and Maps of PO areas.

      Photo: II.1.17: Stereoscopic View of Surface-to-Air Battery Ranges in Sarajevo [non disponible]

CNES Distribution SPOT Image by Courtesy of SPOT IMAGE

      This lack of information to UN personnel is understandable given the traditional use of imagery for NTMs of verification and intelligence gathering for national armed forces. These are significant but not unsurmountable obstacles; although there are other reasons that influence this state of affairs. For example, it is well-known that there would be hesitation on the part of the UN to allow militaries to use imagery, telecommunications, and broadcast means. There appears even to be no great enthusiasm on their part to share telecommunication means with militaries. Use of such resources have for a long time been limited to applications and equipment of some national contingents, but in most cases have been non-existent. The UN does not have an operational information gathering service in its DPKOs, as it is the case in regular armies. Difficulties in conceiving and creating such a service are reportedly found at the political level. These obstacles are to some extent related to the clear separation between UN officials and national armed forces: this is no doubt a problem inherent to the very structure of military operations under the UN flag.

      However, there has been some evolution with respect to this type of thinking. A UN interagency collaboration on telecommunications of fifteen partners, including an organ of the DPKOs, are working to improve communications systems between UN installations worldwide and offices in the field. A call for bids has been made to develop a UN system called the "Backbone Network" (Thick Route), which will be connected to a second system referred to as the "Thin Route Network", both of which would use a space segment leased to INTELSAT. 429  The Thick Route should provide permanent voice, data, fax, and video traffics (including video conferencing), while the Thin Route would provide non-continuous services. 430  There is no a priori preference for companies either in EtSC or EmSC States, and competition indicates that it will be hard to choose the best and most economical equipment and service providers for satellite systems.

      In addition, it appears that synergies between UNPOs needs and military-grade data and services may well be possible under certain circumstances. Analysis of the possibility for access to these technologies by UN blue-helmets is under way within and outside the UN. Considering the increasing number of present and prospective high resolution commercial and military satellites, a pool of countries could provide imagery to the United Nations under a system where the supplier would be transparent to the recipient. Such an arrangement would preserve anonymity, could also avoid political disputes related to the sources of images. It could instigate EtSC States, either individually or via regional organizations such as the WEUSC, RECOSI, or COSMO, as well as services from systems owned by EmSC States, to supply data to the UN on a regular basis.

2. Economic Implications 431 

      The development of outer space capabilities has always had, from its inception, various economic implications in the military and civil sectors. In terms of manufacturing capabilities, for example, the market for the construction of hardware and software often require a large industrial basis and long-term employment possibilities. Another example is the sales of space applications where significant sums of money are exchanged in public or private contracts. Besides the direct economic implications, acquiring outer space technologies also has indirect economic impacts, notably when the access to outer space goods and services requires the development of space-related products and activities, as well as spin-offs to other non-related areas. No doubt, technology transfer is also an important issue in this debate. Increasingly, outer space has become a significant source of capital with respect to civil, military, and dual-use technology transactions.

      Another feature of outer space technologies is that developments in this field are constantly undergoing changes, and new markets often open up thus increasing economic potentials. More and more, today's space assets have special characteristics which revolutionize applications in the exploration of that environment. The notion of developing small satellites in the form of light satellites (LIGHTSATs) as distinct from large spacecraft is one example. By virtual of their physical nature and system architecture, the number of LIGHTSATs to be manufactured in the next ten years may well surpass any predictions made today. The need to develop small launchers for general purpose applications is another case in point. Notably, to provide customers with a new type of service such as "launch on quick notice" or launch on demand as it is referred to in the specialized literature, at lower cost than traditional vehicles.

      The potential sales of outer space technology applications and manufacturing capabilities are therefore multifarious and acquisition of such technologies implies large investments by States or private companies. This leads to the question of what manufacturers' expect to gain from their investments? How attractive are the different markets of outer space and related activities? Or yet, what are the potential economic benefits stimulating an ever increasing number of States to acquire outer space capabilities?

      It is the answers to these and other related questions which shade some light on the potential that economic implications of access to outer space capabilities might have on technology transfer. Be it in times of economic growth or difficulties, no State would be insensible to economic implications of market trends. Moreover, the increase of such implications become more significant as markets enlarge both in terms of demand and investment. In the final analysis, economic implications cannot be understood as a separate phenomenon, but as an integral part of (a) national development policies, (b) defense strategies, and (c) international security concerns. These priorities condition the nature and extent to which both EtSC and EmSC States interact between and among themselves in the transfer of outer space technology.

A. Space-to-Earth Applications

      Commercial benefits of developing space-to-Earth capabilities could be seeing from at least two angles: these are financial income deriving from one the provision of satellite applications and service and two form the development of spacecraft themselves. In the first case, satellite applications and services comprise satellite communications, imagery, scientific and a host of other satellites end-uses. Telecommunication and its services are by far the most profitable of all satellite applications, and there has been a continuing transfer of State sponsored applications to the commercial communications sector. Satellite imagery, however, is a growing business with innovative activities and merits special attention here, particularly due to its also growing implications for security issues.

      The new generation of satellite imagery and the technological revolution in software for the treatment of satellite data are said to create a new multibillion dollar commercial remote sensing space market. 432  For example, in 1994, estimates made for this market ranged between the figures of 3 to 5 billion US dollars a year. 433  By driving the cost of imagery down and increasing the access time to such products, the use of space technologies is being stimulated in traditional areas of use, in new fields, and by new categories of users.

      Additionally, the appearance of military-grade satellite imagery in the market and the end of the cold war has allowed cooperative programmes in the military field which aims at the exploitation of satellite data in military programmes. One example is the discussion on American military procurement of Russian data of the globe to improve U.S. military/humanitarian mission planning needs. 434  Several other opportunities like this are arising thus opening up new market demands for remote sensing technology.

      It is rather difficult to obtain a precise picture of the benefits derived from image sales worldwide due to commercial and industrial secretness. Few satellites though offer and will continue to provide this commodity in the open market. As an indication of potential costs involved in this type of transactions, the market price for satellite imagery using either panchromatic or multispectral image products is shown in Table II.2.1. To these cost could be added image interpretation expenses, which adds considerably to benefits.

      In the radar band, RADARSAT sells 10m resolution "fine" mode images ranging from CDN$ 5,400 to $7,075, depending on the application; although the price of images may decrease as the resolution increases (see Table II.2.2). Additional cost related to image sales include a variety of services such as ortho-correction which removes terrain distortions inherent in radar images, processing, programming and others (see Table II.2.3).

Table II.2.1: Present and Planned Satellite Imagery Costs
Spacecraft Resolution Image Area Image Cost
Operational spacecraft      
COSMO Kometa PAN 2m
pre 1993
after 1993
100km2 Min
PAN 10 m
< ;2500 km3
2500.15000 km2
> ;15000 km2
variable $30/km2
ERS SAR 30 m 100 km by 100 km $1550
IRS-1C,D PAN 5.8 m
MS 20 m
70 by 70 km
23 by 23 km
140 km by 140 km
70 by 70 km
MS 18/24 m
75 km by 75 km
75 km by 75 km
LANDSAT MS 30 m 180 by 170 km $4400
$400 > ; 10 years old
MS 20 m
60 by 60 km
60 by 60 km
RADARSAT 10-100 m variable $2500-4000
Planned spacecraft      
Ikonos PAN 1.0 m
MS 4.0 m
11 by 11 km $54/km2
QuickBird PAN 0.82 m
MS 3.28 m
22 by 22 km not set
Orbview PAN 1.0 m
MS 4.0 m
8 by 8 km8 by 8 km Not set

      MS= Multispectral; PAN= Panchromatic

Source: adapted from information given in "Remote Sensing From Commercial Satellites and Aircraft: A Review of Current and Future Capabilities," Michael Vannoni, in Conference on Peaceful Uses of Commercial Satellite Imagery in the Middle East, 31 August-3 September, 1998, UNIDIR, Geneva, Unpublished.

Table II.2.2: RADARSAT Product Cost (Prices In $CDN)
Processing Level
Image Plus
Map Image
Single Look
Fine 10m
(50x50 km)
5400 5750 6075 7075 5050 5400
Standard 30m
(100x100 km)
4050 4400 4725 5725 3700 4050
Wide 30m
(150x150 km)
4725 5075 5400 6400 4375 4725
ScanSAR-N 50m
(300x300 km)
5400       5050  
ScanSAR-W 100m
(500x500 km)
5400 N/A N/A N/A 5050 N/A

      = Data not availabe.

Source: Adapted from RADARSAR Price List, World Wide Products and Services, RADARSAT International, Richmond, 1995, p. 7.

Table II.2.3: RADARSAT Services Cost (Prices in $CDN)
Programming $1,625 urgent and $1,075 priority
Processing $ 2,025 near-real time and 1,350 rush
Digital to Film Transcriptions Original $350 and copies $100

Source: Adapted from RADARSAR Price List, World Wide Products and Services, RADARSAT International, Richmond, 1995, pp. 8,10.

      A more explicit examples shows the cost of satellite imagery and services for handling international security issues as quoted by RADASAT in 1996 for coverage of Bosnia, Haiti, Iraq, PDRK, and Rwanda (see Table II. 2.4). Note the annual cost for such coverage are substantial for a single client, ranging between roughly CDN$29M to 24M depending on the resolution mode. Considering that several clients may want to have access to such images, the market for image sales and services may indeed be a very profitable one in the long run and it is not surprising that technology transfer in satellite area has significant economic implications.

Table II.2.4: RADARSAT Price Samples of Area Coverage for Crisis Management Support*
Mode Ave Revist (Days) Images/ daays Thousands of SqKm/30 days Anuual Cost
Fine Standard Fine Standard Fine Standard Fine Standard
Bosnia 4 2 90 90 182.3 900 3780 3780
Haiti 6 3.5 30 34 60.8 342.9 1260 1440
Iraq 5 3 396 297 801.9 2970 16632 12474
PDRK 4.5 2.5 147 120 297 1200 6160 5040
Rwanda 7 3.5 26 34 52.1 342.9 1080 1440
        Total 1394 5755.7 28912 24174

      *Revisit and area coverage based on latitude and East-West extent; Estimates for Iraq based on simulations; Estimate for other regions based on conservative imaging opportunities assumptions.

      Note: Areas (SqKm) Bosnia=51,142, Haiti=27,406, Iraq=435,030, PDRK=120,568, Rwanda=26,344.

Source: Provided to the author by the RADARSAT/Canadian Space Agency, 1996.

      In the second case, the prospective evolution of the satellite market for the next ten years or so, as shown in Table II.2.5, indicates a sharp increase in satellite systems. Over one thousand spacecraft are expected to be launched in this period. The largest percent of the market will consist of communication satellites, with an increasing percent of imagery spacecraft. This trend should be seen in light of the increasing variety of space applications, specially those directed to the observation of the Earth or space-borne medical and other experiments. For example, trends in R&D of LIGHTSAT is expected to be more prominent on three areas of space applications: telecommunications, Earth observation, and scientific research. Traditionally, telecommunication satellites have tended to be large spacecraft placed in geostationary orbit.

Table II.2.5: Select Present and Planned Satellite Systems
ALMAZ 3 1998 397 Earth Observation
ALOS 1 2002 700 Earth Observation
ARIES       Telecommunications
ENVISAT 1 1998   Earth Observation
EOS ASTER 1 1998 705 Earth Observation
EOS AM-1 1 1998   Earth Observation
EOS MODIS 2 1998/2000 705 Earth Observation
EOS LATI I or II 1 2004 705.3 Earth Observation
CBERS 2 1998 778 Earth Observation
COSMO 7 1999/2000 500 Earth Observation
ECCO 36 1998 2000 Telecommunications
ELLIPSO       Telecommunications
GDE 1 1998    
GLOBALSTAR 56 1998 1389 Telecommunications
INMARSAT-P 10 2000 10-12,000  
IRIDIUM 66 1998 770 Telecommuniactions
IRIS 1-D 1 1999   Earth Observation
KA-STR     GEO  
KOMSAT 1 1998 600-800 Earth Observation
LANDSAT 7 1 1999 705.3 Earth Observation
ORBCOMM 26 1997 LEO Telecommunications
ORBVIEW 2 1998/2002 460 Earth Observation
ODISSEY 12 1999 10370 Telecommunications
PAS 9     GEO  
RESOURCE 21 5 1998 743.4 Earth Observation
SAC-C 1 1998 601 Earth Observation
SPACEWAY 17 2000 GEO  
SPOT 5 1 2000 832 Earth Observation
TAOS       Telecommunications
TELEDESIC 942   695-705  
Total 1195      

      LEO= Low Earth Orbit; GEO= Geostationary Orbit; ..= Data not available.

      The innovation of LIGHTSATs is that telecommunication satellites (weighing from 200 kg to 1 ton to be placed in orbits at 200, 1,400 and 36,000 km) would be placed in low Earth orbit constituting constellations of spacecraft to ensure adequate coverage. 435  Constellations of spacecraft such as the IRIDIUM or GLOBALSTAR illustrate large systems that are expected to be launched in the future. 436  TELEDESIC, with almost one thousand spacecraft, may well be an exceptional case due to its very large order of magnitude.

      The cost of satellites themselves is also expected to decline due to the large spacecraft demand, increasing miniaturised technology, and new LIGHSAT concepts. 437  The COSMO Earth observation constellation (7 spacecraft), for example, shall cost around US$ 750 M. In addition, the notion of mass production of satellites will also further affect cost considerably. Trends indicate that some types of satellites will be able to be integrated in assembly lines as automobiles and other technologically complex and voluminous commodities are manufactured now-a-days.

      Military satellites are also expected to form this growing market of LIGHTSATs, thus increasing the market for satellite manufacturing potential. Particularly, for military communications, Earth observations and signal intelligence. Synergies in military/civil satellite parts such as the bus or platform, on-board data handling, telemetry, and solid state memories should be expected. Even the need for radiation hardened components of military satellites are to some extent similar to those of civil spacecraft. 438  Such synergies in manufacturing capabilities, often referred to as technical and operational commonalities, 439  are inevitable in today's satellite business. Indeed, synergies are seeing as commercially sound approaches due to their opportunities to, inter alia, provide savings in R&D cost as well as raise 'critical work load' levels that allow for the economic viability of manufacturing programmes.

B. Earth-to-Space Applications

      A significant number of the above-mentioned spacecraft under construction or planned will be placed into orbit between the late 1990s and the first ten years of the next decade. Only a few American, Russian, Chinese, and European rockets cover most of the satellite launches for LEO and GEO altitudes. However, the competition to win bids is very stiff, especially as the commercial market for space launch increases in order to meet present and future demands. This has created trends in three different areas. One as regards access by EtSC States to satellites of competitor States and/or former military rivals. (The international market is slowly opening up among launch-faring States as the demand for more and cheaper launch vehicles increases.) A clear example is the growing number of foreign satellites, including American ones, launched by China albeit under strict restrictions. Russia is another case in point, as she was also authorized to launch American satellites and conducted a first such launch as of April 1996.

      American and European companies have been authorized to buy Russian rocket parts and vehicles to create new space launchers--which could be used for both civilian and military launch programmes. Several agreements have been reached between Western space companies and Russian counterparts leading to merges of space launcher programmes. For example, the Western companies Aerojet and Pratt & Whitney are importing Russian rocket engines to upgrade current U.S. launchers and power future ones. 440  The Boeing/NPO Yuzhoye Sea Launch venture operate Zenit launchers from an offshore oil platform (see Figure II. 2.1). 441  A first demonstration launch took place in March 1999 and the first commercial satellite went up in October of the same year. In addition, while Japanese vehicles cover only launches of Japanese spacecraft today, it is not impossible that Japanese vehicles are used for foreign launches either from Japan or elsewhere.

      A second trend is the increase in the number of available expandable launchers (see Figure II.2.2). For example, developments of rockets such as the Energiya, Ariane 5, and the H-II HOPE launchers shall constitute a new generation of launchers to complement existing vehicles scheduled to carry different parts of the international space station into low Earth orbit (LEO).


Figure II.2.1: Sea Launch Vehicle Concept

Courtesy of Boeing

      However, these are in a way predicted developments which are carried-out by a hand full of States. What is also important to note is that, concomitantly, another trend will occur in a third area of rocket launch as various new nations are expected to join the international commercial launch market in the foreseeable future. The innovation will be in both the variety of the status of space competence of these new launching technology possessor States and in the increase of small launchers. As shown in Diagram II.2.A, EtSC and EmSC States alike have several launchers under operation today and under R&D or planned. A double digit number of new small launchers is expected to be operational by the end of the century or the beginning of the next millennium. Russia seems to be the country with more variety in small launch vehicles. Ukraine shall introduce its Zenit-2 booster to the competition. China will continue offering its Long March vehicles for LEO launches. Europe may well complete its Franco-Italian European Small Launcher


Figure II.2.2: Select EtSC States Expandable Space Vehicle Competitors

Courtesy of ESA

      Diagram II.2.A: Select Present and Planned Launcher Systems [non disponible]

      (ESL) project that would be able to carry 200 to 800 kg satellites to LEO. 442  The American Lockheed Launch Vehicle (LLV) would also be another strong contender to win launch bids.

      Several of these new launchers derive from military technology of existing ballistic missiles or rockets under R&D. For example, the Russian Prioboy-1 and the like, the Franco-Italian ELS which shall use M5 motor technology, or the American LLV which should use an MX first stage. 443  This complementarity between military and civil vehicles greatly decreases the overall cost of space rocket programmes. By using technology, human resources and infrastructure of BM production, space launchers have a better change to compete in the commercial market. Although the reverse argument can be made:

      "...using military stages is not as easy as it would seem. Military launchers impose harsher launch loads on the satellites and may have unusual volume restrictions. They also ere normally launched with a rather smart upper stage that provided all the bussing operations for the reentry vehicles. Each of these needs to be overcome and converted to non-military use. There is also the problem of military assets being rather old, making it necessary to recore the booster if it is a solid, a very costly, and sometimes very risky, process that might make the conversion unrealistic." 444 

      This is a very important issue since, for any space-faring State, the development of LIGHTSAT also has some implications in the planing and designing of new rockets. The growing interest in the development of smaller boosters than traditional expandable ones put in the market by EtSC States. Major space-faring States should dominate submarine- and other sea-launched vehicle operations, the development of air-launched boosters to compete with the American Pegasus and the future Russian Space Clipper should. In addition, EtSC States already have several other launcher projects under R&D.

      EmSC States will probably increase the competition for the development of small launcher for LIGHTSAT with fix, and not mobile, vehicles. Indeed, continuous efforts towards the acquisition of indigenous capabilities by EmSC States will allow some countries to take part in the share the launch market before the end of the century. India has already proven its space launcher capability for low orbit satellites with various successful launches, and construction of a geostationary launcher is in progress. Although India has not officially stated that it would offer launching services in the international market, its ASLV could be a strong competitor. Israel, which has made a few successful launches with its Shavit-1, could eventually offer its planned NEXT vehicle for satellite launch competition.

      Entrance in the launch market by other EmSC States such as Brazil is expected in a more distant future, since their indigenously built SLV will probably have to go through a period of technology validation after the usual test phase. Yet, in the case of Brazil, foreign cooperation could well speed up the pace of its development. An additional advantage of this launcher is that it will operate near the equador. Operating near the equator offers more mass to orbit for the same size booster than other locations offer for launching satellites to certain orbits, which in turn decreases the cost of launch operations thus making this future vehicle a more competitive option for launches into a low inclination orbit. However, launching a satellite from a site near the equator could also be a disadvantage if the orbit intended is near polar, which indicates that this type of vehicle would be less competitive for such activities.

      Launch cost is an important aspect of the space technology business. It is difficult to ascertain what constitutes the true cost of a commercial asset. 445  In many cases, it is known that States underwrite a part of the cost of a space asset. For example, most of the cost to operate Cape Canaveral are paid for by the US Government and not passed on to commercial users. This may also be the case in other areas of space launch activities, for instance, in R&D of new assets, ground support equipment and manning, safety and weather support, and etc. Hence, the true cost to "go to space" may be in some cases, impossible to assess. However, Table II.2.6 shows examples of space launch vehicle costs for different satellite weight in practice by some companies in the international market. Note that event small satellites would constitute a significant market when considered the need to often launch various spacecraft. In concrete terms, for instance, different experts expect that there is a growing market for the Taurus-2 vehicle ranging from 18 to 20 M US dollars per launch. In other examples, NASDA launches cost about US$ 202 for each H-II, but the agency is reportedly making efforts to drop the unit launch cost of this vehicle to US$ 149 M, and plans to develop a new version of the H-II (H-IID), which should cut the unit cost of launches to about US$90 M. 446 

Table II.2.6: Example of Launch Vehicle Cost*
Launch Vehicle Weight (kg) Cost (M US $) Cost/kg (T US $)
Pegasus 100 14 14
Athena 350 19 54
Taurus 600 30 50
Rockot 850 13 15
Athena 1000 27 27
M-V 1200 12 30
CZ-2D 1400 20 14
Delta-II 1800 49 27
CZ-4 2650 30 11
CZ-4 2800 28 10

      *: Launch vehicle companies have not confirmed these costs.

      The cost for a smaller launcher, such as the American Pegasus, is quoted as being US$ 14M carrying a 115kg spacecraft, although other launchers could be as low as 5M. Added to these figures are launcher insurance cost which, depending on the launcher, could be in the order of a few millions of U.S. dollars. As far as future small launchers are concerned, cost are expected to be considerably less than traditional fix-launch vehicles. For example, the cost of the Franco-Italian ELS has reportedly been announced as 20 M$ per launch.

      Besides rocket launches, the markets for launching site services in the form of Space Ports, satellite and launcher insurance, Earth-based tracking antennae manufacture and operation are also opening. New access to launch sites in Argentina, Brazil, India, and other EmSC States could provide for the launching of other States' space vehicles, thus increasing the number of potential satellite launching sites with new launcher configurations and tracking technologies. It is difficult to quantify the size of these markets, but the number of satellites planned, the time frame for their development and launch, as well as the many co-operation programmes under discussion indicate that the market shall be substantial and quite innovative in the future.

      In sum, the total amount of expected and planned satellite production, launches, tracking, services and other related activities constitute a very large investment area and profitable market today, and certainly also for many years to come. In addition, it also constitutes an area of various technology investment which has spin-offs into other development sectors of the economy and human resources. Consequently, access to dual-use outer space technologies also contributes to the development of the industrial complexes of States undergoing work in this area, as well as it has helped to amplify commercial relations both within national boundaries and between States. Without any doubt, there is a real need to identify common grounds between international security and development. Technology transfer could take place in an environment amenable to create and maintain peace and security and not to threaten them. This would allow an opportunity for enhancing the tools of development for both EtSC States and other countries also seeking to explore the benefits of outer space technologies.

Part III
Technology Transfer and Control Regimes:
The Limits of the Possible

      Central to the present thesis is a discussion on existing and prospective technology control regimes which have an impact on the development of outer space activities. These control regimes comprise both national laws and multilateral arrangements among States. Two categories of States could be identified in respect to the issue of national laws which have a bearing on dual-use outer space issues. On the one hand, there are few States that have created controls systems through specific regulations and laws. In general, these States have very restrictive national legal systems which are linked to a host of other issues where arms and technology transfers are often used as an instrument of their foreign policy. On the other hand, another category of States, particularly developing countries, do not have specific laws on arms or technology transfer, and much of the control exercised on the transfer of technology has traditionally been placed under the authority of the armed forces.

      On the international level, there exists no comprehensive agreement that regulates technology transfer of dual-use outer space products, activities, or services. There are, however, selective control regimes agreed by groups of countries who wish to control both military proper and dual-use technologies both related to the production of weapons of mass destruction in specific and their delivery vehicles in general.

      Therefore, the issue of control regimes related to technology outer space transfer should be addressed from at least two different angles. One is by providing an analysis of national legislation via a general appraisal of their orientation and scope. The first objective being to ascertain the relevance of the body of law regulating dual-use technology related to outer space both for supplier and recipient States. Another objective is to appraise how similar national laws of one country are to those of other countries, as well as to international law in general. A third objective is to analyze whether national laws are constraints to or an aid for technology transfers. This comparative analysis should be useful in understanding the implications single and collective national control mechanisms have both to technology development and international security at large.

      The second approach is to describe existing multilateral arrangements devoted to controlling the spread of technologies and which have a bearing on outer space issues. The objective of this discussion being twofold. One is to appraise what arrangements cover technology transfer in this field, what type of controls exist on space programmes and other activities, and finally what impact they have had over the years on technology transfers. The second objective is to understand what future these control regimes are expected to have, their potential future scope and impact on international security and development issues, specially in light of an ever changing security environment.

1. Selective Control Regimes

A. National Legislation: Orientation and Scope

      Several countries have adopted different national legislation and policies designed to constrain the spread of dual-use technologies and weapons' payloads which could be used for mass destruction. These legislation include the adoption of stringent rules controlling the sales of goods, technologies and services related to nuclear, chemical, and biological materials, as well as their means of delivery. In the case of outer space, for example, legislations are fundamentally linked to the right or denial to access technologies which could be used to develop, for instance, ballistic missiles. Among other reasons, because it is difficult to make a clear distinction between civil and military end-uses of transferred technologies. Accordingly, these same States contend that any other new State acquiring ballistic missiles is to be considered as a '... proliferate State,' and should therefore be subject to technology control regimes and, in some cases, even sanctions.

      This situation fuelled an on-going divide between suppliers and recipients of outer space technologies. Particularly since there are States that have the legitimate right to access outer space technologies to benefit from outer space activities as any other State. In addition, these States also stand for the right to access and/or develop dual-use technologies and ballistic missiles proper, if only as a matter of principle, but certainly also because they believe that they should not be stoped from possessing dual-use technologies and ballistic missiles for the defence of their territory and that of their allies.

      In the background of these arguments is the fact that few States have national legislation directly related to the sale of dual-use technologies involving ballistic missiles, space vehicles, satellites, and tracking systems. As a result, in most cases, the transfer of such technologies are covered in national export regulations of war materials in general and key weapons precursor materials in specific. In this connection, the argument is often made in international debates that initiatives to control technologies on the national level emphasize more the military than the civil aspects of dual-use potentials. It is also believed that their implementation have been, to a great extent, arbitrary, thus often causing some kind of conflict of a political/economic nature.

      Therefore, it is important to understand clearly the different arguments of these two schools of thought. Equally important is the discussion of their converging concerns. The following description of national laws and regulations will lay the basis for this analysis.

1. Established Space-Competent States

a. United States

      The United States is the country with the largest, and perhaps most comprehensive, number of national legislation among the major suppliers of outer space technologies. Its body of law covers various aspects of nonproliferation of weapons of mass destruction, their material and delivery systems. As of 1946, the American Atomic Energy Act established the basic principle of policies and laws with respect to the country's use of nuclear energy for both civil and military purposes (see Table III.1.1). 447  The Act clearly recognizes the dual use nature of atomic energy and its utility in the military field by declaring, among others, that "...the development, use, and control of atomic energy shall be directed so as to make the maximum contribution to the general welfare, subject at all times to the paramount objective of making the maximum contribution to the common defence and security..." 448  of the United States. This is further emphasized by the findings of the Act which states that "[t]he development, utilization and control of atomic energy for military and for all other purposes are vital to the common defence and security" 449  of the United States, and the authorization in the Act allowing for the conduct of experiments, research and development in military application of atomic energy. 450 

      The Atomic Act also lays the grounds for technology defusion policies by providing for a programme for government control of the possession, use and production of atomic energy and special nuclear material, be they owned by the Government or third parties. In addition, it also sets the boundaries of technology defusion in international co-operation to the limits that "...considerations of the common defence and security will permit". 451  This policy is further detailed in the Act which, for example, limits foreign distribution of "...any plutonium containing 80 per centrum or more by weight of plutonium-238 ... if ... such distribution would be inimical to the common defence and security" 452  of the country. The Act further establishes that, unless authorized by special arrangements, "...no person may transfer or receive in interstate commerce, transfer, deliver, acquire, own, possess, receive possession of or title to, or import into or export from the United States any special nuclear materials". 453  It was also established to be unlawful under this Act "...for any person to directly or indirectly engage in the production of any special material outside of the United States". 454  Exceptions are however possible, but special authorization by the Secretary of Energy, with the concurrence of the Department of State (DoS) and consultations with the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (ACDA), 455  the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), and the Departments of Commerce (DoC) and Defence (DoD).

      No export of source material, nuclear material, production or utilization facilities, and any sensitive nuclear technology to non-nuclear weapon States can be made unless International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards are maintained with respect to all peaceful activities in a prospective recipient country at time of export. 456  In addition, the Executive Branch is requested to achieve adherence to such requirements by recipient non-nuclear weapon States, and the termination of nuclear export could intervene if the President found that the recipient State has detonated a nuclear explosive device, terminated or abrogated IAEA safeguards, materially violated IAEA safeguards agreements, or engaged in nuclear-related activities with special significance for the manufacture or acquisition of nuclear explosive devices. 457  Moreover, the request for the granting or termination of an export licence is also required to go through a Congressional review procedure, which further engages the responsibility of the President in either case.

      Fifteen years after the Atomic Act was signed, the Foreign Assistance Act (1961) was passed largely based on the Cold War rationale of containment of communism. The Act has provided the legal framework to allow American assistance, in particular to Pakistan against aggression by a communist or communist-dominated State. The act is also described as a legal instrument which helped American policy in dealing with security concerns of the Soviet presence in Afghanistan. 458  The Act, however, prohibits any assistance, sales or transfer of any military equipment or technology before the President certifies in writing to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations that (a) Pakistan does not possesses nuclear explosive devices and (b), that the proposed American programme "... will reduce significantly the risk that Pakistan will possess a nuclear explosive device". 459 

      Such a clause puts considerable pressure on the American administration to monitor Pakistani activity in this area and American policy has been involved in some controversial situations: for example, the delivery of American made F-16 aircraft faced political obstacles. 460  In this specific case, Pakistan had reportedly already payed for an order of this type of military aircraft, but the American Government, prohibited by the so called Pressler Amendment, was not in the position to allow for the delivery of the aircraft pending the certification by the President that Pakistan was not developing a nuclear device. In view of resolving this predicament, the United States made two proposals to Pakistan. One being to agree on a "verification cap" which would cover the development of fissile material, and the other was to embark on "...discussions leading to the goal of reducing the threat of nuclear weapons". 461  On May 1998, the American administration was seeking ways to pay back Pakistan as one of the measures aimed at convincing the Pakistani administration not to explode a nuclear device as a reaction to the five Indian nuclear explosions which were made in the first half of May 1998. As events showed, the United Stated was not successful in convincing Pakistan, which conducted its own series of nuclear tests in the course of the same month.

      American law is also very explicit in making linkages between non-proliferation regimes and institutions that are not primarily related to security issues. For instance, on the national level, The Secretary of State is requested to report certain nuclear related activities of other countries to the appropriate committees of Congress and to the Board of Directors of the Export-Import Bank. 462  Reports should include, in particular, any material violation, abrogation, or termination of IAEA safeguards, as well as any such occurrence with respect to an agreement entered with the United States, including any guarantee or understanding contracted in that connection. Moreover, any detonation of a nuclear explosive device by countries not part of the NPT is also to be reported. The law also determines that ".. the Board shall not give approval to guarantee, insure, or extend credit, or participate in the extension of credit in support of United States export to such country". 463 

      On the international level, the 1977 public law on the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development establishes that the Secretary of the Treasure shall instruct each executive director of six international financial institutions to consider, in carrying outer their duties, whether the recipient country has detonated a nuclear device or is not a State Party to the NPT. 464 

      Another relevant legislation with international implications is the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act of 1978. This Act is based on several principles, they include initiatives to oversee developments on the access of nuclear material worldwide and a strong commitment on the part of the United States to strengthen international safeguards and control procedures on peaceful nuclear activities. It is United States policy, as stated in the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act, to:

  1. actively pursue through international initiatives mechanisms for fuel supply assurances and the establishment of more effective international controls over the transfer and use of nuclear materials and equipment and nuclear technology for peaceful purposes in order to prevent proliferation, including the establishment of common international sanctions;
  2. take actions as are required to confirm the reliability of the United States in meeting its commitments to supply nuclear reactors and fuel to nations which adhere to effective non-proliferation policies by establishing procedures to facilitate the timely processing of requests for subsequent arrangements and export licenses;
  3. strongly encourage nations which have not ratified the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons to do so at the earliest possible date; and
  4. cooperate with foreign nations in identifying and adapting suitable technologies for energy production and, in particular, to identify alternatives options to nuclear power in aiding such nations to meet their energy needs, consistent with the economic and material resources of those nations and environmental protection. 465 

      Therefore, the purpose of the Act is also to ensure that the United States will meet "... with its commitments to supply nuclear reactors and feel to nations that adhere to effective non-proliferation policies", as well as "... providing incentive to the other nations of the world to join in such international cooperative efforts and to ratify the Treaty...". In this context, the Act directs the Secretary of Energy, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Secretary of State, and the Director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency to establish and implement procedures which will assist in the access of uranium enrichment capacity export licenses.

      With regards to international systems of safeguards, the Act determines that the United States shall continue, in co-operation with other nations, to strengthen IAEA safeguards which allows for the timely detection of possible diversion of dual-use nuclear materials. Dissemination of information is also an important element of this Act, which states that the United States shall provide the timely dissemination of information regarding such diversion; as well as implementation of international procedures for such eventualities.

      It is important to note that this Act also directs the United States to seek to negotiate with other nations and groups of nations to:

  1. adopt general principles and procedures, including common international sanctions, to be followed in the event that a nation violates any material obligation with respect to peaceful use of nuclear materials and equipment or nuclear technology, or in the event that any nation violates the principles of the Treaty, including the detonation by a non-nuclear-weapon state of a nuclear device; and
  2. establish international procedures to be followed in the event of diversion, theft, or sabotage of nuclear materials or sabotage of nuclear facilities, and for recovering materials that have been lost or stolen, or obtained or used by a nation or by any person or group in contravention of the principles of the Treaty." 466 

      Furthermore, the Act stipulates that the President shall review and make a report to Congress every year on activities of the Government and agencies relating to preventing proliferation. These reports cover all requirements imposed on the Government and related agencies involved in nuclear issues. Additionally, reports should include views and recommendations on United States policies and actions concerning its prevention of proliferation.

      Of relevance to this discussion is also the 1979 Export Administration Act on dual use goods, although it is no longer in force. Nonetheless, part of the rationale that was inscribed in this 1979 Act is also present in the 1980 Export of Nuclear Material legislation related to low-enriched uranium. This legislation waves limits on the transfer or export of such material to nations that are party to the NPT Treaty. 467  Here emphasis is clearly placed on a policy aimed at providing carrots rather than sticks: those States that prove not to act in the direction of accessing nuclear material for military purposes should be rewarded.

      Bilateral agreements have also been arranged between the United States and other countries in the nuclear field. For example, in 1985, the United States Congress passed an Agreement for Nuclear Cooperation Between the United States and China concerning peaceful uses of nuclear energy, but for which entry into force was conditional to, inter alia, provision by China of "... additional information of its nuclear proliferation policies and that, based on this and all other information available to the United States Government, the Peoples' Republic of China is not in violation of paragraph (2) of section 123 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954'. 468 

      As in the case of other multilateral legislation, this law also conditions cooperation to actions on the part of American counterparts. This particular legislation calls for a report to be presented by the President of the United States to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate, detailing the history and current Chinese developments in nonproliferation policies and practices. Here, as elsewhere, providing carrots depends on announced intentions, political engagement, and concrete actions on the part of other countries.

      Another country-specific policy was pursued in the American Foreign Assistance Act (Section 620E(e)) with respect to Pakistan. The so called 1985 Pressler Amendment mentioned above which states that "'no military equipment or technology may be sold or transferred to Pakistan', under any law unless the President certifies that Pakistan does not have a nuclear explosive device". 469  The basic rationale of this law was argued to be that of inhibiting Pakistan's desire to access nuclear weapons capability, since the US would block military sales to that country if it developed such capability. In contrast, should Pakistan be able to prove that it was not pursuing the nuclear option, military sales would be permitted thus allowing the country to ensure its security by conventional weapons means.

      From its coming into force until 1989, the President was able to certify that Pakistan did not possess a nuclear weapon. However, in 1990, the American Administration and intelligence were said to have found that Pakistan possessed nuclear weapon devices. 470  Therefore, for the first time the President was unable to make the certification required by law (for fiscal year 1991) and sanctions were applied against Pakistan.

      While the Pressler Amendment fit the overall American non-proliferation policy towards Asia, its interpretation became a source of problem in the early 1990s when the Administration considered to allow commercial arms sales to Pakistan. Its view was that such sales were not improving Pakistan's technological capability since no new technology, which was not in the Pakistani inventory prior to 1 October 1990, was to be sent to that country. 471  For some lawmakers and other experts, this action meant that the Pressler Amendment was interpreted as essentially covering government-to-government sales and not commercial deals. This view triggered a number of reactions against the Administration's interpretation of the law which, for the drafters of the bill, was not a loophole in the document but an "...improper end run around our legislative intent". 472 

      Nevertheless, alleged Chinese shipments of M-11 missiles and their components, as well as the transfer of such technology, to Pakistan in 1992 appeared in the literature as of mid-1993. 473  Sanctions against entities both in China and Pakistan were not excluded during the inquire of the alleged shipments, but were confirmed later. 474  The imposed sanctions consisted of '...a two-year ban on U.S. government contracts with and U.S. licensed exports to Pakistan's Ministry of Defence, China's Ministry of Aerospace Industry (which includes the Precision machinery Import-Export Corporation), and China's Ministry of Defence'. 475 

      Other country-specific policy that could be mentioned here are prohibitions in the Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs Appropriations Act of 1991 (section 586G), which covers "'any sales with Iraq under the Arms Export Control Act'" 476  In other cases (section 620x of the same Act), even a NATO member State--Turkey--and therefore American ally is subject to restrictions on transactions "...until certain certifications relating to Cyprus were made". 477 

      American legislation continued to evolve in the early 1990s, when the first Clinton Administrations considered new legislation in 1993 to prohibit the aid to all non-nuclear weapon States with enrichment or reprocessing facilities that could be used to produce weapons-grade materials. A new law should therefore replace the 1985 Pressler Amendment. Therefore, the American President announced that he had made non-proliferation one of the nation's highest priorities. The United States would "...seek to build a world of increasing pressures for nonproliferation, but increasingly open trade and technology for those states that live by accepted international rules." 478  American non-proliferation policy would, therefore, be more expedient on:

  1. Controlling the materials for nuclear weapons by pressing for an international agreement that bans the production of plutonium and highly enriched uranium for weapons purpose;
  2. Maintain a test ban moratorium while negotiating a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty;
  3. Call upon the US legislative Branch and other countries to ratify the Chemical Weapons Convention;
  4. Pursue discussions on the international level in view of strengthening the Biological Weapons Convention by negotiating a verification agreement to this instrument.

      This type of initiative demonstrated the perceived need to adapt American policy to the changing international security environment. Such imperative was clearly acknowledged in an announcement issued by the White House stating that:

      As global technology advances, export controls must be updated, in order to remain focussed on those items that still make a difference to programs of proliferation concern. To promote U.S. economic growth, democratization aborad and international stability, we actively seek expanded trade and technology exchanges with nations, including former adversaries, that abide by global nonproliferation norms.

      we will liberalize licensing requirements on the export of nearly all civilian telecommunications equipment and computers that operate up top 1000 MTPOS (million theoretical operations per second) to civil end-users in all current COCOM-controlled countries expect North Korea.

      This action is consistent with our national security requirements, because we are retaining individual licensing requirements for high-end computers and for transfers to military end-users. We are not changing our nonproliferation controls, which require a licence for a any export that would contribute to a program of proliferation concern 479 

      This statement shows that the first Clinton administration had realized that the pressure on economic and security imperatives made on the export of certain controlled items which, given the advance of technology worldwide, put American competition on an unequal footing vis-à-vis foreign suppliers. Such a rationale also provided the basis for the following statement by the President:

      We will also reform our own system of export controls in the United States to reflect the realities of the postCold War world, where we seek to enlist the support of our former adversaries in the battle against proliferation. At the same time that we stop deadly technologies from falling into the wrong hands, we will work with our partners to remove outdated controls that unfairly burden legitimate commerce and unduly restrain growth and opportunity all over the world. 480 

      By 1994, a new legal instrument was passed: the National Defence Authorization Act. This Act provides, inter alia, for a framework for cooperative threat reduction with States of the former Soviet Union. The "Cooperative Threat Reduction Act of 1993', as it is also referred, is based on findings of the United States Congress which are aimed to:

      1. Facilitate, on a priority basis, the transportation, storage, safeguarding, and elimination of nuclear and other weapons of the independent states of the former Soviet Union, including--

  1. the safe and secure storage of fissile materials derived from the elimination of nuclear weapons;
  2. the dismantlement of (i) intercontinental ballistic missiles and launchers for such missiles, (ii) submarine-launched ballistic missiles and launchers for such missiles, and (iii) heavy bombers; and
  3. the elimination of chemical, biological and other weapons capabilities. 481 

      Besides covering the prevention of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their components, the Act also addresses what is referred to as destabilizing conventional weapons of the independent states of the former Soviet Union. 482  Central to concerns in this Act is the need to establish verifiable safeguards against the proliferation of such weapons and components. This concern is extended to the so called "brain drain" issue, since the Act also addresses the prevention of diversion of weapons-related scientific expertise of the independent states of the former Soviet Union to terrorist groups or third countries. 483 

      Another important issue covered by this Act is the support for the conversion of the arms industry. The Act contains references to "...(A) the demilitarization of the defense-related industry and equipment of the independent states of the former Soviet Union, and (B) the conversion of such industry and equipment to civilian purposes and uses". 484  Support to demilitarization is accompanied by a set of tightly controlled possibilities of the development of programmes which could facilitate the elimination, and the safe and secure transportation and storage, of nuclear, chemical, and other weapons and their delivery vehicles, including fissile materials derived from the elimination of nuclear weapons. This efforts are announced as additional to support that could be obtained via the 1991 Soviet Nuclear Threat Reduction Act discussed above.

      In addition to the support for demilitarization, the 1994 National Defence Authorization Act also notes an expansion of military-to-military and defence contacts between the above mentioned parties. All of this is nevertheless tied-up to actions of the United States in the verification of any weapons destruction carried out under coverage of this Act and the Former Soviet Union Demilitarization Act of 1992.

      In keeping abreast with developments in the prevention and control of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the arms control section of the Act calls on the President of the United States to:

      conduct a study of (1) the factors that contribute to the proliferation of strategic and advanced conventional military weapons and related equipment and technologies, and (2) the policy options that are available to the United States to inhibit such proliferation." 485 

      The scope of this study is rather large. It asks the President to:

  1. Identify those factors contributing to global weapons proliferation which can be most effectively regulated.
  2. Identify and assess policy approaches available to the United States to discourage the transfer of strategic and advanced conventional military weapons and related equipment and technology.
  3. Assess the effectiveness of current multilateral efforts to control the transfer of such military weapons and equipment and such technology.
  4. Identify and examine methods by which the United States could reinforce these multilateral efforts to discourage the transfer of such weapons and equipment and such technology, including placing conditions on assistance provided by the United States to other nations.
  5. Identify the circumstances under which United States national security interests might best be served by a transfer of conventional military weapons and related equipment and technology, and specifically assess whether such circumstances exist when such a transfer is made to an allied country which, with the United States, has mutual national security interests to be served by such a transfer.
  6. Assess the effect on the United States economy and the national technology and industrial base (as defined by section 2491(1) of title 10, United States Code) which might result from potential changes in United States policy controlling the transfer of such military weapons and related equipment and the technology. 486 

      Concomitantly, the 1994 Act is also explicit in relation to United States counterproliferation policy, which aims at the enhancement of United States military capabilities to deter and respond to terrorism, theft, and proliferation involving weapons of mass destruction. Added to that capability is the option of international cooperation and programmes which may otherwise contribute "...to Department of Defence capabilities to deter, identify, monitor, and respond to such terrorism, theft, and proliferation involving weapons of mass destruction". 487 

      It is also important to note that this Act reflects the view of the Congress of the United States regarding the country's capabilities to prevent and counter weapons proliferation, where it views that "...the United States should have the ability to counter effectively potential threats to United States interests that arise from the proliferation of such weapons". 488  In particular, considering capabilities of the Department of Defence, the Department of State, the Department of Energy, the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, and the intelligence community. These government institutions are expected to be prepared to undertake both passive and active initiatives, which vary from the detection and monitoring of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to direct and discrete counterproliferation actions that require use of force, as well as the "...development and deployment of active military countermeasures and protective measures against threats resulting from arms proliferation, including defenses against ballistic missile attacks". 489 

      A new interdepartment mission coined Counter-Proliferation Initiative (CPI) was created involving the Department of Defence and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). CPI is structured around the strengthening of 5 core policy issues:

  1. Multilateral regimes and norms;
  2. Export controls and interdiction;
  3. Economic, political and security incentives and disincentives;
  4. Key regional strategies; and
  5. Counterproliferation.

      CPI was conceived with a broad action-oriented approach with initiatives ranging from the prevention /reversal of the proliferation of WMD and missiles to the protection of American forces. While the strengthening of multilateral and regional agreements require for active and innovative diplomatic initiatives, protection of American interests is largely based on the acquisition of what is referred to as 'special counter-proliferation technologies and equipment'. 490  This should include, among others, special (a) munitions e.g., to destroy or degrade hardened targets and (b) sensors to detect the presence of chemical and biological weapons. In this context, military intelligence capabilities are given an increasingly important role. In another area, however, CPI is integrated with export control policies.

      All of these argument have led high level Pentagan officials to state that CPI has provided a new mission for DoD. Besides, CPI policies have also been directed at, among others, an integration of commercial space nonproliferation policy and the strengthening of nonproliferation efforts through the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). 491  At the same time, CPI recognizes that the spread of technology cannot be countered by technology denial alone. 492 

      A Joint Committee for Review of Proliferation Programmes of the United States is chaired by the Secretary of Defence, who submits a report to the Congress every year. 493  The Committee's duties are, inter alia, to identify and review of existing and proposed capabilities and technologies for support of nonproliferation policy with regard to intelligence, battlefield surveillance, passive defences, active defences, counterforce capabilities, inspection support, and support of export control programmes. It is also important to note that couterproliferation capabilities are not excluded from the Committee's review mandate, including "...all directed energy and laser programmes for detecting, characterizing, or interdicting weapons of mass destruction, their delivery platforms, or other orbiting platforms". 494 

      This Act of law also lays down a comprehensive nuclear nonproliferation policy aimed at ending the further spread of nuclear weapons capability. Both in objectives and scope, American policy goes further then only attempting to curb proliferation. It also states that the United States should "...roll back nuclear proliferation where it has occurred, and prevent the use of nuclear weapons anywhere in the world...". 495  As in the case of other American laws, the implementation of this policy is also based on a combination of carrots and sticks approaches.

      The carrots approach is rather co-operative in nature: for example, the policy is aimed at the encouragement of the participation and implementation of all the republics of the former Soviet Union in pending nuclear arms control, disarmament, and multilateral agreements, including the acceptance of IAEA safeguards on all their nuclear facilities. For instance, the possibility to provide United States funds for the purpose of assisting the Ministry of Atomic Energy of Russia to construct a storage facility for surplus plutonium from dismantled weapons.

      The sticks approach is more complex and designed to strengthen nuclear export controls in the United States and other nuclear supplier nations, while at the same time imposing "...sanctions on individuals, companies, and countries which contribute to nuclear proliferation". 496  This approach is emphasized by a policy aimed at the:

      Reduction in incentives for countries to pursue the acquisition of nuclear weapons by seeking to reduce regional tensions and to strengthen regional security agreements, and encourage the United Nations Security Council to increase its role in enforcing international nuclear nonproliferation agreements. 497 

      This type of policy explains United States reaction to the Peoples Democratic Republic of Korea (PDRK) relation to the NPT. Besides urging the American President, United States Allies and the United Nations Security Council to continue pressure on PDRK to adhere to the NPT and provide access to the IAEA, the United States Congress also urged:

      that no trade, financial, or other economic benefits be provided to North Korea [PDRK] by the United States or United States allies until North Korea [PDRK] has (A) provided full access to the International Atomic Energy Agency, (B) satisfactorily explained any discrepancies in its declarations of bomb-grade material, and (C) fully demonstrated that it does not have or seek a nuclear weapons capability. 498 

      Similar approaches are also applied in the case of other technologies and equipment, as it is evident with respect to the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). American policy on this matter follows the guidelines established in the 1987 MTCR arrangement, which treats "...the sale or transfer of space launch vehicle technology as restrictively as the sale or transfer of missile technology." 499  The reasoning of such policy is based on two premises. One is that missile technology is indistinguishable from, and interchangeable with, space launch vehicle technology. And the other is that the transfers of either missile or launch vehicle technologies "...cannot be safeguarded in a manner that would provide timely warning of diversion for military purposes". 500  These positions are based on the American definition of missiles and space launchers, as well as the choice made by the American Administration for the strict interpretation of the MTCR. 501 

      In this context, the argument is made that "...there is strong evidence that emerging national space launch programs in the Third World are not economically viable." Therefore, the need arises for the United States to dissuade other countries, including MTCR adherents and those countries who have agreed to abide by MTCR guidelines, from pursuing space launch vehicle programs, as well as from providing assistance to emerging national space launch programs in the Third World. In addition, American policy also offers to cooperate with these said countries in other areas of space science and technology. This is a compensatory measure which can have considerable weight in a strategy of persuasion.

      The 1994 Foreign Relations Authorization Act is another relevant legislation in the context of national control regimes. It contains, inter alia, the Arms Control and Nonproliferation Act and the Nuclear Proliferation Prevention Act. In the first case, the Act strengthen ACDA and improves congressional oversight of the arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament activities. It provides ACDA with the mandate to prepare and manage the countries participation in international negotiations and implementation fora in the arms control and disarmament field. More specifically, it provides the legal basis for ACDA to conduct, support, and coordinate research for arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament policy formulation, including the dissemination and coordination of public information and reports to Congress concerning these matters. In particular, with respect to the verification and compliance of arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament agreements.

      ACDA is also entrusted with responsibilities related to the Arms Export Control Act, where decisions on issuing export licenses under shall be made in coordination with its Director. Here ACDA is at the position to present its:

...assessment as to whether the export of an article would contribute to an arms race, aid in the development of weapons of mass destruction, support international terrorism, increase the possibility of outbreak or escalation of conflict, or prejudice the development of bilateral or multilateral arms control or nonproliferation agreements or other arrangements. The Director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency is authorized, whenever the Director determines that the issuance of an export license under this section would be detrimental to the national security of the United States, to recommend to the President that such export license be disapproved. 502 

      Oversighting other countries military activities is an important part of this Act. Besides the statutory mandate to public annual reports on military expenditures and arms transfers worldwide, the Nuclear Proliferation Prevention Act of 1994 also contains a number of requests for reports to Congress on detailed descriptions of the implementation of nuclear and nuclear-related dual-use export controls. This reports should note export approvals, sanction, and other measures accompanying any application.

      In addition, this Act also establishes sanctions on persons engaged in activities related to nuclear proliferation. It determines that:

...person has materially and with requisite knowledge contributed, through the export from the United States or any other country of any goods or technology (as defined in section 830(2)), to the efforts by any individual, group, or non-nuclear-weapon state to acquire unsafeguarded special nuclear material or to use, develop, produce, stockpile, or otherwise acquire any nuclear explosive device. 503 

      Exports prohibitions entail denial of sales or leases to any country that is determined to be in material breach of its international treaties obligations to the United States concerning the nonproliferation of nuclear explosive devices and unsafeguarded special nuclear material, including all activities that willfully aid or abet the proliferation of nuclear explosive devices to individuals or groups or aid or abet an individual or groups in acquiring unsafeguarded special nuclear material. 504  The Act also establishes that the Secretary of the Treasury shall instruct the United States executive director to each of the international financial institutions of the International Financial Institutions Act to "...use the voice and vote of the United States to oppose any use of the institution's funds to promote the acquisition of unsafeguarded special nuclear material or the development, stockpiling, or use of any nuclear explosive device by any non-nuclear-weapon state". 505  The duties of United States Executive Directors include consideration whether recipient countries are seeking to acquire unsafeguarded special nuclear material or a nuclear explosive device, or yet, whether recipient countries are not a State Party to the NPT or if they have detonated a nuclear explosive device.

      Sanctions to be imposed include bans on dealings in government finance, designation as primary dealer in United States Government debt instruments, the possibility to service as depositary for United States Government funds. In addition, restrictions on operations, directly or indirectly, to commence any line of business in the United States or to conduct business from any location in the United States under certain circumstances. As regards the imposition of sanctions on foreign nationals, the Act established that the United States is to coordinate foreign government so that specific and effective actions is taken, "...including the imposition of appropriate penalties, to terminate the involvement of the foreign person in any prohibited activity". 506 

      This Act also establishes prohibitions on nuclear enrichment transfers, the provision of military assistance, grants, education, training, credit, or guarantees, unless previous agreement had been made to place all equipment, materials, or technology under multilateral auspices and management. Additionally, the receiving country is to agree to place all equipment, material, or technology under IAEA safeguards. Further prohibitions relate to assistance to countries involved in transfer or use of nuclear explosive devices and covers:

  1. transfers to a non-nuclear-weapon state a nuclear explosive device,
  2. is a non-nuclear-weapon state and either--
    1. receives a nuclear explosive device, or
    2. detonates a nuclear explosive device,
  3. transfers to a non-nuclear-weapon state any design...

      The Act also makes other specific references to bilateral and multilateral initiatives that the United States should undertake, such as to seek to negotiate with other nations and groups of nations, including the IAEA Board of Governors and the Nuclear Suppliers Group a number of measures which halt the proliferation of nuclear weapons. This including the promotion of IAEA internal reforms.

      Last but not least, within the ambit of American non-proliferation policies, other legislation such as the Export Administration Regulation (EAR) of the DoC have established a number of rules which govern certain destinations which require a validated export license. These rules involve missile technology '...when an exporter knows that the items will be used in the design, development, production or use of missiles,' and at one time were applicable to various countries in different continents, most of which have undertaken considerable work in rocketry and other space technologies such as Brazil, China, DPRK, India, Iran, Pakistan, and South Africa. 507 

Table III.1.1: Select U.S. Nonproliferation Legislation
Legislation Year* Select Objectives
Atomic Energy Act 1946, 1954 Establishes definitions, policy principles, criteria and procedures for the development and control of atomic energy
Atomic Weapons and Special Nuclear Materials Rewards Act 1955 Provides rewards for information concerning the illegal introduction into the U.S., or the illegal manufacture or acquisition in the U.S., of special nuclear material and atomic weapons
International Atomic Energy Agency Participation Act 1957, 1958, 1980, 1965 Provides of the appointment of American representatives in the IAEA, as well as American participation in the Agency
EUROTAM Cooperation Act 1958, 1961, 1964, 1967, 1973 Provides for co-operation with the European Atomic Energy Community
Foreign Assistance Act 1961 Establishes procedures for assistance, sales or transfer of military equipment or technology
International Bank of Reconstruction and Development 1977 Provides for increased American participation in international financial institutions fostering economic development in less developed countries
Export-Import Bank Act 1945, 1977 Establishes reports nuclear safeguards violations to Congressional Committee and Board of Directors
International Emergency Economic Powers Act 1977 Grants the President the authority to deal with unusual and extraordinary threat, which has its source in whole or substantial part outside the United States, to the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States.
Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act 1977, 1988 Provides for more efficiency and effective control over the proliferation of nuclear explosive capability
Export Administration Act 1979 Provided authority to regulate exports, to improve the efficiency of export regulations, and to minimize interference with the ability to engage in commerce
Export of Nuclear Material 1980 Permits the supply of additional low enriched uranium fuel under international agreements for cooperation in the civil uses of nuclear energy and for other purposes
Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material Implementation Act 1982 Establishes procedures for the implementation of the protection
Nuclear Waste Policy Act 1982 Provides for the development of repositories for the disposal of high-level radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel
Agreement for Nuclear Co-operation between the United Sates and China 1985 Regulates the approval and implementation of the agreement for cooperation in the nuclear field between the United States and China
Foreign Assistance Act (Section 620E(e)), Pressler Amendment 1985 Prohibits the sale or transfer of military equipment or technology to Pakistan, unless the President certifies that Pakistan does not have a nuclear explosive device
Anti-Terrorism Act 1987 Authorized appropriations for fiscal years 1988 and 1989 related to anti-terrorism activities
Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs Appropriations Act of 1991 (section 586G) 1991 Prohibits any sales with Iraq under the Arms Export Control Act
Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs Appropriations Act of 1991 (section 620x) 1991 Restricts transactions to Turkey until certain certifications relating to Cyprus are made
Land Remote Sensing Policy Act 1992 Extends limitations on the export of military and dual-use technologies to include commercial imaging technology
National Defence Authorization Act 1994 Provides for, inter alia, a framework for cooperative threat reduction with States of the former Soviet Union, programmes in support the prevention and control of proliferation of weapons of mas destruction, and international non-proliferation initiatives
Foreign Access to Remote Sensing Space Capabilities
Presidential Directive-23
1994 Establishes policy goals and scope of regulations on (a) licencing and operation of private remote sensing systems, (b) transfer of advanced remote sensing capabilities, (c) transfer of sensitive technology, and (d) government-to-government intelligence and defence partnerships
Foreign Relations Authorization Act 1994 Strengthens the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency and congressional oversight of the arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament activities as well as it covers nuclear proliferation prevention initiatives

      *= First year indicates when the law was passed and other years indicate major amendments.

Source: Adapted from information given in Nuclear Proliferation Factbook, Committee on Governmental Affairs, United States Senate, Congressional research Service, Library of Congress, 103d Congress, 2d Session, S. Prt. 103-111, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C., 1995; "Foreign Access to Remote Sensing Space Capabilities," Office of the Press Secretary, The White House, Fact Sheet, Washington, D.C., 10 March 1994; and others.

      With the background of these national legislation in mind, it is not difficult to understand why the United States has played such an active role in the PDRK/IAEA nuclear issues. Nor is it difficult to understand the American announcement of sections against India following its nuclear test in the first half of 1998. First, and unlike in other countries, it the statutory duty of the President of the United States to act in view of either a violation of national or international law, or technical, commercial and other developments which may lead to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and its delivery system. Second, as the U.S. tried to find other alternatives to nuclear sources in the PDRK/IAEA case, it is also expected that the U.S. will have to adopt a more active attitude in view of helping to redress the nuclear option issue in the Indian sub-continent.

      In this connection, the implementation of American regulations shall involve various intergovernmental agencies and departments--the DoC, DoS, Customs Service, DoD, Congress, and the Executive Branch of Government, where American laws refer to each other thus creating a network of procedures which make unwanted access to export licencing very difficult.

b. Russian Federation and other Former Soviet Republics

      One of the fundamental changes brought about to East/West relations by the end of the Cold War is a gradual rapprochement of views by countries in these two regions on how to cope with security and economic issues. NATO and European Union expansion are two cases in point. Another example is the adoption by soem Eastern European countries of certain laws with respect to access to dual-use material, technologies, and services, which is seen in the West as a political signal of the determination to curb weapons proliferation efforts. This is certainly the case of the Russian Federation that, along with the Ukraine, are the East European countries which most produce such dual-use goods. Therefore, since the early 1990s, Russia has undertaken concrete steps to create the legal means on the national level to implement a policy which it proclaims to pursue on the international arena.

      Three years after the dismantlement of the Soviet Union, export control was the subject of attention, which led to the announcement of a Presidential Decree on April 1992. 508  With this Decree, a commission on export controls was created with the participation of representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of External Economic Relations, the Ministry of Defence, and the Ministry of Security and External Intelligence. In addition, export control divisions were also created in most of these Ministries, which determines whether or not the most sensitive items are authorized to be exported.

      In less than one year latter, on 11 and 27 January 1993, two other decrees were passed in the Russian Federation aimed at the control of missiles and rocketry technologies exports. In essence, the decrees mandate that a list be made of these materials and technologies, and call for the establishment of an export control mechanism for these technologies by the Russian Government. The said list, entitled 'List of equipment, materials and technologies used for the creation of rocket-based weapons, the export of which is controlled and realized by means of licensing,' refers, in its Category I, I.1 Equipment, I.1.1., to 'finished rocket systems (ballistic rockets, rocket carriers and research rockets), capable of delivering a useful weight of no less than 500kg to distances of 300km or more. 509 

      Later in the same year, on 20 August 1993, President Boris Yeltsin signed the Russian Federation Space Activities Act. 510  This Act, still in force today, is unique in character since it sets the legal framework for the exploration of space and establishes a link between Russian peaceful and military space activities. For instance, besides detailing various space activities goals and tasks for peaceful purposes, the Act stipulates that space activities should also serve "...to provide the Russian Federation with defensive capability and the ability to monitor compliance with international agreements relating to arms and armed forces". 511  Among the principles governing space activities, the Act also stipulates that, in the interests of strategic and environmental security, it is prohibited to:

  • place in orbit around the Earth or by any other means deploy in space any nuclear weapon or other weapon of mass destruction;
  • test any nuclear weapon or other weapon of mass destruction in space;
  • use space objects or other items of space hardware as means of affecting the environment for military or other hostile purposes;
  • use the Moon or other celestial bodies for military purposes;
  • deliberately create an immediate threat to the safety of space activities, including [any threat] to the safety of space objects; and
  • cause pollution in space leading to undesirable changes to the natural environment, including the deliberate destruction of space objects in space. 512 

      The Act also stipulates that "...any other space activity under the jurisdiction of the Russian Federation that is prohibited by international agreements to which the Russian Federation is a party shall likewise be banned". 513  Additionally, it regulates other space activities for the defence and security of the Russian Federation, where it empowers the Ministry of Defence with the execution of the longterm programme and yearly work plans for the manufacture and use of space hardware for military purposes, although in conjunction with other Federal ministries. In particular, the Ministry of Defence is given the authority to:

  • draft longterm programmes and yearly work plans for the manufacture and use of space hardware for military purposes and, in conjunction with the Russian Space Agency, for the manufacture and use of space hardware used both for scientific or economic purposes and for the defence and security of the Russian Federation;
  • formulate and attribute State orders for work related to the manufacture and use of space hardware for military purposes and, in conjunction with the Russian Space Agency, for the manufacture and use of space hardware used both for scientific or economic purposes and for the defence and security of the Russian Federation;
  • make use of space hardware for the defence and security of the Russian Federation;
  • operate space hardware for scientific and economic purposes on a contractual basis; and
  • see to the maintenance and development of ground facilities and other items of space infrastructure, in conjunction with other Federal ministries and government departments. 514 

      The Ministry of Defence also, in conjunction with other relevant government bodies, participates in the attribution of State orders for the manufacture and use of space hardware serving the defence or security of the Russian Federation. It also helps to operate, maintain and develop, ground facilities and other items of space infrastructure, provides the regulatory and technical documentation required and participates in the certification of space hardware. Moreover, the Ministry of Defence is also entitled to mobilize any item of space infrastructure, including space hardware, as well as it is entitled to take over to the Russian Space Agency on a contractual basis, for use in space activities undertaken for scientific and economic purposes, any temporarily unused items of space infrastructure under its authority. 515 

      Other former Soviet Republics such as Belarus, Estonia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, and the Ukraine have also passed new laws related to the transfer of conventional arms and dual-use technologies. In most cases, the development of national export control laws follow two major rationales. One is the need for these countries to see COCOM and related restrictions on them removed. The other is the necessity to respond to American concerns on export controls, where the U.S. has linked cooperation on export controls with other issues such as START. While it is important to mention some of the features in their legal regimes, it is also necessary to state that not all of these countries have inherited significant production capabilities from the former Soviet Union. Hence, the transfer of material, technology, and human resources are of particular concern internationally only from two or three of these countries.

      In the case of Belarus, the recent history of export controls started with an export/import decree published on October 1991. 516  This Decree prohibited the export of goods without proper license, the application to which is to be evaluated and granted by different government bodies, among which is the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations. A second Decree was issued in August of the following year, whereby a more robust set of prohibitions was imposed. In particular, the Decree established new rules and procedures necessary to obtain export licence for:

  • military technology;
  • dual-use material;
  • nuclear material; and
  • narcotics.

      Additionally, the Decree also prohibited exports of these goods to (a) areas of military conflict and (b) any area of political instability. 517  A number of other new features were incorporated in this Decree, as for example, the requirement of:

  • re-export guaranties by importing countries; and
  • safeguards against the use of exported goods for the production of WMD.

      A subsequent 1993 Decree complemented its predecessors by extending control rules to:

  • nuclear material and nuclear-related activities and dual-use technologies;
  • chemical and their manufacturing equipment;
  • bacteriological weapons and their manufacturing material;
  • chemical and bacteriological weapons;
  • conventional weapons;
  • raw material, equipment or technology used for weapons manufacturing and military technology; and
  • dual-use equipment. 518 

      Yet the most comprehensive export law in Belarus came about one year later, in 1993. Kazakhstan also took some legal actions in the early 1990s with a Presidential Decree on February 1993. It required licencing and even quotas for imports and exports on material related to the production of weapons of mass destruction. 519  Kyrgyzstan is another former Soviet Republic that has shown much resolve in curbing assess to weapons of mass destruction and their means of production. 520  A Decree was issued on November 1992 creating the Commission on Export Controls, which grants export license and determines items to be under control. Export licences issued by the Ministry of Trade and Material Resources are determined via a number of international criteria, among which are:

  • a dual-use list;
  • a military list; and
  • a nuclear energy list. 521 

      Export control is rather sophisticated since it includes goods, technologies and services and covers weapons of mass destruction and their rocket delivery systems. Reportedly, the dual-use technology list was based on the COCOM Industrial List. Kyrgyzstan export controls also have a feature which is not very commonly seen in other countries: it is said to be developing "...an automated system for licensing which would include a data base on exports, imports, and intermediaries". 522  A more comprehensive law based on the Indian legislation has been reported to be under development.

      As regards the Ukraine, the country which most inherited from the former Soviet Union's civil and military space-related complex, new legislations on export control started to emerge on January 1993. 523  Two organs were created by a presidential edict setting both political and technical structures to cope with the issue of export controls. The first was the Commission on Export, which is a consultative organ involving sixteen ministries and agencies. This commission has a very high political profile and is chaired by the Vice-Prime Minister and has the Deputy-Minister of Foreign Affairs as the deputy chairperson. Among its task is "...to make principle decisions on export control development, and to make policy decisions on questions put to it by the parliament of the President". 524  The second organ created in 1993 was a technical expert committee which reports directly to the cabinet of ministers via the Vice-Prime Minister.

c. The European Space Agency, the European Union, and National Laws

      As a group of countries, ESA is not subject to either national laws or international agreements, although all transfers outside the territory of Member States are subject to national export control laws and regulations of the Member State concerned and the ESA Member State agreement. The transfer of information, data, or other assets developed with the cooperation of the Agency can therefore be analysed in two ways. First, in the event that a given technology to be transferred is owned by ESA, the Agency's Council, which regroups industrial partners, sets the modalities and decides whether or not the transaction can be made. The guidelines for such decision include ESA's rules and procedures establishing that any transfer shall respect, besides some requirements of industrial and commercial nature, "...the exclusively peaceful purpose of the Agency," and that "it shall be in compliance with export controls as applied by Member States..." 525  It is in this connection that, informally, Member States can communicate ESA of any national export control laws and international agreement which might be related to the technology transfer requested.

      Secondly, is in the event that a given technology is to be transferred by a contractor, and not by ESA itself. Naturally, the national law of the country the contractor belongs to is applied. Some Member States also follow restrictions of selective arrangements such as the MTCR or the Nuclear Suppliers Group. In addition, if the technology was acquired by virtue of a contract with the Agency, ESA's rules and procedures are applied as well. The contractor is also requested to keep the Agency informed of:

  • all steps to investigate such request and of the particulars of the intended transaction, including the customer, the final destination and the intended use of the subject of the transaction; and
  • whether the transfer is subject to any control approval procedures in the Member State of his jurisdiction and whether such approval has been applied for. 526 

      ESA's rules and procedures also indicate that the Agency may propose specific provisions to protect Member States' interest and its own objectives. In both cases quoted above, ESA shall notify all Member States of any proposed transfers, which in some instances shall include the Agency's own views and suggestions. Member States have six weeks to request for a delegate meeting if they judge that the proposed transfer needs to be examined; in which case, the transfer would require approval by a two-thirds majority of all Member States, or depending on the case, of the participating States. 527  An account of the transfer is made and included in the Agency's Director General Report to Council and to the Committee on transfers of inventions, technical data, and assets, thus ensuring some degree of transparency of the knowledge of requests for transfers.

      In the European Union, the debate at the European Commission on exports control has gained much momentum since 1991. 528  It is aimed at creating a joint export control system harmonizing rules and laws of all member States. The main objectives here are mainly twofold: the first is to provide a system that eliminates barriers as much as possible within the Union itself, while at the same time not creating any problems related to both commercial competitiveness between members or extra-Union export licence loopholes (for example, weakening partnership potentials within and outside Europe). The second objective is to agree on a common list of items and recipients which would be consistent with regional and international security concerns. Work on a 1992 Draft Guideline has led to consensus on:

  • The need for individual licences for arms exports for extra-Union
  • destinations;
  • The need for individual licences for dual-use goods for extra-Union
  • destinations;
  • Integrated list of goods subject to licencing;
  • List of items which will continue to be subject to national rules;
  • List of countries considered to be non-problematic; and
  • Criteria for licencing.

      Some of the main subjects of discussions include, inter alia:

  • Extending or not the scope of the guidelines to cover non-tangible technology transfers;
  • The goods to be included in an exclusion list, where intra-community control would continue to exist; and
  • The list of criteria for guiding licensing decisions.

      A number of questions still remain to be agreed upon both in principle and in practice. For example, it is still not known whether or not the same criteria would be applied for arms exports and dual-use goods and technologies. Enforcement is also an area which the debate needs to advance. Most ESA/European Union member States however have passed or are developing comprehensive laws and regulations covering the acquisition, development, and transfer of dual-use technologies and materials, which cover dual use items and/or war material. Some of these legislation are worth mentioning in this discussion since they are examples of how unequal and diverse national policies can be at the moment.


      In France, for instance, activities related to dual-use outer space technologies, equipment and software are considered under the legal regime for war material, arms, and munitions, which are governed by the 18 April 1939 law and the 16 July 1955 Decree on the export of war material. 529  It is the 20 November 1991 Arrêté and its 9 May 1997 follow-on arrêté, however, that specifically define the current list of war and related material subject to special export procedures. 530  The 1991 arrêté establishes the following six categories of war and related material for which the export of any of its items without authorization is prohibited:

  1. Arms and munitions;
  2. Missiles, rockets and space launchers;
  3. War ships and special naval equipment;
  4. Combat tanks and military land-vehicles;
  5. Air and space armaments; and
  6. Equipment and software.

      Of particular relevance to the present debate are items B, E, and F. For example, Table III.1.2 contains the items incorporated in category B, which covers missiles and rockets under the same heading. Note that the export of rockets, including sounding rockets, and space launchers are subject to authorization, but also their tools for fabrication and the testing of material, as well as software specially conceived or modified for the material addressed in this Arrêté. In some cases, the items under control are clear since the list mentions the name of the civil-use equipment or system, such as the example of sounding rockets. In other cases, however, it is more difficult to identify the items subject to control since the term used is more general in nature and relates to systems specially developed or modified for military use. The problems is that some of these systems could also be used for civil purposes, as in the case of observation satellites and cryptography technology.

      In the 1960s, observation satellites where considered to be military or spy satellites. In the 1970s and 1980s, 30 meters and then later 10 meters ground resolution satellites where considered to be spacecraft for civil and military use, because imagery from this level of ground resolution was then available in the international commercial market. In the late 1990s, when 0.82 meters ground resolution satellites are arriving in the commercial market, what was considered to be military-grade resolution is finding several civil-use applications. It becomes therefore an increasingly difficult challenge to differentiate what is an equipment developed or modified for military use.

Table III.1.2: Extract of the French Law Related to the Export of Rocket, Satellite, and Ground-based Systems
Category B: Missiles, Rockets, and Space Launchers
a) Missiles.
b) Rockets (including sounding rockets) and space launchers.
c) Reentry-vehicles specially designed for military payload.
d) Propellers for the materials in items a and b above.
e) Launching and support equipment and installations for the materials in items a and b above.
f) Parts, components and accessories specifically for materials in items a, b, c, d and e above,
including stage separation devices.
g) Structural and protection materials for materials in items a, b, c and d above.
h) Propergols and chemical products utilized in the propulsion of materials in items a and b.
i) Equipment and tools specialized for the fabrication of materials in a, b, c, d, e, f, g, and h above.
j) Equipment and tools specialized for the test of materials in a, b, c, and d above. Specialized tools
for the fabrication and test of the materials in item b above.
Category E: Air and space armaments
a) Piloted or non-piloted aircraft specially designed or modified for military uses.
b) Detection or observation satellites, their observation and photographic equipment, as well as their
ground station, designed or modified for military use or which their characteristics confer military
"When they are specially designed or modified for military use, space vehicles and other satellites,
their ground station and equipment."
c) Ground vehicles specially designed or modified for military use.
d) Motors and propulsion systems specially designed or modified for the materials in items a, b, and c
e) Parts, components, accessories, and environmental materials (including maintenance equipment)
specifically for materials in items a, b, c, and d above.
f) Specialized tools for the fabrication of the materials in items a, b, c, d, and e above.
Category F: Equipments and software
F.1. Detection, positioning, and identification equipments
) Detection systems and equipments specially designed or modified for military use.
b) Specially designed or modified systems and equipments for research, the verification, the analysis and production of information for military use.
c) Identification systems and equipments specially designed or modified for military use.
d) Positioning systems and equipments specially designed or modified for military use.
e) Parts, components, accessories, and environmental materials (including maintenance equipment) specifically for materials in items a, b, c, and d above.
f) Specialized tools for the fabrication of the materials in items a, b, and c above.
F.2. Observation and firing equipment
) Firing equipment, including fire calculators and telemeters, missile and other munitions chasing and guidance equipment.
b) Aiming equipment specially designed for the targeting of arms in category A, including sights and adjusters.
c) Photographic camera and electro-optic imaging device, including infra-red radar image sensors, specially designed or modified for military needs.
d) Periscopes and episcopes specially designed or modified for military needs.
e) Passive infra-red equipment, thermic imagery equipment, and light or image intensification
equipment specially designed or modified for military needs. Other passive infra-red equipment
and light intensification classified under 2nd category.
f) Parts, components, accessories, and environmental materials (including maintenance equipment) specifically for materials in items a, b, c, d, and e above.
f) Specialized tools for the fabrication of the materials in items a, b, c, d, and e above.
F.3. Telecommunication and data treatment equipment
) Telecommunication, telecommand, telemetry networks, systems and equipments specially designed or modified for military needs.
b) Data treatment networks, systems and equipments specially designed or modified for military needs.
c) Parts, components, accessories, and environmental materials (including maintenance equipment) specifically for materials in items a and b above.
d) Security devices of systems and equipments in items a and b above.
e) Devices to limit electromagnetic rays specially designed or modified for military needs.
f) Specialized tools for the fabrication of the materials in items a and b above.
F.4. Navigation, guidance, and piloting equipments
) Specially designed or modified equipment for navigation, guidance, and piloting of materials in categories A, B, C, D, and E above.
b) Parts, components, accessories, and environmental materials (including maintenance equipment) specifically for materials in item a above.
c) Specialized tools for the fabrication of the materials in items a and b above.
F.5. Jamming and counter-measure equipment. Cryptology means
a) Jamming and anti-jamming systems and equipments, including electronic counter-measures and counter-counter-measure devices.
b) Decoys and their launching systems.
c) Parts, components, accessories, and environmental materials (including maintenance equipment) specifically for materials in item a and b above.
d) Products, materials, absorbents, and other devices specially designed to reduced detectability, notably electromagnetic and infra-red.
e) Cryptology means: materials or software permitting the transformation, with the aid of secret conventions, of information or clear signals into non-readable information or signals for third parties; or performing the reverse operation when they are specially designed or modified to permit or facilitate the utilization or the preparation of arms.
f) Specialized tools for the fabrication and the test of the materials in items a and b above.

F.10. Software
Specially designed or modified software for the materials in the present decree.

Source: "Arrêté du 20 novembre 1991 fixant la liste des matériels de guerre et matériels assimilés soumis à une procédure spéciale d'exportation,"Journal officiel, 22 novembre 1991, Matériels de Guerre, armes et munitions, Journal officiel de la République Française, no. 1074, pp. 177-187; "Arrêté du 9 mai 1997 modifiant l'arrêté du 20 novembre 1991 fixant la liste des matériels de guerre et matériels assimilés soumis à une procédure spéciale d'exportation,"Journal officiel, 16 mai 1997, Matériels de Guerre, armes et munitions, Journal officiel de la République Française, Brochure no. 1074, supplément no.4, 16 mai 1997, pp. 2-4; Autour's translation.

      Federal Republic of Germany

      German Policy on Arms Export prohibits the export of arms to areas of tension. However, dual-use products and technology deriving from Germany have been involved in a series of events that were conducive to helping the manufacture of different types of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles. This has been acknowledged by the German Government which has undertaken actions since 1989 to strengthen its export control laws and administrative control mechanism of goods with civil and military applications. 531  The German reform led to the adoption of a new Foreign Trade and Payments Act on 14 February 1992. The legal framework for exports could be summarized as having the major following emphasis:

  • Preventive monitoring options;
  • Sanctions for illegal acts;
  • Comprehensive cataloguing of restrictions; and
  • Comprehensive cataloguing of different means of intervention in the event of suspected military use.

      Among the different new measures of the German Government is the additional licence requirements for dual-use goods. For example, the following item categories are subject to unilateral control:

  • Machine tools and other types of machinery;
  • Flat-bed trucks suitable for transporting armoured vehicles;
  • Machine units with missiles and uranium enrichment applications;
  • All the precursors of chemical warfare agents proposed by the Australia Group; and
  • Civilian systems which could be misused to manufacture chemical or biological weapons.

      Moreover, German law also stipulates that "...all goods are subject to authorization if the exporter is aware of their being used in arms production in the recipient state". 532  This action has been coupled with the decision to compile a list of countries to which the stricter controls are applied. Furthermore, controls are to be conducted on the "...work of German experts abroad on arms projects, particularly missile technology projects", for all non OECD countries.

      Nonetheless, perhaps the most stringent action adopted in the new version of German law against illicit exports of dual-use items is the granting to its main investigating authority--the Customs Criminological Institute--the right to "...encroach upon the basic right of postal and communications privacy, on the basis of a court order and under parliamentary supervision, as soon as prima facie evidence of criminal offence planning is available." 533  This action is part of what is defined as Preventive Monitoring Options which, no doubt, puts German law a step further than the usually expected conduct of lawmakers who respect basic human and democratic rights. The main reasoning of this law being that the manufacturing of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles are considered to be a much more serious threat to Germany, the society, and the human race as a whole. Therefore, individual basic rights are supposed to give way to an appropriate investigation of alleged violations of dual-use export laws.

      Germany has also placed much emphasis on the deterrent value of penalties and sanctions. For example, present law authorizes the courts to impose prison sentences of up to 15 years, with a minimum of two years of imprisonment, which also applies to German engineers working abroad in the development and manufacturing of weapons of mass destruction (nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons). In this new version of German law, violation of United Nations embargos is also considered to be criminal offence and the offender is liable to the same range of penalties as in the previous case. In addition, provision is also made to confiscate the total proceedings deriving from illegal exports. Moreover, German board members, executive managers, and partners of companies are designated as export officers and made personally responsible for the internal control of their enterprises. According to German law, these export officers must be replaced in the event of serious violation of export law.

      Administrative control mechanisms has also been subject of improvement. Often, rules change but the mechanisms to implement them do not follow the same pace of adaptation either legally or in practical terms. This has apparent been a concern as regards the strengthening of export controls in Germany. Along with improvements to the legal body of law, Germany has also considered to extend the authorities responsible for the export of controls and to introduce state-of-the-art technology to implement the new version of the law. These initiatives have led to the following results:

  • An over 400 per cent increase in the total staff of the authorities responsible for export licences;
  • An almost 300 per cent increase in the total staff of the Customs Criminological Institute; and
  • The creation of an early-warning system for passing on information intended to help industry to weed out problematic cases; including information on attempts by third countries to procure dual-use goods.

      Finland and Sweden

      Reportedly, Finland made the decision on 7 March 1991 to place the licensing of materials and technologies related to missiles under close monitoring. 534  Sweden, however, which coordinates its space activities via the Swedish National Space Board, has exercised control via procedures of export licensing requirements. 535  In principle, where end-use certificates are not officially required, they are nevertheless requested in practice. Swedish controls have been tightened in March 1994 with the introduction of a law on the export of dual-use goods, which controls not only national companies within the home territory but also abroad.


      Swiss legislation has covered the transfer, re-export, and end-use of dual-use technologies for several decades, notably in the nuclear field. More recently, however, Swiss law on dual use goods became more comprehensive: a few particular features are worth mentioning here. For example, on 13 December 1996, an act of law also addressed the control of dual-use goods and specific military goods 536  which are the objective of international non-mandatory obligations from the view point of international law--that is to say ad hoc control arrangements. 537  This federal law is only applicable in cases where the 23 December 1959 federal law on atomic energy and the 13 December 1996 legislation on war material are not applicable themselves. 538  For Swiss law, goods are defined as consisting of merchandise, technologies and software, and dual-use by goods which can be used for both military and civil purposes. 539  The law authorizes the application of control over the manufacturing, storage, the transfer and the utilization of goods, as well as the export, import, transit and activities of intermediaries. 540 

      Additional control measures are aimed at the support of other international control initiatives which commercial Swiss partners adhere to, but which are also non-mandatory obligations from the view point of international law. They consist of the obligation of declaration and the surveillance of import, export, transit of goods and activities of intermediaries. 541  In addition, permits may be refused if the envisaged activity contravenes international agreements, control measures in international selective control regimes, and other specific cases. 542  Moreover, permits may be withdrawn if the circumstances under which they have been delivered have changed, falling into any of the cases described in Article 6 as described above. Moreover, the law also stipulates specific penalties from crime, dialectal actions, contravention, company infraction, actions related to the lack of or inexact declaration of import, export, transit of goods and actions of intermediaries to the supply of false and incomplete information.. 543 

      Nonetheless, the Swiss legislation also contains clauses which allow the Government to alleviate control measures or to make exception to countries that become contracting parties to international agreements or that participate in international control measures which are non-mandatory obligations from the point of view of international law. 544 

      About half a year later--on 25 June 1997, a new ordinance came into force regulated the export, import and transit of goods used for civil and military purposes, as well as specific military goods which are the subject of non-mandatory international control measures under international law. 545  This ordinance identifies the items to be under control and also creates a clear linkage between Swiss law and selective control regimes. It includes the goods used for both civil and military purposes of the following arrangements in its Annex 2:

  • Wassenaar Arrangement;
  • Missile Technology Control Regime;
  • Nuclear Suppliers Group; and
  • Australia Group. 546 

      It also includes the military goods of the Wassenaar Arrangement Munitions' List to Annex 3 of the Ordinance. Permits can be refused if there is reason to suppose that goods to be exported will be used, inter alia, to develop, produce or employ nuclear weapons or unmanned flying objects designed to nuclear, biological and chemical engagements, or contributing to a State's conventional arsenal of which behaviour threatens regional or international security. 547  It is also important to note that it is the duty of the exporter to mention, on the accompanying documents of goods to exported, that such goods are subject to international export controls. 548  In addition, a declaration of end-use of goods to be exported is also envisaged under specific conditions.

      The list of goods used for civil and military purposes in the Swiss Jun 1997 Ordinance is of five sections (A: systems, equipment and components, B: test, control and propulsion equipment, C: material, D: software, and E: technology), which are structured within 9 categories of goods:

  1. Material, chemical products, micro-organism and toxins;
  2. Treatment of material;
  3. Electronics;
  4. Calculators;
    1. Telecommunication;
    2. Security of information;
  5. Sensors and lasers;
  6. Navigation, aircraft and air-electronics;
  7. Marine items; and
  8. Propulsion system, space vehicles and related equipment. 549 

      The law therefore covers all three areas of space applications: launcher, spacecraft, and ground equipment. For instance, while items in category 9 clearly refer to space launchers, other items such as numbers 3 and 6 cover integrated circuits and radars which could serve dual-use equipment. Other categories also contain goods that could be used for the development of the infrastructure which could be used for the manufacturing of dual-use systems or components. It is equally important to note that the technology necessary to develop, production or utilization of goods in these 9 categories under control, remain under control even when it is applicable to a good not under control. 550 


      Portugal had no legal instruments to control export of dual-use equipment, products, and technologies until a decree of law on this matter was announced in 1991. 551  The Decree has a rather large scope covering "...imports, exports, temporary exports and reexport of equipment, products or technology"; which are "...subject to licences and certificates to be issued by the Ministry of National Defence and of Trade and Tourism...". 552  In addition, an Interministerial Committee 553  was set up with the goal of, inter alia, being responsible for "...issuing opinion on the composition of the list of goods and services subject to licences and certificates...". 554 

      Some decree of verification of export procedures is required in this Decree. For example, first the export, reexport, and temporary export of equipment, goods, or technologies must have customs clearance which is subject to compulsory verification. Second, the Decree specifically creates both an International Import Certificate (IIC) and an International Export Certificate (IEC), and any application for export "...must be accompanied by the corresponding [IIC], certificate of final destination or equivalent document...". 555  The exporter is therefore obliged to supply prove that the purchased items have arrived at the declared destination: appropriate documentation endorsed by the customs authorities of the country of destination.

      The Decree is also explicit on penalties that might be applied to any person who would make untrue statement or omit any particular in the form, which is set to up to two years of imprisonment. In addition, exporting and reexporting without the IEC makes any person liable to "...punishment by imprisonment from six months to five years, unless any other legal provision provides for a heavier penalty". 556  These punishments shall also cover "...any attempt to commit the offences concerned...". 557  Finally, non-compliance of requirements related to the delivery of import and export certificates is punishable by a fine of up to 6 million escudos.

2. Emerging Space-Competent States

a. Argentina

      Since the mid 1980s, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, IAEA, and OPANAL have signed or ratified different agreements and declarations of a regional and global scope on the peaceful uses of nuclear and chemical material and substances. These were some of several other initiatives which led Argentina to take active steps towards collective efforts aimed at curbing access to weapons of mass destruction. The end of the Argentinean CONDOR programme was another important initiative in this same direction. In the early 1990s, another action was taken with the decision by the Argentinean Government on 29 May, 1991, to adhere to the MTCR. This announcement made by the Ministry of Defence was followed a year latter by a decree of law stating that "...all States [have] the obligation of taking firm and united action against such proliferation". 558  The Decree also states that "[t]he Argentine Republic strongly supports exclusively peaceful development of space activities and reaffirms its political will to work in this field with a high sense of responsibility and transparency." These statements reviewed, unequivocally, the direction in which the Government had taken and the political determination to have a clear policy with respect to outer space technologies and weapons of mass destruction.

      Export controls were placed under the responsibility of the National Committee for Control of Sensitive and War Material Exports, which was actually created in 1985 under the name of Committee for Coordination of Policies for the Export of War Material. 559  The renewed Committee is formed by representatives of 3 ministries 560  whom attend all meetings on export matters, and additional representatives from the National Atomic Energy Commission, the National Commission on Space Activities, and the Armed Forces Institute for Scientific and Technical Research who are expected to meet only on matters related to their respective competences. The Committee evaluates each individual request for Prior Export Licence, the authorization necessary for export activities. Evaluation for the granting of such licence is based on the following criteria:

  • Argentina's firm commitment regarding the non-proliferation of WMD; and
  • Relevant international considerations. 561 

      Both criteria require some degree of analyses by the Committee. The first criterion presumably involves an appraisal of WMD production capabilities by the recipient country. It also calls for an assessment of any implications that Argentina exports may have on the development of such weapons. The success of both of these efforts may require some kind of access to sensitive information. In the second case, however, the Committee evaluates the implications that any export could have to regional and other political and/or military circumstances, including vis-à-vis Argentina national policies and its allies. This analytical phase may also involve diplomatic consultations, which allows Argentina to have a better sense of how other countries would react to such exports.

      Some restrictions are placed on the export of specific material or technology that include reactors and enriched uranium, nuclear technical assistance, as well as "...certain non nuclear products which might be potentially useful for non peaceful developments". These items may be authorized only provided that:

  • a bilateral agreement on nuclear cooperation for peaceful purposes with the recipient country is in force;
  • the recipient country is part of a complete safeguard agreement with the IAEA;
  • the recipient country is expressly bound not to use the exported material for the purpose of nuclear explosions;
  • the recipient country adopts suitable safety standards for the material exported;
  • the recipient country is bound to request the consent of the Argentine Government prior to transfer or reprocessing of:
    • material exported;
    • material derived from the material exported. 562 

      Besides these restrictions, the Decree also stipulates areas where no exports are, as a general rule, authorized. This includes materials, equipment, technology, technical assistance and/or services related to the conversion and enrichment of uranium, fuel, processing, heavy water and plutonium productions. 563  In addition, the export, reexport, or transfer that might contribute to the development of missile, in any degree, is also not authorized, including certain components related to the development of space launchers. 564 

      Export controls are tighter for certain products which are listed in two annexes to this Decree of law. Annex A incorporates the lists of products and criteria recommended for export controls in the MTCR. 565  The Annex is divided into two categories, both of which have subdivisions detailing the specific items to be controlled (see Table III.1.3). The Decree is very clear in defining that equipment and technologies in Category I are considered to be the most sensitive of all items controlled. In this context, if a single item in Category I is included in a system, the system itself is to be considered as part of Category I, unless the sad item cannot be separated, eliminated or duplicated. 566  While technology transfer is to be evaluated under the same principle and procedure than equipment, approval of such transfer authorizes the prospective receiver to acquire the minimum required technology for the installation, operation, maintenance, and repair of the equipment exported.

      Category I of the Annex includes a long section on definition of terms in order to avoid misinterpretation of the items subject to control. For example, the term development covers a large realm of possibilities ranging from research design to projects, pilot production schemes and mounted and test prototypes. Production is understood to be all production phases: e.g., production engineering, integration inspection, test, etc. Most interesting is the attention paid to define the term technology: described to be the specific information required for the development, production, or use of a product, which can be technical data or assistance. Here too the Decree is very meticulous and describes technical data to include diagrams, formulas, diskettes, tapes, instruction manuals, and others, while technical assistance consists of training, consulting, and etc.

Table III.1.3: Extract of Annex A, Argentine Decree List of Missile Equipment and Technology Subject to Control
Category I
1. Complete rocket systems (including ballistic missiles, space launchers and sounding rockets) and unmanned aircraft (including cruise missiles, guided air targets, and reconnaissance missiles) capable of carrying a payload of at least 500kg to a minimum distance of 300km, as well as the production means of special design for these systems;
2. Complete subsystems utilized in systems of the Item 1, as well as their means of production and their special design equipment such as:
a. individual rocket stages
b. re-entry vehicles;
c. solid rocket motors;
d. guidance systems;
e. buster vector control subsystems;
f. warhead safety mechanisms.
Category II
3. Propulsion components and equipments usable in systems described in Item 1 of Category I, means of production and their special design equipment and productions equipment for the same systems;
4. Propellents and chemical products for propellents;
5. Technology or equipment of production, including their components specially conceived for a number of purposes related to liquid and solid propellents;
6. Equipments, technical data and procedure for the production de structural composites usable in systems described in Item 1. Category I, as well as the components, accessories and software specially conceived for the same systems;
7. Pyrolytic material, equipment, and technology;
8. Structural material usable in systems described in Item 1, Category I;
9. Certain instrumentation, navigation system equipment, and its related production and testing equipment, as well as correspondent components and software;
10. Flight control systems and technology, conceived or modified to be utilized in systems described in Item 1, Category I, as well as special test design, calibration, and alignment equipment;
11. Avionic equipment and technology specially conceived or modified to be utilized in systems described in Item 1, Category I, including software specially conceived for these ends;
12. Launch support equipment, installations and software for systems described in Item 1, Category I;
13. Analogic and digital computers or differential digital analysers specially conceived or modified to be utilized in systems described in Item 1, Category I;
14. Analogic or digital adapters usable in systems described in Item 1, Category I;
15. Test equipment and installations for training to be utilized in systems described in Items 1 and 2, Category I, as well as software conceived for the same purpose;
16. Software specially conceived, or software specially conceived for hybrid computers, specially conceived for the modelling of simulation, or the integration of systems described in Items 1 and 2, Category I;
17. Material, devices, and software specially conceived to obtain reduced observation, such as radar reflection and ultraviolet/infra-red signatures and acoustic (stealth technology) for applications utilized in systems described in Items 1 and 2, Category I;
18. Devices utilized in the protection of rocket systems and unmanned aircraft against nuclear effects (e.g., electromagnetic pulse, x-rays, combined explosive and thermic effects), utilized for systems in Item 1, Category I.

      However, it should be observed that the definition of the term technology does not include either basic scientific research or technology in the public domain. Other exceptions have to do with minimum limits placed to the capability of items such rockets and guidance systems.

      Category II contains 16 items which describe dual-use material and technology with a much greater degree of detail than Category I. For instance, as regards propellents, it gives the names of precursors and other material for the production of liquid and solid fuel. It also describes in details specially conceived or used hardware, software, and technology for the purpose of design, development, production, test, and training of rocket systems and subsystems. This including main manned and unmanned rocket bodies, cruise missiles, and other vectors, their motors, guidance system, warhead/payload, reentry-vehicle, and equipment and products used for their manufacture, including radar and other detection systems. As regards technology transfer, attention is paid to both civil- and military-use technology where controlled items include panting and protection material which could provide for, inter alia, stealth capability and protection of nuclear effects.

      Since the MTCR lists of products and criteria do not cover other non-missile-related sensitive substances and material used as precursor for the production of chemical and biological weapons, Annex B lists chemical substances subject to export controls (see Table III.1.4). The export, reexport or transfer of these chemicals are also subject to export licence and, as in the nuclear field, none of these activities are authorized if these substances are presumed to be used for the production of WMD.

Table III.1.4: Extract of Annex B, Argentine Decree List of Chemical Substances Subject to Control

Chemical Components
2-Phosopate oxiclorure
4-Methyl phosphonil difluoruro
5-Methyl phosphonil diclururo
6-Dimethyl phosphate
7-Tricloruro phosphate
8-Trimethyl phosphate
9-Cloruro de Tionilo
10-3-hidroxi-1- methylpiperidina
11-Cloruru N.N Diisopropil-(beta)
12-Tiol N,N-Diisopropil- (beta)
14-Fluoruro de potasio
17-Diethyl etiphosphanate
18-Diethyl N,N-Dimethyl-
19-Diethyl phosphite
20-Hidrocloruuo dimethylamina
21-Etil phosphinil dicloruro
22-Etil phosphonil dicloruro
23-Etil phosphonil difloruro
24-Hydrogen fluoruro
25-Benzilato de metilo
26-Methyl phosphinil dicloruro
27-Etanl N,N diisopropil- (beta)-Amino
28-Alcohol Pinacolilico
29-Methylphosphanate 0-Ethyl 2
30-Trietil Phosphite
31-Tricloruro de arsenico
32-Bencilico acid
33-Diethyl methylposphonita
34-Dimethyl etilphsphonato
35-Ethyl phosphinil difluoruro
36-Methyl phosphinil difluoruro
38-Phosphorus pentacloruro
40-Cianuro de potasio
41-Bifluoruro de potasio
42-Bifloruro de amonio
43-Bifloruro de sodio
44-Fluoruro de sodio
45-Cianuto de sodio
47-Phosphorus pentasulfuro
50-Sulfuro de sodio
51-Monocloruro sulfuric
52-Dicloruro sulfuric
53-Hidrocloruro de
54-Cloruro de oxalilo
55-Cloruro de tiofosforilo
57-Methylphosphonic acid
58-Dicloruro N,-
59-Cloruro hidrocloruro

      The Decree provides the Committee with additional legal power for assessment of export requirements involving items not listed in the Annexes. This is clear in the following article:

The export of materials, equipment, technologies, technical assistance and /or nuclear, chemical, bacteriological or missilistic services not included in the present decree or its Annexes shall be equally bound to obtain a Prior Export Licence when it becomes known or there is an assumption that they may be applied to projects or activities related to mass destruction weapons. 567 

      There is therefore no room for legal gaps as regards such items, even if both Annexes are required by law to be updated periodically. The National Customs Administration is the institution in charge of enforcing the law and the Custom and Criminal codes contain penalties for transactions completed without observing the provisions of the law. The direct or indirect participation of Government officials or personnel in programmes or activities of third countries which run contrary to this law is also prohibited.

      A great degree of transparency is evident in the Decree, which stipulates that the Government shall keep Congress informed of export requirements. However, another also very important obligation is set for the Government to take active actions to cooperate internationally in curbing proliferation as follows:

The Argentine Republic shall coordinate its policies with other States which are suppliers of materials referred to in this decree, un order to contribute to the establishment of an effective control system on exports related to weapons of mass destruction. 568 

      The Argentine Government took two additional measures in the course of 1993 in line with this obligation stipulating further national and collective actions to curb the spread of weapons of mass destruction. First, it signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the United States on 12 February covering the transfer and protection of strategic technology. Second, it presented another Decree of law on 24 June reinforcing the 1992 legislation. 569  This new Decree had two major objectives which are worth mentioning here.

      One objective was to strengthen the implementation of the 1992 legislation by adding the control of certain import of sensitive goods, services, and technology into the country. This was done by empowering the National Committee for Control of Sensitive and War Material Exports also to be in charge of imports, for which a new Import Licence would be necessary thereinafter. A second objective was to add a new annex to the 1992 Decree of law (Annex C, see Table III.1.5) on nuclear material with items which, along with the items in Annexes A and B, are subject to the acquisition of a Prior Export Licence.

      Annex C identifies basic or fissionable material subject to control, which are understood to be the material defined in Article XX of the IAEA statute. 570  Some exceptions are made as, for example, for small quantities of nuclear material used in instruments or material used for non-nuclear purposes. Most equipment under control are those specially conceived for use in nuclear or related plants such as nuclear fuel tubes and fuel injection/extraction instruments. Non-nuclear reactor material under control range from liquid elements such as heavy water to more complex material such as reprocessing plants.

Table III.1.5: Extract of Annex C, Argentine Decree List of Nuclear Material, Equipment, and Technology Subject to Control
Material and Equipment

1. Basic or fissionable material;
2.1. Reactors and their equipment;
2.1.1. Nuclear reactors capable of working in conditions to maintain and control a sustained chain of fission reaction;
2.1.2. Reactor pressure containers;
2.1.3. Reactor fuel load/unload machines;
2.1.4. Reactor control bars;
2.1.5. Reactor pressure tubes;
2.1.6. Circonio-made tubes;
2.1.7. Primary refrigeration pumps;
2.2. Reactor's non-nuclear material;
2.2.1. Deuterio and heavy water;
2.2.2. Nuclear-grade graffiti;
2.3.1. Irradiated fuel reprocessing plants and specially conceived or prepared equipment for such operations;
2.4.1. Fuel production plants;
2.5.1. Equipment, different from analysis instruments, specially conceived or prepared for the separation of uranium isotope;
2.6.1. Heavy water production plants, deuterio and deuterio-derived products, and equipment specially designed or prepared equipment for such operations.

1. Heavy 1. Technical data in physical form defined as important for the designing, construction, operation, or maintenance of enrichment or reprocessing installations, as well as for heavy water, or of their principle critical components;2. Principle critical components:a) Principle critical components of a gaz diffusion isotope separation plant: diffusion barrier;b) Principle critical components of a gaz centrifugal isotope separation plant: centrifugal material resistant to corrosion;c) Principle critical components of an Chorros injector isotope separation plant: Chorros injection unites;d) Technical data in physical form defined as important for the designing, construction, operation, or maintenance of enrichment or reprocessing installations, as well as for heavy water, or of their principle critical components;3. The transfer of technology of a significant fraction of the articles deemed essential for the functioning of enrichment, reprocessing, and production of heavy water installations, in conjunction with technical knowledge of the construction and operation of these installations, shall be considered as the transfer of installations or principal critical components of these installations;4. Plants of the "same type" of those of heavy water enrichment, reprocessing, and production are installations which the design, construction, or functioning are based on physical or chemical processes that are identical or similar to:a) an isotope separation plant of a gaz diffusion type;b) an isotope separation plant of a gaz centrifugal type;c) an isotope separation plant of a Chorros injection type;d) an isotope separation plant of a vortical process type;e) a fuel reprocessing plant that utilizes the solvent extraction process;f) a heavy water plant that utilizes the interchange process;g) a heavy water plant that utilizes the electrolitic process;h) a heavy water plant that utilizes the hydrogene distillation process.

      Technology transfer occupies a prominent place in this Annex. 571  Transfer controls cover both technical data related to various aspects of the building of enrichment and processing installations and their principal critical components. Exceptions are nonetheless made to knowledge which is already available in the public domain. Strong emphasis is also placed on the control of technology related to heavy water enrichment, reprocessing, or production. In this context, the Decree extends the understanding of the legal definition of these plants to include other plants for which the design, construction, or functioning are based on physical or chemical processes that are identical or similar to those of heavy water enrichment, reprocessing, or production. These other plants are referred to as plants of the "same type".

      Annex C also covers another very important aspect of technology transfer, that is to say manufacturing capabilities built over time resulting from exports. It is stipulated that any installation of the "same type", or their principal critical components, may be presumed to have used transferred technology if it is constructed at the recipient country and the first operation starts within at least 20 years after the technology has been transferred. For this purpose, the Annex identifies two specific cases which are if an installation:

  • has been transferred or contains principal critical components transferred;
  • is of the "same type" constructed after the technology has been transferred. 572 

      The scope of analysis for establishing this presumption is still larger, since the period of at least 20 years does not limit in time, inter alia, the right to consider an installation as (a) in construction either on the basis of transferred technology or using the same, or (b) in operation. With these specific details, the Argentine law on technology transfer related to weapons of mass destruction appears as one of the most comprehensive national legislation in force. Although it has borrowed much from the style of prohibitions in other selective regimes, it has served as model to other countries. It does have its uniqueness and its approach could well inspire initiatives on the international level to develop a coherent and exhaustive multilateral agreement to ensure the transfer of sensitive technology, while at the same time curbing the access to WMD.

b. Brazil

      War material exports in Brazil is controlled through different laws. First, in Article 21, paragraph VI of Chapter II of the Federal Constitution that provides the Government with the competence to authorize and oversee the production and commerce of war material. 573  This legal competence originates from a Presidential Decree of July 1934, regulating the establishment of companies intending to produce arms and war munitions for both national use and export. 574  The Decree also assigned the supervision of these regulations to the Ministry of the Army. 575 

      Under a Federal Decree of 28 January 1965, which approved the Regulation for the Supervision of Controlled Products (R-105), any company producing controlled material must also obtain a Certificate of Registry from the Ministry of the Army as a licence to operate. The companies concerned, which include exporting companies, subcontracting companies, and producers of controlled raw material, 576  should also comply with the legal norms and regulations of importing countries. 577  Over 500 controlled items are listed, classified into ten groups of utilization and three categories (1,2,3) of control. The lower the category number, the stricter the control. Missiles (item 475) are part of category 1 and, together with rockets, fuel, oxidants and additives, are classified under the same group and subject to the most stringent supervision. 578 

      As regards material related to dual-use outer space technologies (missiles and rocket launchers specifically), relatively recent legislative changes have occurred following almost half a decade of discussions. On February 1992, a draft law was submitted to Congress regulating the import and export of war material. 579  The proposal covered import/export operations for goods of direct bellicose employment, dual-use, and use in the nuclear area, as well as services directly linked to them. After 3 years of debate, on June 1995, this draft proposal was withdrawn from the Congress and a new version which was more focussed on missiles and rockets and other items related to their manufacturing and use was tabled.

      This new proposal was more encompassing and elaborate than its predecessor and covered the export of sensitive goods and services directly linked to them. 580  Approved on December 1994, the new law made the export of these goods and services considerably much stricter, although it clearly states that the law does not intend to create difficulties for national space programmes, nor for international co-operation in this area--as long as they do not contribute to delivery systems of WMD. The scope of the law covers any transfer of launching systems which is not passenger aircraft, capable of transporting WMD, as well as goods and services directly related to them. It is important to note, however, that these systems become under control of this law only if they can carry a payload of at least 500kg to a minimum distance of 300km.

      The law is also very detailed as regards all types of commercial contact that an exporter could have with a prospective client, covering the following stages of a sale:

  • Preliminary negotiation;
  • Participation in bidding;
  • Shipment of samples;
  • Participation in fairs and expositions;
  • Actual exports of goods and services; and
  • Other operations or actions which have affinity with the export of missile goods and their related services.

      Nine government organs act in the implementation of the law and are entrusted with several complementary responsibilities. The Secretariat of Strategic Affairs of the President of the Republic, for example, is the co-ordinating body of exports. Beyond this capacity, authorization or rejection of exports are of the competence of the Minister chief of this Secretariat. In spite of this competence, the Minister takes any request for export to the attention of the President when he/she judges an export application to have political, strategic, and technological implications; as well as in the event that no consensus is reached between the nine governmental organs.

      Some of the functions of the other organs include the competence of the Ministry of External Relations, which is tasked to comment on the convenience of the export as regards the country's external relations. This Ministry also provides the other organs with information on the Brazilian foreign policy and the international commerce of missile goods and their related services.

      The Ministry of Industry, Commerce, and Tourism mainly intervenes in practical matters with a commercial nature, such as financing, pricing, and commission of agents. In contrast, the Ministry of Science and Technology has a more encompassing role, ranging from the protection of Brazilian developed or acquired strategically valuable technical know-how, to issues related to the exchange of scientific and technological matters between Brazilian and foreign companies.

      The Brazilian Space Agency also has a number of important tasks in the implementation of this law. Among them is to pronounce itself on the convenience of the proposed export in light of the objectives and principle of the National Police on the Development of Space Activities (PNDAE) and the National System of Space Activities (SNAE). Another more technical function of the Agency is to define whether a given export should be classified as the export of goods or services.

      The three separate armed services, Ministry of the Navy, Ministry of the Army, and the Ministry of Aeronautics, are tasked to make their views known as regards technical or strategic factors, notably as regards the need to protect technical and military know-how. These ministries are also attributed the task of controlling, upon request, the transit through national territory and the embarking of the material to be exported.

      The High-Command of the Armed Forces, which is a Ministry in itself, plays a less extensive role than the other organs, since it is tasked to help assist exporters abroad by means of military attachés in different countries. This and all other government organs are also tasked to inform the Secretariat of Strategic Affairs of the President of the Republic of any reason, within the ambit of their respective responsibilities, that justifies the suspension of negotiation or export. Any export application is treated as secret.

      Exporting companies are required to comply with a series of procedures. For instance, previous authorization is necessary before any activity such as preliminary negotiation, participation in biddings, shipment of samples, or participation in fairs and expositions. Even non-usable samples sent abroad have to be reshipped to Brazil and controlled upon arrival. Exporters have to present guarantees as to the final destination of exported items. In this context, another important clause concerns a set of obligations on the part of the country of destination. Moreover, whenever a transfer can contribute to the production of WMD, a receiving country has to provide appropriate guaranties that:

  • transferred items will be used only for the purpose previously announced and their use not modified;
  • transferred items will not be modified or reproduced without the consent of Brazil; and
  • transferred items, replicates, or derived products will not be transferred without the consent of Brazil.

      The law also contains a List of Missile Goods and Related Services which is divided into two categories, covering equipment, services and technologies (see Table III.1.6). Category I comprises the most sensitive items. The law also stipulates that if an item in this category is included in a system, this system will also be considered to be of Category I; exception is only made if the item cannot be separated, removed, or copied. In principle, the transfer of installations for the production of items in Category I will not be authorized. One should also note that the law stipulates that the transfer of projects, technology of production, and of other services directly related to items in this List shall be submitted to the same degree of careful control than that imposed on equipment itself. Another important feature of this law is that the possibility of an increase in the range of rockets and unmanned aircraft--e.g., by decreasing the size of the intended original payload--is a factor which is taken into consideration in the granting of authorization for exports. The law contains several other subdivision in the headings presented in Table III.1.6, and it also has much more details to be taken into account in the decision process of export.

Table III.1.6: Extract of the List of Missile Goods and Related Services: Brazil
Category I
1. Complete rocket systems (including ballistic missiles, space launchers, sounding rockets) and unmanned aircraft (including cruise missiles, air targets, guided or remotely-piloted air reconnaissance systems) capable of carrying a payload of at least 500kg to a minimum distance of 300km, as well as the production means of these systems;
2. Complete subsystems utilized in systems of the items mentioned above and means and equipment of production;
ex.: individual rocket stages, re-entry vehicles, thermic protections, rocket motors, precision guided systems, payload firing mechanisms.
Category II
1. Propulsion components and equipments used in systems described in Category I, 1, production installations and productions equipments specially conceived for the same systems;
2. Propellents and chemical products utilized in propellants;
3. Technology or equipment of production, including their components specially conceived for a number of purposes related to liquid and solid propellents;
4. Equipments, technical data and procedure for the production de structural composites utilized in systems described in Category I, 1, as well as the components, accessories and software specially conceived for the same systems;
5. Equipment and services directly related to certain pyrolytic purposes;
6. Structural material utilized in systems described in Category I, 1;
7. Certain instrumentation, equipment, and systems of navigation and orientation, and its respective production and testing equipment, as well as components and software;
8. Flight control systems and directly related services, conceived or modified to be utilized in systems described in Category I, 1, as well as test, calibration, and alignment equipment specially conceived for these ends;
9. Avionic equipment, services directly related and components conceived or modified to be utilized in systems described in Category I, 1, including software specially conceived for these ends;
10. Launch support equipment, installations and software to be used in systems described in Category I, 1,
11. Analogic and digital computers or differential digital analysers specially conceived or modified to be utilized in systems described in Category I,1;
12. Analogic-digital converters utilized in systems described in Category I,1;
13. Test equipment and installations to be utilized in systems described in Category I,1, as well as software conceived for the same purpose;
14. Software specially conceived, or software specially conceived for hybrid computers, specially conceived for modelling, simulation, or the integration of systems described in Category I,1;
15. Material, devices, and software specially conceived to obtain reduced observation, such as radar reflection and ultraviolet/infra-red signatures and acoustic (stealth technology) for applications utilized in systems described in Category I,1;
16. Devices utilized in the protection of rocket systems and unmanned aircraft against nuclear effects (e.g., electromagnetic pulse, x-rays, combined effects of hear and wind blow), utilized for systems in Category I,1;
17. Complete rocket systems (including ballistic missiles, space launchers, sounding rockets) and unmanned aircraft (including cruise missiles, air targets, guided or remotely-piloted air reconnaissance systems) not covered in Category I,1 capable of a range equal or superior to 300km;
18. Complete subsystems to be used in systems under Category II, 17, but not in systems described in Category I,1, as well as production and means and equipment specially conceived for that purpose.

c. India

      Indian import and export activities were primarily governed by the 1947 Import and Export (Control) Act, the 1992 Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Ordinance, and the 1962 Customs Act. Both the 1947 and the 1992 regulations were replaced by the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act in 1992. 581  In essence, the 1992 Act empowers the Central Government to make orders and announce export and import policy. A Director-General of Foreign Trade is appointed by the Central Government to provide advice of export and import policy, as well as to carry-out that policy. The Act also defines and codifies power relating to conduct search and seizure of goods, documents and other items, establish contravention (penalty or confiscation) for the non-respect of import and export policy, and grants power to certain authority to act in accordance with the 1908 Code of Civil Procedure.

      The Indian export and import policy system is based on a five year period, the first such policy period after the implementation of the Foreign Trade Act lasted from 1 April 1992 to 31 March 1997. 582  It defines general provisions of export and import regulations, covering a range of activities such as the promotion of capital goods, the export of diamond, gem and jewellery, as well as it establishes the what is referred to as a negative list of exports and a negative list of imports. No specific mention is made on outer space goods as such, but some degree of detailed on items which are classified as licensable or prohibited for export is found. One example are the chemicals included in Schedule 1 of the 1993 CWC agreement. They are classified as prohibited, while items in Schedules 2 and 3 are listed as restricted items which need export licence. 583 

d. Israel

      The State of Israel has the most sophisticated military and space industries in the Middle East. While the country has always exercised control over technology transfer in the past through the Commodities and Services Control law of 1957 governing both commercial and defence exports, a recent law has made procedures for such transactions more complex and transparent. 584  This law authorizes the proclamation of defence equipment, know-how, and missile equipment and technology subject to control.

      Two Ministries have jurisdiction over different areas of technology and arms transfers. While the Ministry of Defence (MoD) covers defence goods--including missile equipment and technology, services, defence know-how, and technical data, the Ministry of Industry and Commerce (MIC) is in charge of exports related to certain dual-use missile equipment and technology, as well as chemical weapons precursors. 585  MIC is also expected to be in charge of the export of biological agents and a wide range of other dual-use goods that might be used to manufacture CBW.

      The new law has some peculiarities. For example, it covers items inherently or specifically designed for military applications. In addition, it governs dual-use goods only if they are for military use. Below is a list of the items under control: 586 

Table III.1.7: Israeli Defence Equipment, Know-how and Services Under Control
1. Firearms, guns, cannons, mortars, etc
2. Ammunition for the articles in cat. 1, torpedoes, bombs, mines, explosives, propellants, etc
3. Missile and rockets (air, ground, and sea)
4. Military engineering equipment
5. Tanks and military vehicles
6. Vessels of war and naval equipment
7. Aircraft and associated equipment
8. Electronic warfare systems
9. Military photography equipment
10. Radar Systems
11. Military Computers (Hardware and Software)
12. Navigation Systems
13. Monitoring and eavesdropping equipment
14. Cryptographic and information security systems
15. Command, control, and communication systems
16. Communication and telecommunication systems
17. Personal articles and protective equipment
18. Raw material
19. Metals and casting
20. Military laser equipment (inc. Designators and range finders)
21. Accommodation stores and security systems
22. Observation equipment
23. Optronic systems and night vision equipment
24. Military training equipment
25. Defence articles, know-how and defence services not otherwise enumerated

      Note that various that items cover outer space dual-use technologies such as satellites, launchers and ground segments. In some cases, however, it is difficult to define a clear line between military and civilian items, both as regards products and know-how.

      Unlike other countries, Israel requires its exporters to file two types of authorization for exports. One is called the Negotiation Permit which is required for the "...preliminary stage of presentation or introduction of a defence article or defence know-how to a foreign potential customer". 587  This phase includes marketing, negotiating, and the signing for sale and is valid for one year. 588  The application for a negotiating permit is examined by the Director of the Defence Export Controls Department in the capacity of the chairperson of an Advisory Committee, which advices the Director-General of MoD to accept, cancel, or impose conditions on the application. 589  The final decision takes into consideration foreign policy issues, security disclosure, technological aspects, foreign made know-how, end-use and end-user, United Nations resolutions and international control regimes, and the credibility of the applicant. 590 

      Having gone through the first stage, an exporter is then authorized to initiate the process to apply for an Export Licence which allows for the actual export: an Export Licence is also valid for one year. However, export licenses are granted only after original end-use and end-user documents are produced and, in some cases, only after approval of the Government.

      As it is the case in most countries which have developed a detailed export control legislation, any violation to what is referred to as the commodities and services control orders is considered a criminal and administrative offence. Penalties in this case range from 3 to 5 years of imprisonment and could also involve the payment of fines.

      In retrospect, not all established and emerging space competent States have specific regulations on dual use outer space technologies. In addition, Some of these States which have adopted such regulations are still in a process of learning who to implement them. Since some of them are relatively new, they are still subject to change as the international security environment evolves.

B. Multilateral Arrangements

      Several internationally co-ordinated arrangements have been set up by small groups of countries to curb the access to weapons of mass destruction, conventional weapons, and their delivery vehicles since the end of World War Two. Among them are the former Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Control, the Zangger Committee, the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Australia Group, and the Missile Technology Control Regime. These arrangements are considered to be informal and non-binding, and therefore do not require signature and ratification by any member. Instead, participation in any of them represents a political commitment to pursue a common and coordinated aspect of national and foreign policy. Beyond these initiatives, efforts to create export control regulations have also been undertaken at different fora such as at the United Nations, the European Union, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, NATO, and at meetings of the G7 and the Permanent Five Members of the UN Security-Council. None of these efforts have so far resulted in legally binding multilateral agreements. The debate in some of them are have actually halted or is in a dormant state.

      The real effectiveness of informal and non-binding controls, or that of regulations applied by regional institutions, such as the ones mentioned above is not certain. Advocates of this type of control place emphasis on the ability of these control regimes to (a) raise the cost of the acquisition of certain weapons capabilities, in particular weapons of mass destruction, and (b) further complicate the acquisition of these types of weapons, and (c) raise the risk of disclosure of clandestine programmes. On the other hand, others argue that these arrangements are non-universal in nature and discriminatory in practice, thus leading to a number of problems between the technology haves and have not States.

      As in the case of national laws and regulations, some of these ad hoc arrangements also cover access to dual-use outer space material, technologies and services. Therefore, whether or not selective control regimes can be argued to be effective means of restraining access to certain weapons, they have an impact on the development of outer space technologies; notably technologies sought by EmSC Sates. The evolving nature of events in international security has affected the very existence of these regimes and several changes aimed at introducing more coherent and consistent controls on the transfer of dual-use technology are now under way, both in the composition and structure of these selective regimes. Below is a discussion of the origin and status of these regimes, as well as an analysis of prospects for their future.

1. Beyond COCOM: The Wassenaar Arrangement

      The Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Control (COCOM) existed from 1950 to 1994 as a non-binding international arrangement on trade embargoes. It consisted of seventeen members--of which at least ten were among EtSC States 591 --controlling the export of goods and technologies that could improve the military capabilities of certain countries in Eastern Europe, Asia, and the former Soviet Union. Besides the control of military equipment, COCOM maintained a list of items which included potential dual-use equipment and technologies under the heading The International Industrial List. 592  COCOM was therefore a country- and subject-specific control regime aimed primarily at limiting the flow of military and dual-use technologies from Western Europe, Canada and the United States to certain countries for which they wished to maintain a technological gap in the conception, design, and development of military equipment.

      Several changes were made in either the list for dual-use goods and technologies or with respect to the level of access to these commodities, particularly as of the late 1980s. 593  By then, with the changes in East/West relations and particularly European security, it became apparent that the future of COCOM was ever more uncertain, especially since some of its rationale and undertakings were in contradiction with other activities being pursued by COCOM members.

      The future of COCOM therefore included two major possible changes. One was a thorough revision of the countries towards which control was to be exercised. How could the West pursue a policy to integrate former Eastern bloc countries into a larger Europe, while at the same time exercising COCOM controls over these same countries? Some developments had already taken place in the form of attribution of privileged status to certain former Eastern bloc countries. However, the integration of these very countries into old or new forms of military co-operation with the West further pressed for answers to questions related to a new identification of COCOM targets. The accession of all of the former Soviet Republics--except Georgia--to the North Atlantic Cooperation Council (NACC) at NATO headquarters in 10 March 1992 represented only one example. 594  Another development furthering cooperation was the opening of a new civil outer space and military air space equipment and technology markets in the East. 595 

      Besides the changes with respect to previously proscribed COCOM targets, there was discussions that a COCOM revision could also have included a redirection of controls to countries on the African and Latin American continents. Some argued that such a collective measure could effectively increase restrictions on technology transfers which would include the flow of outer space technologies to military uses. Supporters of this view often quoted the impact that COCOM restriction had on China in this respect. However, this was a controversial issue which did not find much support, in particular, among COCOM members of continental Europe.

      Moreover, it was not certain that such a move would have been in the interest of COCOM members, nor that it would have the same or similar impact as in the East/West or West/Chinese context. Furthermore, significant questions remained to be addressed as to whether a system set-up in the background of potential East-West military confrontation would find its reason in a quite different North-South scenario. By the end of the 1990/91 conflict between the US-led coalition against Iraq, it seemed to be clear to the Five Permanent Members of the UN Security-Council that selective regimes did not prevent Iraq to build conventional and WMD capabilities which became a regional threat. 596  This situation arguably further stimulated changes in the COCOM arrangement.

      In the course of 1993, the view that COCOM was becoming ever more obsolete was also expressed based on the grounds of advances in technology. One example was the sale of certain items under control, which could reportedly be produced by non-COCOM members which could themselves sell them to those States under COCOM export controls. This was demonstrated, for instance, in the case of rapidly growing technology such as that of computers. 597  Reportedly, non-COCOM producers (India, South Korea, and Taiwan) of multi-processor systems could manufacture computer workstations at the 210 Million Theoretical Operations Per Second (MTOPS) level using a combination of new technologies (e.g., semiconductors) which were not under control. This implied that non-COCOM producers could sell these goods to countries under COCOM expert controls, as well as they could place themselves in a better position for competition vis-à-vis those COCOM States which were even prevented to sell single-processor systems. Lifting barriers on certain products could have been commercially beneficial to one COCOM member State, but not necessarily to all members. 598  This generated internal conflicts and bargaining as to what items should or should not have been removed from the export control list. 599  Other arguments pointed to the declining international consensus on the issue of export control, 600  in particular, selective control regimes such as COCOM.

      As a result of all of these events, the COCOM arrangement was terminated on 31 March 1994. This termination not leave a gap in selective control regimes since it was reportedly replaced by another arrangement with a specific set of concerns in line with the new international security environment. Indeed, the "New Forum", as it was referred to, was described as filling the gap of the need for a "...more broadly-based arrangement designed to enhance transparency and restraint in conventional weapons and sophisticated technologies to countries whose behaviour is cause for concern and to regions of potential instability". 601  Initial discussions between COCOM members indicated that the new arrangement would be based on the principles of (a) discouraging the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, (b) retaining some sort of co-ordination and discipline over the trade of conventional weapons, and (c) paying attention to countries which buy dual-use technologies for civil-use and adapt them for military purposes. 602  It was also expected that the COCOM list of controlled dual-use technologies would be significantly reduced, although the transfer of sensitive technologies would also be controlled.

      The new arrangement was also expected to be enlarged by including the former COCOM members and about half a dozen other western countries. Moreover, it was to include an unprecedented feature which would change the original nature of the former arrangement: the New Forum was also expected to extend to former COCOM-embargo-aimed countries such as China, Russia and possibly former Eastern block counties. In addition, COCOM member governments reportedly agreed to undertake national controls of industrial, military, and atomic energy items which were under COCOM lists to any destination in the interim between the end of COCOM and the creation of the New Forum.

      However, it was only as of 5 March 1995 that a more comprehensive regime was set up with the creation of the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional and Dual-use Goods and Technologies. 603  Formally inaugurated on July 1996 in Vienna, 604  the Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) has a Secretariat located at Vienna in charge of facilitating the work of the Arrangement, which contains what is referred to as Initial Elements comprising basic principles for their cooperation. 605  The announced purpose of the WA is to contribute to regional and international security by:

  • promoting transparency and greater responsibility with regard to transfers of conventional arms and dualuse goods and technologies, thus preventing destabilizing accumulations;
  • seeking through national policies, to ensure that transfers of these items do not contribute to the development or enhancement of military capabilities which undermine these goals, and are not diverted to support such capabilities;
  • complementing and reinforcing, without duplication, the existing control regimes for weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems, as well as other internationally recognized measures designed to promote transparency and greater responsibility, by focusing on the threats to international and regional peace and security which may arise from transfers of armaments and sensitive dualuse goods and technologies where risks are judged greatest; and,
  • enhancing cooperation to prevent the acquisition of armaments and sensitive dualuse items for military enduses, if the situation in a region or the behavior of a state is, or becomes, a cause for serious concern to the Participating States. 606 

      A number of fundamentally different features are apparent between the former COCOM and the new WA. One important such change is the responsibility placed on the members of this new arrangement to assess what is destabilizing export control of arms and dual-use goods and technologies. Another change worth mentioning is the need to assess the behaviour of a given State. At present Iran, Iraq, Libya, and the PDRK are quoted as being States "...whose behaviour is a cause for serious concern". 607  These types of concern, inscribed in a multilateral arrangement, are part of a new philosophy of control regimes in this post Cold War era: denial alone is no longer either enough or desirable, active preventive actions are necessary to enhance control measures.

      The WA has different types of obligations. One of the major objectives is to prevent unauthorized transfers or retransfers of items set forth in lists of (a) dualuse goods and technologies and (b) munitions. It is important to note that, as in the old arrangement, member States are expected to control all of these items, although the decision to allow or deny transfers of any item remains the "...sole responsibility of each Participating State". 608  In addition, WA members have agreed to ensure transparency by notifying transfers and denials. This is seen as an essential clause which allows for a better understanding of situations which could be in contradiction with the purpose of the Arrangement. However, this new clause could also be seen as a new approach to the perception of responsibility each member State should have not only in such arrangements but also in formal treaties.

      This sense of responsibility to enforce controls is also accompanied by the need to ensure the transfer of items under control in specific cases. For instance, the WA also provides a non-interference clause. It affirms that the arrangement is not aimed at impeding bona fide civil transactions; nor is it directed to "...interfere with the rights of States to acquire legitimate means with which to defend themselves pursuant to Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations". 609 

      The well functioning of the Arrangement is in a way largely based on the voluntary exchange of information between WA members who meet regularly. This feature of the Arrangement is particularly important since these exchanges are expected to enhance transparency and lead to discussions among all members. Such exchanges are seen as important elements which should "...assist in developing common understandings of the risks associated with the transfer..." of arms and sensitive dualuse goods and technologies. 610  It is therefore on the basis of regular information exchange and debates that the scope for coordinating national control policies is assessed.

      The WA control list of dualuse goods and technologies has two annexes of sensitive items (referred to as tier 1 and 2) and a limited number of very sensitive items (subset tier 2). Both the dualuse goods and technologies and munitions lists are rather flexible since they are reviewed regularly to reflect technological and other changes. The Arrangement also contains very specific procedures for general information exchange, the exchange of information on dualuse goods and technology, and arms transfer. In the first case, indicative contents of the general information exchange are rather comprehensive and mainly covering acquitment activities, export policy, and projects of concern (see Table III.1.8).

Table III.1.8: Wassenaar Arrangement Major Indicative Contents of the General Information Exchange Procedure (Appendix 1)
Acquisition Activities Export Policy Projects of Concern
Rules and methods of acquisition;
Acquisition networks inside/outside the country;
Use of foreign expertise;
Sensitive end-users;
Acquisition patterns;
Export control policy;
Trade in critical goods and technology;
Description of the project;
Level of technology:
Present status of development;
Future plans;
Missing technology (development and production);
Companies/organisations involved,
including enduser(s);
Diversion activities;

Source: Compiled from information available in The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and DualUse Goods and Technologies, Wassenaar Arrangement, Vienna, Austria.

      Procedures for notifications are not so elaborate but particular attention seems to be attached to notification of denials for items in tier 2 and its subset of very sensitive items under control (see Table III.1.9). This appears to be logical since WA members are expected to assess emerging threats and behaviour patterns over time. This requires transparency of the reasons for export denial for given countries.

      Procedures for the exchange of information on arms, emerging trends in weapons programmes, and the accumulation of particular weapons systems also have a set of criteria to be respected. This contains information to be exchanged every six months on deliveries of conventional arms to non-WA members. Member States have reached an agreement whereby initially this information should contain items in the categories of the UN Register of Conventional Arms. In practice, the information provided by WA members should also include (a) the quantity, (b) the name of the recipient State, and (c) details of model and type of weapons (see Table III.1.10). Some exception is however made on the category of missiles and missile launchers.

Table III.1.9: Wassenaar Arrangement Major Specific Information Exchange on DualUse Goods and Technologies (Appendix 2)
Denial Notifications
for Tier 1 Items*
Denial Notifications
for Tier 2 and its Subset
of Very Sensitive Items**
Notifications for Tier 2 Licenses/Transfers***
From (country)
Country of destination
Item number on the Control List
Short description
Number of licences denied
Number of Units (quantity)
Reason for denial
From (country)
Item number on the Control List
Short description
Number of Units (quantity)
Intermediate consignee(s) and/or agent(s): Name, Address, Country
Ultimate consignee(s) and/or enduser(s): Name, Address, Country
Stated enduse
Reason for the denial
Other relevant information
From (country)
Item number on the Control List
Short description
Number of units (quantity)
Destination (country)

      *The content of denial notifications for tier I will be based on, but not be limited to, the following indicative or illustrative list; **: Denial notifications for items in the second tier and its subset of very sensitive items will be on the basis of, but not be limited to, the following indicative or illustrative list; ***:The content of notifications for licenses/transfers in the second tier will be based on, but not be limited to, the following indicative or illustrative list

Source: Compiled from information available in The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and DualUse Goods and Technologies, Wassenaar Arrangement, Vienna, Austria.


      A detail list of specifications is also provided in the Initial Elements which ensures a common understanding of the items for which export is to be informed. This feature to the WA may in fact reinforce the idea of the UN Register and further stimulate countries to maintain a regular reporting practice with the UN initiative, which itself is a document calling for reporting on a voluntary basis. Consultations are under way to expand reporting requirements and to increase transparency of all items in the Initial element notification lists.

Table III.1.10: Wassenaar Arrangement Specific Information Exchange on Arms (Appendix 3)
Weapons Category Specifications
1. Battle Tanks Tracked or wheeled selfpropelled armoured fighting vehicles with high crosscountry mobile and a high level of selfprotection, weighing at least 16.5 metric tonnes unladen weight, with a high muzzle velocity direct fire main gun of at least 75 mm calibre.
II. Armoured combat vehicles Tracked, semitracked or wheeled selfpropelled vehicles, with armoured protection and crosscountry capability, either: 1. Designed and equipped to transport a squad of four or more infantrymen; or 2. Armed with an integral or organic weapon of at least 12.5 mm calibre or a missile launcher.
III. Large calibre artillery systems Guns, howitzers, artillery pieces combining the characteristics of a gun or a howitzer, mortars or multiplelaunch rocket systems, capable of engaging surface targets by delivering primarily indirect fire, with a calibre of 100 mm and above.
IV. Combat aircraft Fixedwing or variablegeometry wing aircraft designed, equipped or modified to engage targets by employing guided missiles, unguided rockets, bombs, guns, cannons or other weapons of destruction, including versions of these aircraft which perform specialised electronic warfare, suppression of air defence or reconnaissance missions. The term 'combat aircraft' does not include primary trainer aircraft, unless designed, equipped or modified as described above.
V. Attack helicopters Rotarywing aircraft designed, equipped or modified to engage targets by employing guided or unguided antiarmour, airtosurface, airtosubsurface or airtoair weapons, and equipped with an integrated firecontrol and aiming system for these weapons, including versions of these aircraft which perform specialised reconnaissance or electronic warfare missions.
VI. Warships Vessel or submarines armed and equipped for military use with a standard displacement of 750 metric tonnes or above, and those with a standard displacement of less than 750 metric tonnes equipped for launching missiles with a range of at least 25 km or torpedoes with a similar range.
VII. Missiles or missile systems Guided or unguided rockets, ballistic or cruise missiles capable of delivering a warhead or weapon of destruction to a range of at least 25 km and means designed or modified specifically for launching such missiles or rockets, if not covered by categories I to VI. This category: 1. also includes remotely piloted vehicles with the characteristics for missiles as defined above; 2. does not include groundtoair missiles.

Source: Compiled from information available in The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and DualUse Goods and Technologies, Wassenaar Arrangement, Vienna, Austria.

      Another different feature of the WA to its predecessor is that its membership is not limited to the countries which originally founded it. The Arrangement is open to any State that complies with a set of agreed criteria, for which admission of prospective adherents is based on consensus and depends, among others, on the following issues:

  • Whether it is a producer/exporter of arms or industrial equipment respectively;
  • Its nonproliferation policies and its appropriate national policies, including:
    • Adherence to nonproliferation policies, control lists and, where applicable, guidelines of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Missile Technology Control Regime and the Australia Group;
    • Adherence to the Nuclear NonProliferation Treaty, the Biological and Toxicological Weapons Convention, the Chemical Weapons Convention and (where applicable) START I, including the Lisbon Protocol; and
  • Its adherence to fully effective export controls. 611 

      Founded by 33 members drawing from former COCOM members, COCOM targeted countries, Scandinavian countries, Switzerland and Argentina (see Table III.1.11), the WA has not had any new adherents since its creation. Although the total number of its membership and the diversity of countries it includes is considerable, this Arrangement does not represent a significant part of the international community. In particular, it does not include other important producers of arms and dual-use goods and technologies, including in the space sector.

Table III.1.11: List of States Associated with the COCOM/Wassenaar Arrangements
State Relationship to COCOM Type of Wassenaar
Arrangement Association
Entry Period
the Czech Republic
the Netherlands
New Zealand
the Republic of Korea
the Russian Federation
the Slovak Republic
the United Kingdom
United States
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Co-founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Founding member
Co-founding member
Founding member
Founding member
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996 July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996
July 1996

      *= COCOM target as part of the former Soviet Union and/or Warsaw Treaty Organization.

Source: Compiled partially with information available in The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and DualUse Goods and Technologies, Wassenaar Arrangement, Vienna, Austria.

2. Zangger Committee

      After several years of negotiations, the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) was finally signed in 1968. The Treaty establishes basic multilateral norms of nuclear material and technology transfer which could eventually be used for the production of nuclear weapons. Despite this major international achievement, the Treaty, which did not come into force until 5 March 1970, contains some articles which left much room for discussion on how to interpret them. One such article concerned the issue of nuclear safeguards (Article III.1) for which the NPT attributed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to be in responsible under bilateral agreements with NPT Party States. One of the first works done by the IAEA upon the entry into force of the NPT was therefore to develop the so called "Model Agreement" which governs bilateral safeguards accords. 612 

      Article III. 2 contains another aspect of the NPT which needed a common interpretation. In 1971, a group of like-minded nuclear supplier States established the Zangger Committee in order to harmonize national policies for the interpretation of the export control provision contained in this article, stating that:

      not to provide (a) source or special fissionable material or (b) equipment or material especially designed or prepared for the processing, use, or production of special fissionable material, to any non-nuclear weapon State for Peaceful purposes, unless the source or special fissionable material shall be subject to the safeguards required by this Article.

      Therefore, the objectives of the Zangger Committee are defined as:

      To reach a common understanding on what constituted nuclear material, and equipment or material especially designed or prepared for the processing, use, or production of special fissionable material; and

      To consider procedures in relation to exports of nuclear materials and certain categories of equipment and material in the light of the commitment of States pursuant to Article III.2 of the NPT with a view of establishing a common understanding as to the way in which each State would interpret and implement this commitment. 613 

      By 1974, the Committee had announced agreement on what became known as the "Trigger List", the first version of a list that contains items subject to specific safeguard controls under Article III.2.This List has evolved considerably since it was first published, both by increasing the number of items in the List and by clarifying some of the items by introducing more detailed explanations of their definitions. 614  (For the latest version of the "Trigger List", see Annex A) However, the basic rationale of the "Trigger List" has remained the same and summarized as including:

      Source and special fissionable material;

      Facilities and equipment for reactors, fuel fabrication, reprocessing, enrichment, and heavy water production; and

      Non-nuclear materials designed for nuclear use, namely nuclear-grade graphite and heavy water. 615 

      Yet, developing a common understanding of the wordings in the NPT was not an easy task. Indeed, in the early 1970s, an important issue in the Zangger Committee debates and which attracted much attention by the international community was the Committee's understanding of the definition of "safeguards" in Article III.1, which need to be agreed upon. In addition, there was also agreements reached on what to control, and another agreement among Committee members on procedural steps to export nuclear material. It could also be made after supplier States:

      Require peaceful end-use assurances;

      Satisfy itself that IAEA safeguards will be applied to the relevant nuclear material; and

      Obtain assurances that the item will not be exported to a non-NPT non-nuclear weapon State unless the receiving State accepts safeguards on the item. 616 

      It is on the basis of this requirements that identical unilateral declarations are made by Zangger Committee member States, announcing national legislation controls and informing the IAEA of new decisions on nuclear transfers. It is important to emphasize, however, that as in the case of the other ad hoc informal arrangements, the Zangger Committee does not require member States sign any binding agreement. In consequence, most of the control regime arrangements in the Zangger Committee takes place in informal gathering: helping to (a) find common views among major nuclear suppliers and other States on essential issues related to the access of military-grade material, equipment and technology and (b) form internationally recognized norms (even if not universal in character) on nuclear technology transfers.

Table III.1.12: List of States Adhering to the Zangger Committee and Related Agreement

Zangger Committee Non-Proliferation Treaty
  Association EntryYear Signature Deposit*
Czech Republic
European Union
Republic of Korea
Russian Federation
Slovak Republic
South Africa
United Kingdom
United States
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership

      *= Instruments of ratification, accession, or succession; **= Part of the former Czechoslovakia; **= No action.

      The Committee meets in May and October every year in Vienna and operates on the basis of consensus and confidentiality. At present, over 30 States are member of the Zangger Committee, (see Table III.1.12). A significant addition to the Committee was France, who joined it only in the early 1990s.

3. Nuclear Supplier Group

      The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), originally referred to as the "London Club", is another important arrangement to be mentioned in this discussion. The Group was created in 1974, reportedly as a consequence of a suspected Indian nuclear explosion, which generated a feeling among certain States that the mechanisms put into place to avert the access to nuclear explosion for military purposes were not efficient enough to fulfil that goal. As a complement to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and the Zangger Committee, the NSG took upon the task of building on these two initiatives and tightening the restrictions to "go nuclear" in military terms.

      One essential way for the NSG to tighten international regulations was via the observance of common guidelines between member States, which was subject of discussion between 1976 and 1977. 617  A first version of the "Guidelines on Nuclear Transfers" is described to have been a simple expansion of the Zangger Committee "Trigger List", to which it added notably the following items:

  • heavy water production items;
  • requirement for a recipient's assurances of non-explosive use;
  • IAEA safeguards;
  • control on retransfer; and
  • covered nuclear transfers to any non-nuclear weapon State. 618 

      NSG guidelines were applied on the national level and the Group reportedly did not meet between 1978 and 1991. After the resumption of meetings in 1991, the Group agreed on additional constraints that include guidelines for the transfer of nuclear-related dual-use equipment, material, and related technology, which became effective on 1 January 1993 (see Table III.1.13). 619  An agreement was also reached to prohibit the export of nuclear material, components and equipment to any non-nuclear weapon country, provided that the recipient country has full-scope safeguards agreement with the IAEA. 620 

      An important goal of the NSG is to persuade Member States to integrate guidelines in their national body of law, but also adopted as national laws of emerging suppliers of material under control. 621  In this connection, several appeals were made in the early 1990s to States of the former Soviet Union to accede to the NPT in the capacity of non-nuclear weapon States. Such an adherence would imply that these States would be under full scope IAEA safeguards.

Table III.1.13: NSG Memorandum of Understanding on Guidelines for Transfers of Nuclear-Related Dual-Use Equipment, Material and Related Technology and its accompanying Annex
The Governments subscribing to this Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) (hereinafter referred to as 'Subscribing Governments') intend to implement the Guidelines for Transfers of NuclearRelated DualUse Equipment, Material and Related Technology and its accompanying Annex in accordance with their national legislation and relevant international commitments in the following manner:
1. The aforementioned Guidelines will be applied to each transfer of any item in the Annex. However, in the case of transfers to destinations within the jurisdiction or control of Subscribing Governments, it is a matter for the discretion of a Subscribing Government to determine the expedited export licensing measures to apply and whether to apply paragraph 5 of the Guidelines.Further, in the case of transfers to destinations within the jurisdiction or control of other Governments agreed upon by Subscribing Governments through consultations:(i) it is a matter for the discretion or a Subscribing Government to determine the particular export licensing measures to apply consistent with obtaining the information and, as appropriate, the assurance required by paragraph 5 of the Guidelines; and(ii) paragraph 6 of the Guidelines may be implemented by a requirement that the recipient notify the supplier sufficiently in advance of a retransfer to a third country of any equipment, material, or related technology, identified in the Annex, or any replica thereof, to permit the supplier to communicate its views, as appropriate.
2. The Government should consult with other Subscribing Governments through regular channels and through the convening of at least one annual meeting. These consultations should address such matters as:(a) Information exchanges, as appropriate:(i) in pursuit of the Basic Principle and paragraphs 4 and 5 of the Guidelines;(ii) concerning decisions by Subscribing Governments not to authorize transfers of equipment, material or related technology;(iii) on measures taken to implement the Guidelines; and(iv) on proposed and authorized transfers, on a voluntary basis;(b) Additional measures, as referred to in paragraph 7 or the Guidelines, as appropriate.(c) Updating the Annex, as necessary.

3. In the event that one or more Subscribing Governments believes that there has been a serious violation of supplierrecipient understandings resulting from the application of the Guidelines, Subscribing Governments, as appropriate, should consult promptly through regular channels to discuss appropriate responses.
4. (a) The Government should provide prompt notification to other Subscribing Governments of a decision it has made pursuant to the Guidelines not to authorize a transfer of equipment, material, or related technology identified in the Annex.(b) The Government should not authorize a transfer of equipment, material, or related technology identified in the Annex which is essentially identical to a transfer which was not authorized by another Subscribing Government where this decision was notified pursuant to subparagraph (a), without consulting the Subscribing Government which provided the notice. After such consultations, the Government, in the event of its authorization of the transfer, should notify other Subscribing Governments of its authorization. Thereafter the restriction on transfers set forth in the first sentence of this subparagraph will no longer apply.(c) Three years after the issuance of a notification of nonauthorization, the Government which provided the notice should review the basis for that decision and advise the other Subscribing Governments of its conclusions through regular channels. If the conclusion is to confirm that the basis for the decision still obtains, the procedure outlined above in subparagraph 4 (b) should apply once more. The conclusions called for in this subparagraph should also be reviewed at the meetings to be held pursuant to paragraph 2 above
5. The Government should not take commercial advantage of information exchanged under this MOU and should strictly protect the commercial confidentiality of such information.
6. (a) Those governments that exchange notes of acceptance of this MOU and both the Guidelines and the Annex on [DATE TO BE DETERMINED IN WARSAW MEETING] are thereafter Subscribing Governments(b) Subsequently, upon the unanimous consent of all existing Subscribing Governments, any other government becomes a Subscribing Government based on an exchange of notes of acceptance of this MOU and both the Guidelines and the Annex with all existing Subscribing Governments.
7. Any changes to the Guidelines, Annex, or the MOU require the unanimous consent of the Subscribing Governments.

      The NSG also pursued a policy of support to the IAEA. A particular effort was made to improve the work of the Agency, notably by the "...enhancing reporting of nuclear material, relevant equipment and certain non-nuclear material transfer..." within the Agency. 622  Information exchange became a very important theme in the work of the Group in the following years, 623  and a "Point of Contact" was established via the Japanese Mission to the IAEA in Vienna to ensure the flow of information among Group members and to provide organizational services for the dual-use export control regime. 624 

      Additionally, while the NSG showed interest in supporting peaceful uses of nuclear energy, the Group also recognized "...the need to ensure that supplier cooperation does not contribute directly or indirectly to nuclear proliferation". 625  Moreover, the NSG also paid much attention to the possibility that "...indirect supply through third country does not..." hamper non-proliferation policy.

      Additional tightening of this regime was accepted in 1993 when Group members accepted an amendment to the "...Guidelines that requires IAEA safeguards on all current and future activities (2) as a condition for any significant, new supply commitments to non-nuclear weapon States." 626  The move from an agreement to limit exports of certain items to a requirement for full-scale safeguards is an important one both in substance and in respect to the nature of informal ad hoc arrangements: it clearly shows the changing nature of the regime. This trend is also noticed in the concluding provision of the 1992 Guidelines which states that "[a]ny changes to the Guidelines, Annex, or the MOU require the unanimous consent of the Subscribing Governments." These forms of engagements attest to the obligatory nature of commitments, which is quite different from the less binding formula of other informal arrangements.

      1994 and 1995 were important years for additional changes to the NSG. Agreement was reached in the 1994 Madrid meeting on a number of key areas, particularly in (a) strengthening retransfer provisions in the Guidelines, (b) increasing the system of "working groups" (e.g., on technical and other matters), and (c) boosting the support to increase transparency of the work undertaken by the Group via the practice of briefing and conducting special regional seminars to non-Group members. 627  More comprehensive versions of the Guidelines were published in October 1995 as IAEA Information Circular. Part 1 of the Guidelines covers export of nuclear material, equipment and technology (see Annex B) And Part 2 deals with the transfer of nuclear-related dual-use equipment, material and related technology (see Annex C): 628  all NSG members are said to have adhered to theses Guidelines. 629 

      But it was the 1995 NPT Review and Extension Conference that seems to have had the greatest impact in the work of the Group. Notably, with respect to the formulated Principles 16 and 17 of the Conference which refer to the need to (a) provide preferential treatment to non-nuclear weapon States party to the NPT, and (b) promote transparency in nuclear related export controls within the framework of dialogue and cooperation. In this regard, the NSG established a working group 630  on transparency which enumerated the following as being points of discussion whereby a dialogue should be established:

  • advance transparency and understanding of the NSG's objectives and practices through more effective exchange of views and additional information.
    • address concerns that the NSG acts as a club of developed countries to restrict access to advanced technology. This is emphatically not the objective of the NSG and would be contrary to NPT obligations as well as a range of undertakings on peaceful nuclear cooperation made most recently at the 1995 NPTREC.
  • demonstrate that the NSG is there to support NPT and Nuclear Weapon Free Zone (NWFZ) treaty objectives of preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons, and to facilitate cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.
  • promote cooperation with interested states who wish to develop further their national export licensing measures in accordance with their own policies and practices. 631 

      This dialogue is seen as part of "...ongoing outreach activities and other measures undertaken by the Group"... to improve non-member States knowledge of NSG activities, increase transparency and openness. Other measures include the decision by the Group to host the 1997 international seminar on the "Role of Export Controls in Nuclear Nonproliferation", and the coordination with the Zangger Committee in order to further clarify and strengthen "...its Trigger List of nuclear items with respect to nuclear reactors, fuel fabrication facilities and non-nuclear material." 632 

      Increase in the NSG's membership was also a relevant issue in this informal arrangement. NSG membership, which started with only 7 States in 1974, has increased five-fold in about 25 years. While it had doubled by 1977, most of the increase has occurred as late as in the 1990s. In addition, particular effort was also made to include Sates in different continents and with different levels of development. For example, Argentina and the Commission of the European Union attended the 1993 meeting as observers and the former adhered to the Guidelines then, but was accepted as a new member only in 1994. New Zealand and South Africa became members in 1995, while Brazil, the Republic of Korea, and the Ukraine become members the following year.

Table III.1.14: List of States Adhering to Nuclear Suppliers Group
State Type of Association Entry Year
Czech Republic
European Commission
Republic of Korea
New Zealand
Russian Federation
Slovak Republic
South Africa
United Kingdom
United States
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Original member
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Original member
Original member
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Original member
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Original member
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Full membership
Original member
Original member

4. Australia Group

      The Australia Group is another informal arrangement of a non-binding character. The Group was created by Australia in the early 1980s during the Iran/Iraq war, because of reports of violation of the 1925 Geneva Protocol banning the use in war of asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases, and of bacteriological methods of warfare. The creation of the Group was therefore argued to be necessary after "...reports in 1983 of large-scale chemical warfare in the Gulf, and a desire that the chemical industry was not even indirectly involved in chemical weapons manufacture". 633  A United Nations special mission confirmed in 1994 the use of CWs in the war that is said to have given more impetus for the Australia Group to pursue its efforts to assess (a) how to prevent the diversion of Chemical feedstocks to the manufacture of Chemical Weapons (CWs) and (b) how to avoid the inadvertent involvement of the civilian industry in CWs programmes.

      The first official meeting of the Group is reported to have taken place in June 1985 at Brussel. One of the first steps taken by participating countries was to introduce control measures over the manufacturing and trade of national chemical agents which could be used for the production of CWs. Additionally, the Group countries also made efforts to coordinate and harmonize export policies and administrative procedures both in scope and application. A number of guidelines orient the national policy of Australia Group Members, notably efforts to:

  1. develop controls which do not hamper legitimate civil-use chemicals;
  2. promote greater awareness of the potential pitfalls involved in the trading of chemicals;
  3. make any effort to access CWs ingredients more difficult, more time-consuming, and more costly; 634 

      The voluntary nature of the Group, its emphasis on the exchange of information and discussions on the improvement of national legislation makes this partnership a cost-effective and efficient means to coordinate non-proliferation policies. The group has no charter. All decisions are made by consensus.

      As of 1985, a "Warning List" of CWs chemicals was created. Later the "Warning List" also included not only dual-use CWs precursors, but also other chemicals and CWs related equipment. This list is distributed among Group partners so as to help "...the industry to report on any suspicious transactions". 635  In the same year, Group partners also initially agreed on a "Core List" of five chemicals and later on a more expanded version, the so called "Core List of Chemicals (see Annex D), was defined as being "...particular relevant to existing chemical weapons programmes", and where chemicals therein are controlled. 636 

      A second list, referred to as the "List of Further Chemicals", was also agreed upon. It involves chemicals which could be diverted to the manufacturing of "highly toxic" CWs agents (see Annex E): export of chemicals in this list is reportedly not necessarily controlled, but used as Government guidance in overseeing national chemical industries. Over 54 CWs precursors are under control. The Group also exercises control over the export of CWs dual-use facilities and equipment (see Annex F).

      It was not until 1989 that the Australia Group started discussing biological weapons (BWs) in its deliberations and one year later policy discussions were made to incorporate CWs into the work of the Groups. In addition to chemical agent controls, the Group countries also agreed in a December 1992 meeting to extend export control of CW precursors to organisms, toxins, as well as dual-use equipment which could be employed in the production of biological weapons (see Annex G). 637  Agreement was also reached on a "...framework paper for effective licensing arrangements for CBW export controls". 638  By 1993, major policy directions were made on subsidiary experts' meetings and the development of a package of comprehensive export controls on (a) certain biological agents (microorganisms) and toxins, and (b) related dual-use biological manufacturing equipment. In addition, licensing, customs authorities, and other law enforcement officials were put together to discuss ways to implement CBW export controls. 639 

      As in the case of the COCOM/WA, the Zangger Committee, and the NSG the Australia Group also pushed for changes further to improve the effectiveness of their national expert control systems. Among such changes is the development and agreement of rules preventing non-partner reexports. There is also an agreement not to sell such commodities to a country which has been denied such sales by another Group partner for non-proliferation reasons. In this connection, the work of Australia Group also started to emphasise end-user undertakings as an important aspect of control mechanisms to pay attention to.

      The basic reason for the efforts pursued in the Australia Group was clearly the absence of a comprehensive control regime banning and verifying the production of CWs. Hence the unquestionable support expressed by the Group to the negotiations leading to the completion of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC ). In fact, the Group's consultations and export control regimes were considered to be "...practical interim measures to support the Convention in anticipation of its conclusion and entry into force". 640  However, nothing indicated then or at present that the Group would end its work with the existence of the CWC. On the contrary, in 1992, prior to the signing of the Convention on January 1993 in Paris, a statement made on behalf of the Australia Group at the Conference on Disarmament (CD) in Geneva indicated that the Group would:

...undertake to review, in the light of the implementation of the Convention, the measures that they take to prevent the spread of chemical substances and equipment for purposes contrary to the objectives of the Convention, with the aim of removing such measures for the benefit of States Parties to the Convention acting in full compliance with their obligations under the Convention. 641 

      This statement shows the perceived need on the part of Group partners to maintain controls until there is no more danger of CWs proliferation. In addition, the Group also held the view that, in connection to Article XI. 2. (e) of the CWC which requires State Parties to review their chemical trade regulations, "...there is a continuing role for the Australia Group in the harmonisation of national non-proliferation controls over CBW-related materials". 642  All Group partners have signed and ratified the CWC.

      Two important changes occurred in 1992. One was the implementation of an active policy to establish dialogues with non-participating States, and the other was the opening of Group's participation to other new partners, particularly chemical and biological producing, exporting, and transshipping States. 643 

Table III.1.15: Australia Group and Related Agreements Partner States/Institutions

Chemical Weapons Convention Biological Weapons
  Entry Year Signature Deposit* Signature Deposit*
Czech Republic
E. Commission
New Zealand
Republic of Korea
Slovak Republic
United Kingdom
United States





















      *= Instruments of ratification, accession, or succession; **= Part of the former Czechoslovakia; **= No action.

      The policy of an evolving relationship with non-participating countries is aimed at introducing more transparency and data exchange with these States. To this end, bilateral consultations between Group partners and non-participating countries started since early1986 where the former is encouraged to adopt similar national export control regimes. 644  In addition, seminars on the issue of CBWs proliferation have been organized by different Group countries (London--1990, Paris--1991, Budapest--1992, Tokyo--1993, Oslo--1993, Buenos Aires--1994, Tokyo--1996, and Bucharest--1996) with the participation of non-partner countries. The London seminar, for example, was devoted to the Soviet and Eastern European region. However, it was not until 1993 that Group partners established the so called "outreach Programme" to provide both Group activities transparency and to promote export controls as nonproliferation tools. 645 

      The Group was originally formed by 15 countries consisting mostly of Australia, European countries--including Scandinavian countries, Japan, New Zealand, and the United States, as well as the European Commission as an observer (see Table III.1.15). In 1991, the Australia Group had already twenty partners, and one decade after its creation, the Group counted 25 partners growing quickly after the end of the Cold War both by incorporating East European countries and countries from other continents such as Latin America. Argentina and Hungary applied for partnership in 1992, adhering to it in the following year along with Iceland. Other partners with significant chemical and biological industries are for example Poland (1994) and the Republic of Korea (1996). In 1999, the Australia Group consists of 30 partners and one observer institution and reports indicate a revolutionary change is under discussion with the possible entry of 60 new partners in the Group. 646 

      Of particular importance would be the participation in the Group of countries such as China, India and the Russian Federation and others who have very significant industries in the area of the Australia Group.

5. Missile Technology Control Regime

      Unlike the objectives of COCOM, the April 1987 Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) agreement is not directed towards specific countries, but is based on the control of the transfer of specific rocketry technologies. As such, the MTCR has been argued to be the most stringent barrier to the acquiring of outer space capabilities by EmSC States. This is so despite the fact that its basic objectives are not designed to hinder national programmes and international cooperation in this field. The MTCR was originally organized in 1983 by France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States, and started in 1987 with the participation of these five countries and Canada and Japan. As in the cases of COCOM or the WA, the MTCR is not a formal agreement, but consists of guidelines which include an annexed list of technologies of which the transfer are subject to control. The MTCR is officially referred to as:

...an informal and voluntary association of countries which share the goals of non-proliferation of unmanned delivery systems for weapons of mass des truction and which seek to coordinate national export licensing efforts aimed at preventing their proliferation. 647 

      Restrictions comprise two categories of technologies. 648  In the Category I, controls apply to complete systems of rockets (ballistic missiles, space launch vehicles, and sounding rockets). In addition, complete subsystems of rocket stages, solid- or liquid-fuel rocket engines, guidance sets, and thrust vector controls, firing mechanisms and a hand full of other subsystems, as well as technology of design and production facilities, are subject to control. Controls were originally applicable to unmanned capability to deliver a 500kg payload to an altitude of 300km for both complete systems and subsystems.

      Restrictions in Category II include propulsion components, propellants and constituents, flight instrument and inertial navigation, launch and ground support equipment and facilities. Revisions made on the Annex until the late 1990s were largely limited to technical definitions of terms or technical parameters. However, new guidelines were agreed upon, mostly triggered by the 1991 coalition forces war against Iraq.

      In its 1992 annual meeting at Oslo, Norway, MTCR guidelines were expanded to the transfer of '...any missiles, regardless of their payload or range which are judged to be intended to carry any weapon of mass destruction, not just nuclear weapons,...' 649  It was argued necessary to increase the range of vehicle technologies under control (chemical and biological weapons-capable delivery-vehicles), but also to allow more flexibility for controls and to introduce the notion of controlling 'intentions'. This modification were coupled with further changes related to the list of goods under control in the MTCR Annex. 650  Reportedly, the new changes would by then already have covered Unmanned Air- Vehicle (UAV) systems (including cruise missile systems, target and reconnaissance drones) with a range of 300km and capable of carrying less than 500kg weapons payload, as well as their production facilities and major subsystems; including rockt stages, reentry vehicles, rocket engines, guidance systems and warhead mechanisms.

      By 1993, the proposals for different changes in the policy of the Regime showed a strong determination to undertake a comprehensive review of the MTCR and, MTCR Partner States decided to further strengthen the Regime in various areas and by different means as follows:

  1. Improve coordination of export controls;
  2. Build mutual confidence between Partners;
  3. Develop a more complex item-contolled list to boost control efforts;
  4. Improve the image of the Regime as a non-discriminatory association;
  5. Open-up to non-traditional Partners; and
  6. Develop a more active missile proliferation prevention approach, notably by establishing a continues dialogue with non-MTCR Partners.

      On January 1993, new Guidelines replaced those in force since 1987 (see Table III.1.16) and the Equipment and Technology Annex (see Annex H) are more comprehensive than their predecessors. In addition, they extended the responsibility of the recipient State in a more coherent way, which was enforced by a greater willingness of transparency as evident in entry 3. of the evaluation of transfer applications for Annex items.

      Another initiative to improve the MTCR was to increase the scope of partnership from a handful of countries to include both technology producer and recipient countries. Progressively, a number of other countries declared either to abide by the rules established under the MTCR or to generally support its objectives. 651  The debate on full partnership turned quickly to Israel, China, Russia and the DPRK among the major suppliers of missiles or technologies. On March 1992, China had already announced its commitment to abide by the MTCR guidelines and parameters, but has not joined the Regime yet as full partner. 652  Israel made commitments to observe MTCR guidelines by 1993, but did not join the Regime. 653  The Russian Federation had also agreed to "...follow 'closely' the MTCR beginning November 1, 1993'. 654 

      Among the new partners were Argentina, Iceland, and Hungary who joined the Regime in 1993; South Africa and Russia formally joined the MTCR in 1995; and subsequently Brazil and Turkey (both in 1996).Ukraine undertook talks with MTCR partners (e.g., U.S.) as of 1995 to facilitate its partnership, but joined the Regime only in 1998, with the Czech Republic and Poland. In 1996, the U.S. was reportedly also working closely with the Republic of Korea in view of assisting its condition to meet partnership; and also discussed with the PDRK of the relevance of restraining missile exports for the development

Table III.1.16:MTCR Guidelines for the Transfer of Sensitive MissileRelevant Technologies
1. Purpose
a. To limit the risks of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (i.e. nuclear, chemical and biological weapons), by controlling transfers that could make a contribution to delivery systems (other than manned aircraft) for such weapons;b. The Guidelines are not designed to impede national space programs or international cooperation in such programs as long as such programs could not contribute to delivery systems for weapons of mass destruction; andc. These Guidelines, including the attached Annex, form the basis for controlling transfers to any destination beyond the Government's jurisdiction or control of all delivery systems (other than manned aircraft) capable of delivering weapons of mass destruction, and of equipment and technology relevant to missiles whose performance in terms of payload and range exceeds stated parameters. Restraint will be exercised in the consideration of all transfers of items contained within the Annex and all such transfers will be considered on a casebycase basis. The Government will implement the Guidelines in accordance with national legislation.
2. The Annex consists of two categories of items including equipment and technology
i. Category I items, all of which are in Annex Items 1 and 2, are those items of greatest sensitivity.ii. If a Category I item is included in a system, that system will also be considered a Category I item, except when the incorporated item cannot be separated, removed or duplicated.iii. Particular restraint will be exercised in the consideration of Category I transfers regardless of their purpose, and there will be a strong presumption to deny such transfers.iv. Particular restraint will also be exercised in consideration of transfers of any items in the Annex, or of any missiles (whether or not in the Annex), if the Government judges, on the basis of all available, persuasive information, evaluated according to factors including those in paragraph 3, that they are intended to be used for the delivery of weapons of mass destruction, and there will be a strong presumption to deny such transfers.v. Until further notice, the transfer of Category I production facilities will not be authorized. The transfer of other Category I items will be authorized only on rare occasions and where the Government (A) obtains binding governmenttogovernment undertakings embodying the assurances from the recipient government called for in paragraph 5 of these Guidelines and (B) assumes responsibility for taking all steps necessary to ensure that the item is put only to its stated enduse.vi. It is understood that the decision to transfer remains the sole and sovereign judgment of the [country name] Government.

3. In the evaluation of transfer applications for Annex items, the following factors will be taken into account:
a. Concerns about the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction;b. The capabilities and objectives of the missile and space programs of the recipient state;c. The significance of the transfer in terms of the potential development of delivery systems(other than manned aircraft) for weapons of mass destruction;d. The assessment of the enduse of the transfers, including the relevant assurances of therecipient states referred to in subparagraphs 5.a and 5.b below; and e. The applicability of relevant multilateral agreements.
4. The transfer of design and production technology directly associated with any items in the Annex will be subject to as great a degree of scrutiny and control as will the equipment itself, to the extent permitted by national legislation.
5. Where the transfer could contribute to a delivery system for weapons of mass destruction, the Government will authorize transfers of items in the Annex only on receipt of appropriate assurances from the government of the recipient state that:
a. The items will be used only for the purpose stated and that such use will not be modifiednor the items modified or replicated without the prior consent of the [supplier]government.b. Neither the items nor replicas nor derivatives thereof will be retransferred without theconsent of the [supplier] Government.
6. In furtherance of the effective operation of the Guidelines, the [supplier] Government will, as necessary and appropriate, exchange relevant information with other governments applying the same Guidelines.
7. The adherence of all States to these Guidelines in the interest of international peace and security would be welcome.

      Note: These Guidelines came into effect on 7 January 1993 and replaced those adopted on 16 April 1987

Source: "Missile Technology Control Regime: Guidelines for Sensitive Missile-Relevant Transfers", 7 January, 1993.

      of their bilateral relations. By November 1998, 34 countries had associated themselves in one capacity or another with the MTCR--32 as full partners and 2 which pledged to abide by the Regime Guidelines (see Table III.1.17).

      Admission of a new Partner is made by consensus rule and a number of requirements are considered in the evaluation of the State candidate. Notably the following:

  1. whether a prospective new member would strengthen international non-proliferation efforts;
  2. demonstrates a sustained and sustainable commitment to non-proliferation;
  3. has a legally based effective export control system that puts into effect the MTCR Guidelines and procedures; and
  4. administers and enforces such controls effectively. 655 

      Coupled with these requirements are visits to capitals by special teams including representatives from four MTCR Partner States and other bilateral meetings. Once accepted, the new Partner can participate in the annual plenary Meeting which is chaired on a rotational basis among Partner States, although Paris was assigned as MTCR Point of Contact (POC) where intersessional consultations take place monthly.

      Another decision made by MTCR Partners was to make some significant changes in the Regime's co-ordination of export controls. For example, among the major questions was that of clarifying if transfer applications are considered under the same light, appreciated with the same security concerns, and treated in the same manner by the different potential suppliers. Political and technical issues related to misunderstanding and misinterpretation of MTCR provisions between partner countries have been a serious problem in the past. China and Russia, which had then made commitments to observe the regime's guidelines, are two cases in point.

      For example, prompted by U.S. sanctions imposed on China in August 1993 for Chinese transfer to Pakistan of items related to the Chinese M-11 missile which is under Category II of the MTCR Annex, U.S./Chinese negotiations began on September 1994 in view of reaching the same level of understanding on MTCR issues. 656  A Joint China/U.S. Statement signed on October 1994 stated that "...the two countries agreed to work together to promote missile nonproliferation through a step-by-step approach to resolve differences over missile exports". 657  In addition, the 1994 statement also contained four important agreements:

  1. a reaffirmation of China's 1992 commitment to observe MTCR Guidelines and parameters;
  2. a Chinese pledge not to export ground-to-ground MTCR-class missiles;
  3. an agreement by China that missiles are judged to be MTCR-class based on their inherent capability; and
  4. an agreement by China to hold in-depth discussions with the U.S. on the MTCR and to promote eventual Chinese MTCR partnership. 658 

      In the statement, the U.S. committed to lift sanctions against China and not against Pakistan, although it offered Pakistan to engage in the same type of agreement with the U.S. 659  The Chinese agreement not to "...export ground-to-ground missiles featuring the primary parameters of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR)--that is, inherently capable of reaching a range of at least 300 km with a payload of at least 500 kg", is interpreted by the U.S. as representing "...a global ban on exports, and goes beyond the requirements set forth in the MTCR, which calls for a 'strong presumption of denial' for such missile exports". 660  Moreover, the Chinese acceptance of the U.S. position of the definition of the term inherent capability could also seen as a significant achievement to broaden the scope of restrictions, since it argues that "...the missile would be included in the ban if it could generate sufficient energy to deliver a 500 kg payload at least 300 km, regardless of its demonstrated or advertised combination of range and payload". 661 

      This type of negotiation has led to two U.S./Russian agreements describing in precise terms what both countries intend to do with respect to the MTCR issue and, in particular, Russian exports of related technologies. The first agreement was the document where Russia had pledged to follow the MTCR, 662  and the second one was a more comprehensive instrument, the U.S.-Russian Missile Export Controls Agreement or the Memorandum of Understanding on MTCR, which was signed addressing mutual understanding of the Regime's guidelines. 663 

Table III.1.17: List of States Adhering to MTCR Guidelines
State Type of Association Entry Year
the Czech Republic
New Zealand
Russian Federation
South Africa
United Kingdom
United States
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Founding partner
Full partnership
Pledged abidance
Full partnership
Full partnership
Original/Founding partner
Original/Founding partner
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Pledged observance
Original/Founding partner
Founding partner
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Full partnership
Original/Founding partner
Original/Founding partner

      Additional changes took place in December 1993 at Interlaken, Switzerland. The then 25 MTCR partners had decided to introduce a new element in their missile control arrangement. It consists of approaching non-MTCR partners in view of dissuading potential missile possessor States against possession, although this new approach was not clearly defined then and was expected to be fine-tuned in the October 1994 meeting in Sweden. 664  This approach was clarified later as MTCR Partner's recognized different meetings (e.g., 1996) that it was necessary to strengthen the Regime through cooperation with countries outside the of it, in order to prevent more effectively the proliferation of missiles. In this connection, there was agreement that "...it was very important to control the transshipment of missile technology without disrupting legitimate trade". This type of reasoning became a policy aimed at increasing MTCR Partners' efforts to promote openness and transparency through further dialogue with countries outside the Regime. 665  It is in the background of this new policy that MTCR Partners organized several workshops with the participation of several non-Partners MTCR States (such as Cyprus, Hong Kong, Jordan, Malta, The Republic of Korea, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates).

  1. United States of America--1996: Transshipment issues and how to impede proliferation misuse of transshipment;
  2. United Kingdom--1997, two seminars: Legal authority to control transshipment of missile goods and technologies;
  3. Switzerland--1997: Licencing and enforcement aspects of transshipment;
  4. Japan--1997: Asian export controls. 666 

      In addition, at the 1997 Tokyo Plenary meeting, MTCR Partners expressed concern about continued efforts to acquire or development BMs in some parts of Asia and the Middle East. This led them to a renewal of their "...commitment to further strengthening effectiveness of their export controls and enhanced cooperation to that end".. 667  Besides an agreement to continue to focus on the implications of BM proliferation, they also renewed the continuation of the policy "...to call for restraint and vigilance in missile-related exports" in their bilateral discussions with non-MTCR Partners. These issues continue to dominate the agenda of Plenary Meetings few other areas of attention (e.g., the flight test of a Pakistani missile in early 1998) are expected to be discussed in next meeting at Budapest, Hungary, during the autumn of 1998.

6. Other Initiatives

      The 1991 Gulf conflict between Iraq and the US-led coalition of States had several implications to international security. This in particular with respect to the way the international community dealt with issues of conventional armaments build-up, access to weapons of mass destruction, and ballistic missile systems. It is in this context that selected initiatives undertaken since the early 1990s to control the transfer of military and dual-use equipment and technologies are relevant to the debate on outer space technologies. Since that time, several initiatives from a variety of sources have contributed to the strengthening of selective control regimes and bilateral and multilateral agreements.

      Perhaps the initiative with the greatest impact was taken by President George Bush on 19 May 1991. He announced a series of proposals aimed at curbing the access to nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons, and ballistic missiles in the Middle East, as well as restraining what was referred to as "destabilizing conventional arms build-ups". 668  The essence of the Bush initiative was based on actions to be undertaken by both suppliers and recipient States. The five major suppliers of conventional arms to the Middle East in the past decade (which was acknowledged to be the UN Security-Council permanent members--China, France, the United Kingdom, the United Stated and the then Soviet Union--the P5) were to meet to establish guidelines on both conventional and mass destruction weapons, their delivery vehicles and technologies.

      The initiative contemplated restraints from arms suppliers to:

  • commit to observe a general code of responsible arms transfers;
  • avoid destabilizing transfers;
  • establish effective domestic export controls on the enduse of arms or other items to be transferred.

      The guidelines will include a mechanism for consultations among suppliers, who would:

  • notify one another in advance of certain arms sales;
  • meet regularly to consult on arms transfers;
  • consult on an ad hoc basis if a supplier believed guidelines were not being observed; and
  • provide one another with an annual report on transfers. 669 

      As illustrated in Table III.1.18, the Bush initiative explicitly proposes how to address the issue of surface-to-surface missile, which he proposed that the region would become a missile-free-zone. A number of other proposals were made aimed at strengthening existing and planned international agreements. The Bush initiative was therefore an expression of a sense of responsibility which the P5 claimed to have so as to address the situation in the Middle East, but also to act in a more global level in view of preventing the same situation from arising elsewhere in the future.

      The first meeting of the P5 members took place in July 1991 at Paris, France, where the P5 members confirmed their engagement on the national level not to "...transfer conventional weapons in circumstances which would undermine stability". 670  On the international level, one of the key policy directions agreed in Paris was the support to introduce measures of increased transparency in conventional arms transfer, which latter greatly contributed to the adoption of the United Nations Arms Register.

Table III.1.18: 1991 President Bush's Middle East Arms Control Initiative
* A freeze on the acquisition, production, and testing of surfacetosurface missiles by states in the region with a view to the ultimate elimination of such missiles from their arsenals; and* Suppliers would also step up efforts to coordinate export licensing for equipment, technology and services that could be used to manufacture surfacetosurface missiles. Export licenses would be provided only for peaceful end uses.
Nuclear Weapons
The initiative builds on existing institutions and focuses on activities directly related to nuclear weapons capability. The initiative would:* Call on regional states to implement a verifiable ban on the production and acquisition of weaponsusable nuclear material (enriched uranium or separated plutonium);* Reiterate our call on all states in the region that have not already done so to accede to the Nonproliferation Treaty;* Reiterate our call to place all nuclear facilities in the region under International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards; and* Continue to support the eventual creation of a regional nuclear weaponfree zone.
Chemical Weapons
* The proposal will build on the President's recent initiative to achieve early completion of the global Chemical Weapons Convention;* The initiative calls for all states in the region to commit to becoming original parties to the convention; and* Given the history of possession and use of chemical weapons in the region, the initiative also calls for regional states to institute confidencebuilding measures now by engaging in presignature implementation of appropriate Chemical Weapons Convention provisions.
Biological Weapons
As with the approach to chemical weapon controls, the proposals build on an existing global approach. The initiative would:* Call for strengthening the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) through full implementation of existing BWC provisions and an improved mechanism for information exchange. These measures will be pursued at the fiveyear Review Conference of the BWC this September;* Urge regional states to adopt biological weapons confidence building measures; and* This initiative complements our continuing support for the continuation of the UN Security Council embargo against Arms Transfers to Iraq, as well as the efforts of the UN Special Commission ot eliminate Iraq's remaining capabilities to use or produce nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and the missiles to deliver them.

Source: adapted from"President George Bush Middle East Arms Control Initiative," Fact Sheet, The White House Press Secretary, 29 May, 1991.

      With respect to the proliferation of nuclear weapons, chemical and biological weapons, and missiles," the P5 members "...undertook to seek effective measures of nonproliferation and arms control in a fair, reasonable, comprehensive and balanced manner on a global as well as on a regional basis." P5 members pledged to contribute to this objective by developing and maintaining stringent national controls. Their goal was also to harmonise controls as much as possible by ensuring "...that weapons of massdestruction related equipments and materials are transferred for permitted purposes only and are not diverted." This statement was a reiteration of support by P5 members to the work undertaken the UNSCOM team. It also expressed their view on the essential elements of the Bush initiative, where P5 members agreed that the Middle East region needed to adopt a comprehensive program of arms control which included the following proposals from the American proposals:

  • A freeze and ultimate elimination of ground-to-ground missiles in the region;
  • Submission by all nations in the region of all their nuclear activities to IAEA safeguards;
  • A ban on the importation and production of nuclear weapons usable material; and
  • Agreement by all states in the region to undertake to becoming parties to the CW convention as soon as it is concluded in 1992.

      P5 members also expressed the intention to follow other proposals made in the Bush initiative. Some indicate that:

  • When considering under their national control procedures conventional weapons transfers, they will observe rules of restraint. They will develop agreed guidelines on this basis;
  • Taking into account the special situation of the Middle East as a primary area of tension, they will develop modalities of consultation and of information exchanges concerning arms transfers to this region as a matter of priority;
  • A group of experts will meet in September with a view to reaching agreement on this approach;
  • Another plenary meeting will be held in October in London; and
  • Further meetings will be held periodically to review these issues.

      The Bush proposal also recognised that a long term solution to this problem should include other suppliers of arms and technologies and that, with time, his initiative would have go beyond the scope of a five suppliers group. Hence, the matter was also taken for discussion within the framework of the G7 Group, where the Heads of State and Government of these States and the representatives of the European Community also expressed their concern about the "...threats to international security posed by the proliferation of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons and of associated missile delivery systems" in 1990 and 1991. 671  In their 1992 declaration on this matter, they stated their determination to deal with the issue of conventional arms transfer by applying the three principles of transparency, consultation and action, where:

  • The principle of transparency should be extended to international transfers of conventional weapons and associated military technology;
  • The principle of consultation should now be strengthened through the rapid implementation of recent initiatives for discussions among leading arms exporters with the aim of agreeing a common approach to the guidelines which are applied in the transfer of conventional weapons.
  • The principle of action requires all of us [G-7 Group of States] to prevent the building up of disproportionate arsenals. To that end all countries should refrain from arms transfers which would be destabilising or would exacerbate existing tensions. Special restraint should be exercised in the transfer of advanced technology weapons and in sales to countries and areas of particular concern. A special effort should be made to define sensitive items and production capacity for advanced weapons, to the transfer of which similar restraints could be applied.

      Determination was shown to strengthen and expand the nonproliferation regimes in the area of weapons of mass destruction. While much attention was devoted to development of NBC capabilities and new measures that could be adopted to improve export controls in arrangements such as the Nuclear Suppliers Group, support was also given to the work of the MTCR and its then new police of openness to new membership. At the same time, the G7 Group judged it necessary to mention expressly that the MTCR was not a regime which would hamper developments in outer space and other areas:

      The spread of missile delivery systems has added a new dimension of instability to international security in many regions of the world. As the founders of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), we welcome its extension to many other states in the last two years. We endorse the joint appeal issued at the Tokyo MTCR meeting in March 1991 for all countries to adopt these guidelines. These are not intended to inhibit cooperation in the use of space for peaceful and scientific purposes. 672 

Table III.1.19: P5 Interim Guidelines Related to Weapons of Mass Destruction
1. Not assist, directly or indirectly, in the development, acquisition, manufacture, testing, stockpiling, or deployment of nuclear weapons by any nonnuclearweapons state;2. Promptly notify the International Atomic Energy Agency of the export to a nonnuclear weapons state of any nuclear materials, equipment, or facilities and place them under IAEA safeguards;3. Exercise restraint in the transfer of sensitive nuclear facilities, technology and weaponsusable material, services or technology which could be used in the manufacture of nuclearweaponsuseable material except when satisfied that such exports would not contribute to the development or acquisition of nuclear weapons or to any nuclear activity not subject to safeguards;4. Not assist, directly or indirectly, in the development, acquisition, manufacture, testing, stockpiling, or deployment of chemical weapons by any recipient whatever;5. Not export equipment, material, services or technology which could be used in the manufacture of chemical weapons except when satisfied, for example, by recipient country guarantees or confirmation by the recipient, that such exports would not contribute to the development or acquisition of chemical weapons;6. Strictly abide by the provision of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction, undertake to maintain and support efforts for enhancing the effectiveness of the convention and implement in earnest the confidencebuilding measures adopted by the Third Review Conference of the Parties to the Convention;7. Not export equipment, material, services or technology which could be used in the manufacture of biological weapons except when satisfied, for example, by recipient country guarantees or confirmation by the recipient, that such exports would not contribute to the development or acquisition of biological weapons;8. In considering whether to authorize the export for permitted purposes of the relevant items which might be of use in the manufacture of weapons of mass destruction, take into account:(a) the capabilities, objectives, policies and practices of the recipients, and any related proliferation concerns;(b) the significance and appropriateness of the items to be transferred;(c) an assessment of the proposed enduse, including relevant assurances by the government of the recipient state and controls on retransfer;9. Maintain export control systems in accordance with their national laws or regulations to enable these guidelines to be effectively implemented;10.Work together to increase the effectiveness of export controls pursuant to these guidelines.

Source: "Communique Issued Following The Meeting of The Five: Interim Guidelines Related to Weapons of Mass Destruction," Communiquée, Washington, 29 May 1992.

      By October 1991, a set of guidelines on conventional arms transfer was agreed upon at a London meeting. 673  On 1 January 1992, the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms 674  was established covering international arms transfers of battle tanks, armoured combat vehicles, large calibre artillery systems, combat aircraft, attack helicopters, warships, and missiles or missile systems. 675 

      The data is expected to be provided on an annual basis containing information on equipment imported into or exported from a country, including information on supplier and recipient States. The register covers all forms of arms transfers, that is to say, under terms of grant, credit, barter or cash.

      A few months latter, at the May 1992 Washington meeting of the P5, agreement was also reached on what was then referred to as "interim guidelines related to weapons of mass destruction" (see Table III.1.19). 676  Nevertheless, the P5 members were also very much concerned with the dual-use character of selective control regimes. They affirmed at the time that "...that international nonproliferation efforts should not prejudice the legitimate rights and interests of states in the exclusively peaceful use of science and technology for development", while declaring that they would observe and consult upon the interim guidelines.

      Enlargement of the efforts to strengthen control regimes and formal agreements was also extended to the work of the European Union (EU), the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). For example, the EU has for long exercised some control of the arms trade and dual-use goods since the coming into force of the Treaty of Rome in the broad framework of Article 223. Other legal provisions are inscribed in the 'The Council Regulation' no. 428/89 of 1989, which prohibits the export of certain chemicals used for the development or production of CWs. 677  In 1991, the EC Council made a declaration on non-proliferation and arms exports. It noted the desire for a harmonization of national policies based on specific criteria in the perspective of political Union. 678  As of 1992, proposals for changes in export restrictions were tabled covering, inter alia, agreement on a common list of (a) nuclear goods and nuclear-related dual use goods and (b) destinations subject to control, and (c) better co-ordination and communication in the issuing of export licences. 679 

      OSCE Member States issued its criteria on convention arms transfers in 1993 which called, among others, for "...exercise of due restraint in the transfer of conventional arms and related technology." 680  A decision on mutual assistance in the establishment of national control mechanisms and the exchange information about national legislation and practice was also made. As for NATO, discussions took place notably within the scope of the Alliance's Policy Framework on proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, where political and military answered to the development of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles are considered. 681  On the political level, support was expressed to both multilateral agreements and selective control regimes and, as regards military issues, the Alliance considered to examine potential threat to the territory of its members and to consider new measures necessary to defend itself. 682 

C. The Impact of Technology Denials

1. Substantial or Marginal Benefits?

      Selective control regimes or ad hoc arrangements were progressively put into place so as to curb access to weapons of mass destruction, their delivery vehicles, and other heavy conventional weaponry. While there exists no international legally binding agreement on export controls, the development of these various ad hoc arrangements has led to the situation that, for some States, their rules and procedures form a significant contribution to international norms, in as much as they are seen as (a) constituting an international regime on transfer controls and (b) contributing to international efforts to control dual-use technologies. This rationale has been clearly stated by the group of the most developed countries and the Russian Federation in the following manner:

      We underline our support for the arrangements that make up the international export control regimes. The Zangger Committee and the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Missile Technology Control Regime, and, for those who are members, the Australia Group export control regime, all contribute critically to the global application and enforcement of international export control norms. 683 

      However noble this objective micht be, it is not necessarily widely shared. There exists enough historical background today to analyse the evolution of selective control regimes and ascertain whether the benefits from these regimes have been substantial or marginal. This analysis could make from at least on two perspectives. One is by looking at control regimes in as much as the first principal objective of control regimes is concerned: that is to say, to curb the access to weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles. Another approach is to consider the second overriding objective of selective control regimes, that of providing the stimuli for countries (i) to stop their military developments in areas related to control regimes and (ii) not to provide equipment and technologies in the international market.

      At first glance, it appears appropriate to state that there have been considerable benefits to international security and peace which have derived from the implementation of these regimes. For example, control regimes have greatly contributed to the creation of commonly shared values among an ever-growing number of States on limits to be placed for the development of weapons and delivery vehicles. In the same vein, the creation of selective control regimes has also contributed to the emergence of a conscience among these same States on the need to act collectively so as to better handle preventive actions aimed at controlling arms build-ups.

      Moreover, selective regimes have helped to gather States together to voluntarily work towards specific objectives. Member States, therefore, do not act under the constraint of legally binding agreements, but are instead driven by political engagements generated by political will. This type of initiative is not so difficult to be undertaken between traditional political or military allies, notably in the framework of Western European and North American countries, but its importance has been emphasized specially with regard to new cooperative ventures which include former adversaries as in the case of the former Soviet Union-Russian Federation and the countries of the former Eastern bloc. In these cases, participation in selective control regimes was an additional step for these countries to become part of a new regional and more global political identity and to have responsibilities for the maintenance and strengthening of international peace and security. Another example is the case of China. MTCR Members have been able to bring China into a series of technology transfer talks which could perhaps not have taken place had MTCR not existed.

      Equally important has been the fact that selective control regimes have also attracted some countries in Latin America and Africa which had developed relevant dual-use technologies. This is the case of Argentina, Brazil, and South Africa, which also joined selective control regimes such as the MTCR and others. In contrast, some countries such as Israel have pledged observance to the general objectives of the MTCR, but not to other regimes. Hence, selective control regimes have been able to diminish the number of potential suppliers in the international market, while not having these countries participate in all of the different regimes or requiring their adhesion to formal agreements.

      Selective control regimes have also been a central platform for discussions on the development and harmonization of technology export/import laws. While the strengthening of these laws have taken place on the national level, considerable discussion on minimum levels of control have taken place in ad hoc arrangements, thus ensuring that improvements on the level of acceptance of national efforts to control technology imports/exports are made under the rule of consensus. These debates have led to the situation where regime members are adapting the norms created at international discussions into their national body of law. This was clearly the case of legislative reforms in the Russia Federation, Argentina, and Brazil in the early-to-mid 1990s, where their new laws resemble and incorporate much of the norms developed in the MTCR.

      Furthermore, in theory, due to technology denials, selective control regimes might have delayed missile and warhead material programme development time as well as they might have increased programme costs; although in practice it is difficult to identify the real impact such transfer controls have on development programmes since a number of other factors come into play. 684 

      On the other hand, selective control regimes have not been able to bring certain countries into their control system; nor have they been successful in attracting any kind of support for their objectives among these countries. India, Pakistan, Iraq, PDRK, and Lybia are among some of the clear examples of countries which have developed dual-use technologies and which do not participate in any selective control regime.

      In the early 1990s, Iraq invaded Kuwait thus triggering international reaction and the UN Security-Council resolution 687 which established a special commission (UNSCOM) to "roll back" Iraq efforts aimed at developing weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles. Although there was some allegations in different quarters of Iraqi access to dual-use technologies for military purposes during the years preceding that invasion, observers were generally surprised with the level of development Iraq programmes had reached, most of which were possible only with help from other countries. The absence of restraint by Iraq and insufficient technology control on the part of foreign suppliers indicate that benefits of selective control regimes were marginal in this case for, while programme developments may have been delayed due to different reasons, Iraq finally reached the point of developing its own versions of ballistic missiles and their mass destruction warheads.

      India and Pakistan have conducted a series of nuclear tests on May 1998. India, which started the tests on May 11 with three explosions and subsequently with two additional ones on May13, indicated that the tests have "...[e]stablished that India has proven capability for a weaponised nuclear programme". 685 

      Pakistan, which made a first round of nuclear tests on 28 May and a second one on 30 May, stated that "... [t]he devices tested correspond to weapons configuration, compatible with deliver vehicles." 686  In addition, both Indian and Pakistan have developed short- and/or intermediate-range ballistic missiles and there are overt indication that their nuclear tests were specifically directed to be placed in missile warheads:

      The data provided by these tests is critical to validate our capabilities in the design of nuclear weapons of different yields for different applications and different delivery systems. 687 

      India scientists will put a nuclear warhead on missiles as soon as the situation requires. India has not closed its option to conduct more tests if and when necessary. In the meanwhile work on the Agni Phase-II has started in earnest. 688 

      As in the case of Iraq, selective control regimes seem to have had a marginal impact on Indian and Pakistani developments of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles, since they have not curbed them from accessing military-grade nuclear material, ballistic missiles, and their technologies either indigenously or with the advertent or inadvertent assistance of foreign companies and governments. Nor have selective control regimes been successful to attract other countries like PDRK to either join them or to support their main objectives. On the contrary, PDRK continues to sale BMs and their technologies in the open market.

      This discussion leads to the consideration of the second principle objective of selective control regimes, the containment of the spread of dual-use technologies, which is a policy basically centred on actions that can be taken by possessor States. For example, in a situation where countries have already acquired technologies for both weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles, the work of selective control regimes and multilateral agreements is focussed on instigating potential suppliers (a) to stop their weapons programmes, and (b) not to provide nuclear devices, ballistic missiles, and their technologies in the international market. This policy has been pursued by the P5 Members of the UN Security-Council in order to deal with the Indian/Pakistani situation. Both of these groups of countries have highlighted concerns on this matter and have basically called upon India and Pakistan on June 1998, among others, to:

  1. refrain from the weaponization or deployment of nuclear weapons;
  2. refrain from testing or deployment of missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons;
  3. adhere to the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty;
  4. adhere to the Non-Proliferation Treaty as non-nuclear weapons States
  5. participate on a Fissile Material Cut-Off Convention at the Conference on Disarmament; and
  6. confirm their policy not to export equipment, material or technology that could contribute to weapons of mass destruction or missiles capable of delivering them. 689 

      In this regard, non-binding selective control regimes impose no legal constraints on technology possessor States such as India and Pakistan either to refrain from continuing their weapons programmes or to transfer their technologies. The only constraints that can be said to exist is the respect of political engagement on the part of other suppliers not to assist India or Pakistan to further develop their weaponry: at present, such constraint may have a very limited practical impact on programmes of either of these countries. Nevertheless, India has voluntarily announced that it "...will continue to exercise the most stringent control on the export of sensitive technologies, equipment and commodities--especially those related to weapons of mass destruction." 690 

      The power of selective control regime can be said to be marginal in this case, and other types of constraints would have to be imposed on countries in the same situation as India and Pakistan; notably by countries members of selective control regimes which have stringent national laws in this area. For instance, the United States has to impose sanctions on countries that attempt to develop weapons of mass destruction due to national laws such as the Glenn amendment and, on 30 May 1998, the American President stated that:

      In accordance with section 102(b) (1) of the Arms Export Control Act, I hereby determine that Pakistan, a non-nuclear-weapons State, detonated a nuclear explosive device on May 28, 1998. The relevant agencies and instrumentalities of the United State Government are hereby directed to take the necessary actions to impose the sanctions described in section 102 (b) (2) of that Act. 691 

      In essence, both selective control regimes and sanctions such as the ones mentioned above strengthen the argument often made by some countries that selective arrangements are discriminatory in nature. Discrimination is seen both in terms of the selection of (a) the technologies these arrangements cover and (b) the countries on which controls are focussed on. The discriminatory nature of selective arrangements is also further argued in the sense that they are perceived to represent an extension of a non-proliferation regime whereby the haves maintain the right to possess weapons, missiles and technologies, while the have nots are hindered from acquiring them. This view was summarized by India as follows:

      Regrettably, the world is still far from establishing a comprehensive and equitable regime of nuclear disarmament, primarily because the nuclear weapon States have not taken credible and effective steps towards this goal. What has been put in place is a deeply flawed and discriminatory non-proliferation system which has legitimised the possession of nuclear weapons by a few countries and their presence in our neighbourhood. It is this adverse security environment that has compelled us to take the decision to carry out nuclear weapon tests. 692 

      In this respect, selective control regimes have also had a marginal effect in promoting comprehensive adherence to the different arrangements. On the contrary, for several years, selective control regimes were considered to be "selective country clubs", whereby technology transfer policies were developed to the detriment of countries outside the "club", hampering their development of certain military programmes, but also hindering some civil-oriented ventures. The close linkage between civil and military uses of rocket technologies (and to a lesser extent radars and satellites) has then for long been tied-up to technology transfer controls as part of a much wider non-proliferation effort. The next section will dwell on how, and, to what extent, these perceptions are or were true.

2. Hindering Developments in Outer Space Activities?

      The high level of technology and resource investments needed in the development of outer space activities often instigates States to search for cooperation in this area. Cooperation may be seen in many ways and to different degrees, which can vary from joint ventures and other complex forms of sharing resources and knowhow to a simple purchases of equipment, material, technology or services. However, cooperation is dependent on a number of political, legal, commercial, financial, and other related issues.

      For many years, EtSC States have controlled technology transfers based on their national legislations and the selective arrangements, in view of avoiding the development of ballistic missiles, military-grade satellites and ground related systems. These controls have been argued to have affected various key areas of outer space programmes; including raw material, components and their technologies, equipments and their technologies, as well as the flow of services and the development of cooperative ventures in general. In order to illustrate specific areas of control, Diagrams III.1.A through III.1.C and Tables III.1.20 though III.1.22 provide some examples where technology control can constitute a significant obstacle to the development of different components of space systems, which affect directly or indirectly entire programmes.

Table III.1.20: Select Space Rocket Equipment and Technology Controls
Equipment/Technology Function
1. Propulsion System
2. Vehicle Material
3. Composite Material 4. Ceramic Material
5. Accelerometer & Gyroscope
6. Trust Vector Control
7. Instrumentation
8. Microwave
9. Storage & Pump
10. Computer & Electronics
Solid or liquid motor impulsion or booster
Metallic structure
Compulsion structure, specially nuzzle
Reentry vehicle
Inertia platform: guidance and navigation systems
Control system
Liquid propulsion motors
Liquid propulsion motors
All systems

      Diagram III. 1.A: Example of Space Rocket Equipment and Technology Controls [non disponible]

Table III.1.21: Select Satellite Equipment and Technology Controls
Equipment/Technology Function
1. Buss Material
2. Energy Source
3. Altitude and Guiding Systems
4. Propulsion Motors
5. Sensors: Optical, Electromagnetic,
& Global Positioning System
Refinement and resistance-proof techniques
Greater performance of solar panels
Accelerometer and Gyroscope
Quick reaction time techniques
Better precision of Earth observation


Diagram III. 1.B: Example of Satellite Equipment and Technology Controls

      In the case of space launchers, control affects key areas related to liquid fuel precursors, manufacturing equipment and technology, stage separation and electronic components, telemetry, engines, and navigation systems--inertial platform and guidance equipment. Beyond these areas, restrictions are believed to affect services which, as in the case of equipment and technologies, could also be used for both civil and military purposes.

      Technology controls related to satellites occur in different areas as well. For example, military satellites are expected to be autonomous spacecraft and often need different highly sophisticated motors in order to propels and maintain them in Earth orbit for the longest period of time. One way of controlling the development of military spacecraft is therefore by restricting the transfer of satellite apogee motors which apply the same principle that are used in liquid rocket propulsion motors. Indeed, restrictions are covered by the same national laws and selective arrangements. So is the case of altitude control motors, that also function on the same principle of rocket motors.

      Satellite instruments are also targeted by technology transfer controls. Military satellites are positioned in geostationary orbit to detect events and low Earth orbit military spacecraft are used to provide more detailed information. In addition, new satellites can be launched for dedicated missions in low orbit at around 110 km for a few days or weeks. CCD cells in these satellites are considered to be sensitive technology, where a special ceramic material sensor is attached to the CCD cameras. Denials which have occurred in this area tend also to affect civil-oriented programmes which use this type of camera for a variety of civil missions.

      Another area affected by control restrictions is satellite energy sources. All-weather satellites and radar technology need considerable energy constantly. This is one of the reasons why satellites are also powered with nuclear energy and solar panels. Some highly sophisticated technology used in military satellites indicate a 30 per cent performance in energy sources-- notably in American military satellites, a much higher percentage than observed in current civil-purpose spacecraft--around 10 to 15 per cent. Solar panels becomes therefore one of the key technologies in controlling dual-use satellite systems and equipment. Other major restrictions cover geopositioning systems, which is used in satellites for altitude control.

      Understanding the dual-use nature of tracking systems is also important in order to grasp the extent to which controlling key technologies is efficient to hamper developments in the civil space sector. For instance, inclination orbit satellites need more than one ground antenna installation to send or receive information between a satellite and its operator or user, while polar and geostationary orbits only one such installation. Detection and telecommand for orbital and mission correction are normal functions of satellite operations. However, dedicated military satellites (which need to be directed at different areas as the need arrises) might require more orbital changes than their civil-use counterpart, while orbital correction are made by both civil- and military-use spacecraft. In addition, military satellites also need to correct their orbital parameters more often, since they tend to change orbits more frequently than civil-use ones. Therefore, equipment and technology related to basic satellite altitude and orbital control, reaction speed, and cryptology functions find themselves under sone restrictions.

Table III.1.22: Select Tracking Station Equipment and Technology Controls
Equipment/Technology Function
1. Detection
2. Correction
3. Reception
Altitude and orbital control
Reaction speed and cryptology
Satellite operation

      Diagram III. 1.C: Example of Tracking Station Equipment and Technology Controls [non disponible]

      In another area, reception antenna sensors for remote sensing in civil-use satellites use the X. The C, KU, X, and L bands are used for communication by these same spacecraft, while military satellites use the X band. They also use the S band due to their need of having more amplitude. In order to avoid interference, frequency is internationally regulated by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). Civil satellites have to inform their geographic position, frequency, and power source under the CNT, while all of this information is not necessarily known for military spacecraft. This is compounded by the fact that civil satellite installations are usually fixed and their location well know, while military satellite installations are fixed and mobile, and their whereabouts are often unknown. Another way of hampering the development of military satellites is therefore by restricting technology transfers related to satellite functions involving reception and telecommand operations.

      The options left to EmSC States have therefore been either termination of programmes or additional national investments in the production of restricted technologies and end-products. In some cases, indigenous production circumvented technology transfer denials therefore limiting dependence, while in others cases denials have actually led to fierce political confrontation. Other casess have shown the political influence of control regimes on space development plans.

      Space development in Argentina is a case in point. For instance, Argentina is believed to have accessed dual-use space rocketry technologies by the first half of the 1980s, before the first guidelines of the MTCR were agreed upon. Therefore, the MTCR was believed not to have had any impact on the development of an Argentinean indigenous rocketry plan. With the creation of CONAE in 1993, however, it became clear that, for economic reasons, the development of a space launcher could be carried out only with international partners. This assessment reportedly led Argentina to undertake negotiations with MTCR participating countries so as to allow its entry into this regime, which would facilitate international partnership later. Having reached this stage, Argentinian private companies are undertaking discussions with potential partners in Brazil, France, and Italy to develop a new space launcher. This example shows that control regimes can have political implications on economic issues related to the development of space activities, which in turn affects both the route and the way EmSC States plan their activities.

      The Brazilian space programme has also been affected by technology denials, 693  notably its development of a launcher and satellite. In the rocketry area, Brazilian missile and rocket programs falling within the controls of the MTCR in the late 1980s and throughout the 1990s included the SS-300, SS-1000, SONDA III, SONDA IV, and the VLS; particularly the AVIBRAS and CTAðs SONDA-based technology rockets on which each strep-on buster and vehicle-body engine of the VLS is based.

      In the late 1980s, Brazil needed to purchase certain space equipment, parts, and technologies abroad since its domestic industry was not yet able to produce components with space qualifications. 694  Restrictions had been applied by MTCR members, including with respect to the acquisition from France of Ariane's Viking engine, the USA as regards the Delta II rocket, and material and services from France, the USA, and the United Kingdom. 695 

      Another important restriction was imposed by the USA regarding an incident involving US technology and service related to Brazilian VLS components in 1990. At that time, the lack of wind tunnels and heat-treatment ovens to produce, harden and test certain types of engines and structures in Brazil led the IAE to send seven Brazilian steel rocket casings to Lindberg Engineering of Chicago to be heat-treated for insulation by a special annealing process. 696  At the request of the US Department of Defense (which feared that Brazil might provide Iraq with missile technology during the 1991 Gulf war), the State Department refused to allow the Chicago firm to return the rocket casings to Brazil. The casings were released a little over a month later, when the United States received assurances from Brazil that it was not providing assistance to Iraq. However, the hardening of eleven other rocket casings were reportedly aborted. 697 

      Brazilðs non-accessibility to qualified space technology resulted in a three-year delay in its space program and additional expenditures running into millions of dollars. 698  Restrictions have also delayed Brazilðs entry into the international satellite launching market. Indeed, with the delay in the production of the VLS, the first Brazilian satellite was launched by a US Pegasus rocket in February 1993, with an additional cost of US$ 12 million. 699 

      Examples of control restrictions in the Middle East that could be mentioned involve the development of military-grade satellite technology and the distribution of this imagery in the international commercial market. For example, the application by the United Arab Emirates to purchase an American in 1992 and the access to such imagery by a Saudi company are two cases in point. 700  Reports indicate that various consultations took place between American and Israeli officials where Israeli security interests led to a decision "...establishing restrictions on the release or sale of high-resolution images of Israeli territory". 701  The potential military-use of dual-use satellite technologies prevented access to images which could be used in several civil-purpose programmes. American restrictions present a problem to acquire high-resolution imagery of the Middle East, since the only other country which offers that kind of imagery resolution, the Russian Federation, has an old imagery archive, it is very difficulty to obtaining recent imagery of that region. (5.30m Indian Imagery may, depending on the end-use, be utilized for military purposes.)

      In Asia, although MTCR members and other States have cooperated in different occasions with Indian and Pakistan in their rocketry programmes, there also exists examples of technology transfer denials related to their space programmes. For example, a famous case involved India, Russia, and the USA in the early 1990s. In 1992, ISRO undertook contacts with Russian space authorities in view of purchasing cryogenic rocket engines and related technologies. The transfer of this type of liquid fuel engine technology would have given India a significant leap ahead in its programme to develop geostationary orbit and indeed space launcher capabilities more rapidly and probably less costly than if the programme were to be fully indigenous. However, this type of rocket could also provide the basic technology for the development of intercontinental-range ballistic missiles.

      The United States quickly intervened in the Indian/Russian deal arguing that it constituted a potential problem for international security, particularly since neither of these countries were members of the MTCR at the time. 702  The United States then started a series of meetings with both Indian and Russian representatives aimed at convincing both countries to halt the transfer. The American position was quite strong at the time since it was to negotiate major cooperation agreements with Russia on their respective civil and military space programmes. At one point, the US Congress Senate Foreign Relations Committee was reported to have made links between a "...US$ 24 billion aid to Russia conditional on the latter's cancellation of the cryogenic rocket engine deal with India". 703  Additionally, threats of sanctions under American law were also made to both India and Russia. By mid-1993, the matter was dealt with at the Presidential level when both the US Vice President Gore and the Russian Prime Minister Chernomyrdin were charged to implement the bilateral Commission on Space and Energy Issues, involving Russian launches of American civil satellites and collaboration in space station issues. 704 

      It was American concerns related to "dangers associated with the cryogenic deal" and the potential cooperation in the space area with the United States that strongly influenced Russia to announce its observance of the MTCR and eventually become a full member. The US State Department announced that the Russians were reconsidering the cryogenic engine deal. 705  Reportedly, Russia finally supplied India with the cryogenic engines but under controls of both the amount of technology and hardware transferred, which would not allow India to acquire the capability to produce the engine itself. 706 

      In the United States, two cases involving American companies and oversees partners in 1998 are indicative of the efforts to control the transfer of dual-use technologies. One is the work undertaken through the international joint-venture to develop the Sea Launch Platform. The other is the American use of Chinese space vehicles to launch America-made satellites. In the first case, the American Boeing Corporation has reportedly transferred technical US technology to its partners in the Russian Federation and the Ukraine. 707  Since such transfer is control by law, the Department of State halted the work being undertaken by Boeing on the commercial Sea Launch Platform. In order to resume work on this launch vehicle system, Boeing had to agree to pay the US government US$ 10 million as a penalty for such incident.

2. The Future of Selective Control Regimes

      The Missile Technology Control Regime is the only security arrangement directly associated with outer space. From its inception in 1987, it has been linked non-proliferation initiatives. The future of selective control regimes therefore cannot be assessed without taking into consideration the control mechanisms in the MTCR, or by distinguishing MTCR controls from controls exercised by other selective arrangements. It therefore follows that the future of outer space technology transfer itself is dependent on that of selective control regimes. In particular, considering that the MTCR has become a model to follow for many countries when their national assemblies prepare new legislation which cover the transfer of dual-use technologies.

      As discussed above, selective control regimes have not been entirely successful over the years. While the basic philosophy of these regimes has not changed in the post Cold War period, their modalities and implementation mechanisms have been significantly revised in the last ten years. However, as events in international relations evolve, it is clear that such ad hoc arrangements need more fundamental and comprehensive restructuring. Hence some speculations on different prospective developments for the future of existing control regimes deserve special attention.

      The first issue to assess is that of the possibility for reenforcing control regimes. Such an assessment should of course be developed in light of problems related with the practical implementation of regimes in a changing international security environment, where not only the basic fabric of regional and global security are evolving, but also where access to dual-use technologies is an important component of new threat perceptions and real political, military, and economic power. Yet, is reenforcement of existing selective regimes a means in itself? The answer to this question is clearly no. It leads us to question if the very philosophy of control regimes should not change and, if this premises is right, how and under which circumstances could such a fundamental change occur?

      Thought should therefore be given to possible new institutions which could conceivably replace existing control regimes. The crux of the matter is to inquire if new forms of control could better achieve Wassenaar, NSG, or MTCR objectives, presumably providing a new form of supplier/recipient relationship. Would a treaty based on MTCR controls be an adequate legal instrument to curb the spread of ballistic missiles? Would a revision of the MTCR regime be sufficient to ensure such efforts? How would MTCR-like controls in a new treaty structure complement controls in other ad hoc arrangements? Equally important, how could any new treaty based on selective control regimes be expected to attract universal adherence? These and other institutionally related questions are addressed henceforth.

A. Reenforcement: Walking Forward or Ambling Back?

      Concrete changes in selective control regimes have been made on various areas, but the issue in question is whether these changes are conducive to improving the supplier/recipient relationship, and whether or not these changes have improved the efficiency of control regimes, while also favoring the transfer of outer space technologies. In some cases, these changes seem to have represented a significant step forward in terms of regime formation. However, on a more global perspective, reenforcement of selective control regimes have been timid. They could be considered as a move ambling back with respect to strategic needs and imperatives to provide a sustained international peace and security environment.

      Oe may consider, for example, that control regime changes which have increased their adherence have clearly provided opportunities (a) for the international community at large to learn more about these arrangements, (b) to reenforce these arrangements, and (c) to internationalize the previously more selective nature of regime partnership and guidelines. The fact alone that these regimes have "opened themselves to the world" is in itself a move forward with respect to increasing acceptance of security-related norm formation. Increasing the number of members adhering to selective control regimes has therefore been an important means to build more credibility into these different arrangements. The more countries contribute to the development of security norms, the stronger is the multilateral basis of norm acceptance and regime formation.

      Consequently, there are considerably more countries involved in control regimes today than a decade ago, thus strengthening transfer guidelines which are now part of a larger technology transfer control network. Several countries today are part of most or all of these regimes. Participation in different arrangements certainly shows major policy lines concerning efforts to constraint access to weapons of mass destruction. It also illustrates the increasing readiness of these countries to form international mechanisms to control access to different weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles. This is situation should not be underestimated, particularly since it constitutes an important phase in a move towards a more multilateral status for selective control regimes.

      In spite of changes which have improved the structure and implementation procedures of selective control regimes, the voluntary nature of adhesion to these regimes still remains a common problem between selective arrangements, therefore constituting a weak aspect of informal institutions such as selective control regimes. Another fundamental problem in these regimes is the supplier-oriented nature of their controls. The more suppliers there are of a given technology, the more difficult it is to control transfer if several or key suppliers are not part of the control regime. Hence the need to shift from a single-sided approach to a multi-sided one which also transforms the control nature of the regime to a multilateral restraint mechanism. In addition, there are no comprehensive and coherent verification mechanisms in selective control regimes. The lack of verification mechanisms is not beneficial to any single regime in the long run: neither for their efficiency nor for their credibility.

      Moreover, selective control regimes are still used as political or economic tools for States relations. The MTCR, for example, has always been an important element of non-proliferation policy. But it has become ever more important as a key element of efforts to stem proliferation in the post-cold-war era. In the past, adherence to MTCR and other arrangements has been invoked along side other issues such as human rights to explain refusal of specific trade and other relations with non-MTCR members (e.g., the granting of Most-Favored-Nation status by the United States to other countries). In other cases, countries may opt not to transfer outer space launcher technologies. This because transferred items could be used for military purposes, but also since recipient countries could too develop launch vehicles which would compete with national launchers: a non-written policy which is defended in the interest of ensuring economic prosperity on the part of suppliers.

      In addition, problems related to the interpretation of political and technical issues regarding of guidelines and other regime provisions may still arise in the absence of a clear treaty text establishing commonly agreed norms of procedures. This is particularly true as the number of regime members increases, which increases the number of partners in the regime with different political and cultural backgrounds. Standardization of concepts and procedures becomes an issue of increasing importance.

      Reenforcement of selective control regimes has also taken place in terms of the subject matter these arrangements are mandated to deal with. The MTCR has increased the items on its control list, for instance. The Wassenaar Arrangement has also added other items to its control list. The Australia Group has itself also added new substances to its control guidelines. In addition, some of these regimes cover substances and technologies that are controlled by another arrangement or by multilateral agreements (see Table III.2.1). The Wassenaar Arrangement, for example, covers transfers in all areas of weapons of mass destruction and conventional weapons. The Wassenaar Arrangement, Zangger Committee, Nuclear Supplier's Group cover nuclear issues, as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and the future Fissile Material Production Cut -off will cover. Although selective regimes are not necessarily duplicating each other's work at present (some arrangements are only ensuring transparency while others are actual technology control instruments), the risk exists of creating such a situation in the future. There is also a risk that coordination on control efforts and transparency measures are not best served by the multitude of contact points and procedures in the different existing arrangements.

      The question may then be asked of what is the rationale for having separate ad hoc regimes aimed at controlling access to dual-use technology and weapons, particularly when most member States are members of several or all of these arrangements. Are these arrangements more efficient as separate regimes or would they be more coherent and manageable if combined into one single institution? Could there be other benefits of a practical or other nature which would justify such regrouping of norms and procedures?

      While reenforcement of selective control regimes seems to have been necessary, this reform forward has not solved all of the problems posed by the selective nature of control arrangements. Indeed, present developments have also created new challenges and overlapping mandates. A more vigorous reform to solve these problems calls for a radical change of the underlying philosophy of control regimes. There is a need to create a new and a more solid, less confrontational, approach to deal with the relationship between supplier and recipient States

Table III.2.1: Selective Control Regimes Subject Coverages
Selective Arrangements Multilateral Instruments











BTC _     _   _          
CA _     _     _        
CW ð       ð           ð
NM ð ð ð           ð ð  
Rct ð       ð           ð

      *= Agreement under negotiations; **= Transparency regime; AG= Australia Group; BTC= Biological and/or Toxin Agents; BWC= Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention; CA=Chemical Agents; CW=Conventional Weapons; CWC= Chemical Weapons Convention; EU-DR= European Union Dual-use Regulation; Fissile Material Production Cutt-Off; MTCR= Missile Technology Control Regime; NM= Nuclear Material; NPT= Non-Proliferation Treaty; NSG= Nuclear Supplier Group;Rct=Rocketry (components or complete systems); TGs= Technology and/or Goods; UNRCA= United Nations Register on Conventional Weapons; ZC= Zannger Committee; WA= Wassenaar Arrangement.

B. New Agreements?: Challenges and Practical Problems

      For different reasons, the future of selective control arrangements is still to a large extent uncertain. One of them is that, as arrangements such as COCOM, found no longer a reason d'être in the post Cold War era and was then terminated; other arrangements may suffer the same fate as new relationships in regional and global security issues evolve. Another reason is the lack of consensus among EtSC States but also between EtSC and EmSC States, on an adequate international security agenda which could address the issue of selective control regimes in a comprehensive manner. In spite of this situation, there seems to be an increasing trend towards supporting the tightening of existing controls both on the national and international levels. Only a few countries, such as India and the PDRK, argue that there is a need for the international community to take radical new actions.

      However, increasing the control of dual-use technologies in its present selective and often unco-ordinated form not only creates obstacles in the relations among States, but it also escapes dealing with perceived problems of dual-use weapons' grade material and the acquisition of missile systems in an adequate manner. It certainly made considerably more sense to have selective control regimes on sensitive issues such as technology and weapons' control during the Cold War period. The rationale dominating the existing security paradigm at the time was that of block confrontation and therefore technology suppliers felt the need to protect themselves by excluding or controlling transfers. The likelihood of reaching agreement on the multilateral level was then much lower than it is the case in the post Cold War years. Since then, significant multilateral agreements have and are still being negotiated: the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention, the 1997 comprehensive test-ban treaty, the 1998 Ottawa Process on Land Mines, and the on-going negotiations on a fissile material cut-off agreement are examples.

      Embarking on a multilateral negotiation on technology transfer may perhaps be an appropriate solution to the dual-use outer space technologies problem. The designing of a new multilateral regime in this area could aim, inter alia, at measures that reflect the concern of both suppliers and recipients alike in the following way:

  1. Supplier-oriented concerns:
    1. creating end-use verification mechanisms;
    2. establishing common mechanisms of transparency;
    3. incorporating accepted indicators for predictability; and
    4. developing acceptable and reliable means of treaty enforcement.
  2. Recipient-oriented concerns:
    1. ensuring the transfer of technology for civil purposes;
    2. addressing economic issues related to technology transfer; and
    3. addressing security-related concerns associated with technology transfer.
  3. Multilateral nature of the regime:
    1. ensuring geographic distribution;
    2. ensuring the participation of all States developing space activities; and
    3. instigating broad membership leading to universal adherence.

      The evolution in national laws in different countries during the last 10 years from military control of dual-use technology to controls which are increasingly stipulated by legislative bodies makes it easier to reach an international agreement; for more and more countries have now similar legislation in this area. In addition, a multilateral agreement on technology transfer would provide an opportunity to regroup the various national and international control lists and transfer procedures, thus standing a chance to render the controls more coherent and efficient.

      There are, however, practical problems with an agreement which would regroup various different dual-use issues. One is the diversity in the nature of the issues involved. It also implies a multitude of different industrial basis ranging from material for the production of conventional weapons to weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles. Creating a single new agreement to cope with these issues is complex. It may complicate the present situation more than it could help it. Besides, there exists certain international agreements which could take up some new tasks instead of attributing them to a new organization which would centralize a variety of control mechanisms.

      Yet another problem is that a multilateral agreement which would regroup the transfer of space technologies with that of nuclear and other materials would duplicate existing treaties, as well as it would maintain the linkage made at present between space technologies and security issues related to ballistic and other missiles. The crux of the matter is therefore that of identifying the exact role control regimes have to play in weapons acquisition efforts and, subsequently, making an appraisal of how the issue of dual-use outer space technologies could be separated from other security issues in as far as civil-use technologies, their assets and services are concerned. This is not an easy task given the intimate and long standing relationship between the development of weapons proper and that of their delivery vehicles.

      One important premises to be considered is that control regimes expressed in ad hoc international arrangements are an expression of national policies which are based on a refusal to the spread, for example, of ballistic and cruise missiles as a means of delivery vehicle for weapons of mass destruction or for conventionally charged warheads. As a consequence, proponents of arrangements such as the MTCR argue that some categories of dual-use rocketry technologies should not be transferred. On the other hand, the argument can be made that, as agreed in the spirit and the letter of the1967 Outer Space Treaty, "...outer space shall be free for the exploration of any State without discrimination of any kind...," and refusing technology transfer on the bases of the MTCR is not compatible with that principle. Hence, the MTCR is a security-derived selective regime. It affects civil-oriented activities and, arguably, apparently does not have its place in international space law. 708  Understanding this fundamentally different appreciations of how the dual-use technology issue is dealt at present is essential in order to predict and prepare the future of selective control regimes.

      Another premise to be taken into consideration is that technology transfer cannot be made without significantly contributing to the development of weapons systems; be them delivery vehicles or their payload material and related technologies. As a result, it may be argued that selective control regimes need to be improved so as to prevent such developments.

      Therefore, it is difficult to envisage that the MTCR could be used as an example for the drafting of a multilateral agreement on the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies; unless the fundamental basis of such an agreement is that of ensuring technology transfer and not hampering development in space activities. Such an agreement would have to be based on the principle of free access to outer space. The military nature of dual-use technologies should be dealt with in a different context than that which it is considered today, as well as under a new spirit of negotiations.

Part IV
From Confrontation to Cooperation:Practical Reality or Wishful Thinking?

      The present relationship between EtSC and EmSC States is based on restraint as regards dual-use outer space technologies and, in some cases, restraints creates an environment of political confrontation. Great efforts should therefore be made to demonstrate how practical measures could stimulate the transition from a confrontational relationship to one which would be based on cooperation. Conceivable mechanisms for cooperation would include increasing transparency of transferred technologies as a first step. In this regard, a step-by-step approach in cooperative initiatives could build confidence between suppliers and recipient States. Such initiatives could prepare the grounds for other measures which would have a more restrictive character: e.g, measures aimed at building security by addressing issues related to dual-use outer space technologies and activities.

      The practical implementation of cooperation would call for action on the part of technology recipient States and unilateral measures which these States could announce. This could, for example, start with the passing of national legislation which would guarantee transparency of the end-use and subsequent resale of transferred technologies. As discussed earlier, there are few countries which have such kind of legislation in place. 709  Another area of attention covers the issues of sovereignty and concessions which would have to be considered in view of instigating cooperation among States. However, confidence-building cannot be seen as a responsibility of recipient States alone. Attention should also be devoted to the role that supplier States could play in undertaking reciprocal measures.

      Accordingly, another step aimed at increasing cooperation between technology supplier and recipient States could consist of adopting measures which increase predictability of any misuse of transferred technologies. This could be part of a security-building phase in the co-operation process, where contracted arrangements could be agreed upon. Bilateral or other limited-party agreements could institutionalize procedures, guidelines, and codes of conduct which would regulate technology transfers. Such initiatives would better organize this specific area of international trade, provide the opportunities for increased interaction between States. It would also introduce the occasion for a better integration of their different legislation.

      Two other major issues should not escape scrutiny in this discussion; namely: compliance and enforcement of agreements. It is important to assess how these issues could be conceived within a confidence and security-building process. Besides limited-party treaties, attention should be given to the issue of adhesion to major arms limitation and disarmament agreements. This is an important aspect of security-building measures and thought should also be given to legitimate interests of national security threat perceptions and the principle of discrimination. In general, these are principal reasons of non-adhesion to arguments. Different alternatives can be envisaged to cope with such contingencies.

      However, unilateral, bilateral or other limited-party agreement negotiated on a case-by-case basis may not be a long lasting solution to providing a stable international system. These approaches are not likely to be universal in nature and the case for a multilateral agreement on the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies becomes more arguable. Although such a multilateral agreement would be quite difficult to negotiate, its goals would be more easily attainable if the above-mentioned co-operation process were already in motion, providing some degree of experience on measures of transparency, predictability as well as on their enforcement.

      In this connection, it is important to address the interests that each party might have on such a negotiation, and the political environment within which this type of initiative could be exploited. Additionally, the question should be asked of what would be the major political, technical, and financial issues to be discussed in such an agreement. Here, a bridge should be built between political/diplomatic issues and possible technical obstacles in prospective negotiations. Among other questions that should be addressed is that of identifying the role that international organizations could play in such negotiating debates. This would imply not only an examination of the most appropriate forum where such negotiations could take place, but also on any post-agreement roles that this type of organization could conceivably play in the implementation of an eventual multilateral treaty on dual-use technology transfers.

1. Conceivable Mechanisms for Co-operation

A. Increasing Transparency: Confidence-Building Measures (CBMs)

      Confidence-Building Measures (CBMs) must be politically acceptable and technically feasible in order to have a practical impact. The role of CBMs is capital in so far as these measures are, first and foremost, aimed at improving levels of predictability. In addition, higher levels of predictability could generate a more favorable political environmental for discussions. Predictability could be achieved by means of greater transparency on technology transfers. Legally, national legislation could solidify rules and procedures which would permit some degree of predictability with respect to the end-use, and misuse, of the technology in question. The objective is not to bend to the demands of supplier States--as it is sometimes argued in some quarters, but to reduce to acceptable levels their legitimate concern as possessors of transferred technologies.

      Some EmSC States have already taken concrete steps towards that direction by transferring outer space R&D from the responsibility of the Air Force or another armed service to civil entities (e.g., Argentina), or by preparing legislation to control both the use and resale of transferred technologies (e.g., Brazil). Other initiatives have been proposed in terms of CBMs via measures of transparency, as a number of countries started to discuss the transparency in armaments at informal meetings of the CD in 1992. For instance, France has elaborated on this issue by supporting the pooling and analysis of information on national legislation, regulations and export control procedures, so as to provide grounds to cope with concerns related to the problems of the transfer of dual-use technologies.

      Prior to the French proposal, the UN General Assembly had already invited the international community to inform the Secretary-General of national arms import and export policies, legislation and administrative procedures. The resolution referred to both authorization of arms transfer and prevention of illicit transfers. In some countries, this type of legislation also governs dual-use technologies, in particular, since reports should include legislation covering very short-range ballistic missiles. 710  As for the French proposal itself, it was particularly aimed at developing a database on national legislation that could help States which have not developed such procedures to adopt their own. In addition, this initiative was also expected to enhance the development of cooperation within a particular framework of safeguarding security.

      However, CBMs may have a limited impact since it is an arbitrary concept which also needs time to mature and become credible. Therefore, in some cases, recipients of dual-use technologies find adhesion to ad hoc and selective regimes as the most direct and quickest way to resolve the technology transfer issue--even if only in a marginal and temporary way. This is one of the reasons that adhesion to selective control regimes has increased by over a dozen countries in the last five years.

1. Technology Recipient States and Unilateral Measures

a. National Legislation

      National legislation is considered to be an essential element of democratic institutions in controlling technology transfer. Nonetheless, not all established or emerging space-competent States have comprehensive and adequate national legislation controlling the use and transfer of dual-use outer space technologies. This is also true with respect to former Eastern bloc countries and Soviet Republics, particularly those which have retained some capabilities in dual use outer space technologies and human resources. Additionally, even some of the countries who have developed such legislation may not have the proper financial and practical means of reinforcing them.

      In the case of Brazil, for example, the fact that the Air Force is in charge of the development of the country's rocketry programme is a source of concern for many EtSC States. Among the Brazilian entities working on rocketry development are the Air Force's Institute for Space Activities (IAE) and the Technological Institute of Aeronautics (ITA), both of which are part of the Aerospace Technical Centre (CTA) of the Ministry of Aeronautics Department for Research and Development in São José dos Campos. Brazil has had a space agency for some time. Some experts argue that transferring control of the rocketry programme to the space agency could constitute an important step in the direction of unilateral measures aimed at building confidence with respect to the end-use of this technology. The tradition of the Brazilian Air Force to have control over civil aviation and space launch activities makes it that the space agency may not take control of launcher developments in the near future. As a consequence, official statements have been made upon the Brazilian entry into the MTCR arrangement which indicated a clear intention to follow MTCR guidelines.

      Another example is Argentina. Here the development of rocketry systems was also under the control of the Air Force, but was latter placed under the administration of the Presidency of the Republic with the creation of CONAE. This was subsequently restructured to be under the supervision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which assured more civil control of strategic decisions on the development and use of dual-use technologies.

b. Issues of Sovereignty and Compromise

      Sovereignty, a basic principle which is associated with the right to make decisions of national and international character without any pressure, intimidation, or blackmail, is an undeniable right for all States. This established principle, inscribed in Chapter I, Article 2, § 1 and 4, of the 1945 United Nations Charter, describes that "[t]he Organization is based on the principle of the Sovereign equality of all its members... [a]ll members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations." Given the overwhelming number of States which have accepted these obligations (185 UN Member States in the international community), this is also a recognized fundamental principle of international law, which the UN Security-Council is expected to ensure its integrity.

      In the same vein, the possibility to develop outer space capabilities is also another principle codified by international law, as inscribed in the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, of which its spirit and letter establish, in the Preamble and Article I, that:

      The exploration and use of outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interest of all countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development, and shall be the province of all mankind.

      Outer Space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, shall be free for exploration and use by all States without discrimination of any kind, on a basis of equality and in accordance with international law, and there shall be free access to all areas of celestial bodies.

      There shall be freedom of scientific investigation in outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, and States shall facilitate and encourage international co-operation in such investigation.

      Stimulated by the principle of sovereignty and that of access to outer space, some may argue that controlling the sale of rocket technology is not consistent with the principle of access to that environment. 711  Technology supplier States members of the MTCR would therefore be in the position of breaching a well established and codified international norm. The fact of the matter is that this norm would be breached only if there would be an action to prevent the development of space launchers, and not an action not to sell rocket technology. An unlawful act, however, would be to impose the transfer of technologies on a third party, by force or another means of coercive.

      It is in this context that it is important to mention the notion of private property, which is to be understood in this debate as a commodity belonging to an individual, institution or State who also own its property rights. In a free international community where the principle of sovereign right is in force, a given commodity may or may not be sold, transferred or provided in any other way to a third party according to the owner's free will. In this spirit, technology developed by a State is also a commodity and hence a State's property. Therefore, a State can, of its own will, decide whether or not to supply this technology in the international market. This decision is the sole arbitrary right of a technology possessor State.

      In addition, since this commodity is its own property, it is up to this technology possessor State to decide whether or not it wants to place requirements on technology transfers. Such a decision is not contrary to international law. Nor is it unlawful in international law not to sell outer space technologies. Indeed, it could be argued that a technology possessor State would have the moral duty and the obligation under the UN Charter to avoid transfers which may be against the spirit of the UN Charter, e.g., if it would fear that a transfer would be detrimental to either regional or global security.

      Therefore, there is a need to reach a compromise between suppliers and recipients of outer space technologies. On the one hand, recipient States have to accept the ownership rights of supplier States and to understand their concerns, particularly as such concerns might relate to international security. In this case, the military use of transferred technology without the previous consent of its supplier could constitute the lack of observance of a code-of-conduct or the violation of a formal agreement on the end-use of transferred technologies.

      On the other hand, supplier States have to realize that the spirit of international outer space law is based on the stimulation of cooperation for equal access to that environment and its exploration. The question may be asked if the hampering the development of outer space activities is contrary to international law? One thing is certain, and it is that the relationship between suppliers and recipients should could not be beneficial to the development of outer space activities if it is not based on cooperation, but faced with multifaceted situations of confrontation due to technology transfer controls.

2. The Role of Supplier States and the Need for Reciprocal Measures

      Suppliers of outer space technologies should also make efforts towards the building of confidence between them and technology-recipient States, particularly with respect to activities carried-out by suppliers and which could be seen as discriminatory in nature. For example, the concept of technology transfer and missile sale controls is not accepted by all States and it is difficult to convince some recent or potential suppliers that such restraints are essential to avoid destabilizing situations, when traditional suppliers (EtSC States) themselves have sold missiles, their technologies and services for years in the international market. These missile sales cover a large range of products worldwide including antiship, antiaircraft, antitank and interceptor missiles in air-to-air, ground-to-air, ship-to-air, ship-to-ship, and ground-to-ground modes.

      One classical example is the American sale of its Polaris and Trident missile systems to equip British nuclear submarines. From the American perspective during the Cold War, it made sense to sell nuclear-capable missiles to its NATO ally, thus increasing allied deterrent power against the Soviet block or any other potential aggressor. However, it stands as a fact that the United States is the only country which has sold (i) a submarine-launched ballistic missile in the international market, (ii) a BM system of an intercontinental range, (iii) a missile manufactured to carry nuclear warheads, (iv) a missile with payload capability for reentry-vehicle technology, and (v) missile tests and other services.

      Another case in point is the variety of missiles sold in the international market by the former Soviet Union, and the continuation of this practice by the Russian Federation . The then Soviet IRBM Scud missile series is probably the most sold BM in arsenals worldwide. Over a dozen countries have been reported to possess or have had this missile in their arsenals. In addition, different versions of Scud missiles have been modified into improved performance and longer range vehicles both with technology transfer and indigenously. As a consequence, other countries also sell this missile and its technology in the international market. The Russian SS-300 is another missile available for sale.

      China has reportedly sold both IRBMs and their technologies in the open market. The M-11 to Pakistan and the CSS2 To Saudi-Arabia being the most quoted in the specialized literature. A handful of other countries have tried to sell complete missile systems or just portions of missile technology. The Arrow missile is another case in point. The US and Israel are developing this interceptor system as a joint venture. It is difficult to determine at this stage if the final product will be sold on the international market or not, as is the case of the Patriot missile batteries. In the same vein, it is difficult to anticipate if any other theatre interceptor missile to be used by American forces in the future will not be transferred to its allies in NATO, Japan, Republic of Korea or other countries. Added to ballistic missiles and their interceptors, there is the growing interest in Cruise Missiles (CMs) that perform well in hilly terrain with very fine accuracy and which, although usually carries only conventional warhead, its technology is not as complicated as it is in the case of ballistic missiles. Cruise missile systems are also available in the international market.

Table IV.1.1 Example of Known Missile/Technology Available in the International Market
East Wind CSS2 IRBM Conventional, Chemical, or Nuclear China
M-11 IRBM Conventional, Chemical, or Nuclear China
Patriot MI Conventional United States, Japan, and Germany
Scud IRBM Conventional, Chemical, or Nuclear PDRK, Russia
SS-300 IRBM Conventional Russia
Tomahawk CM Conventional or Nuclear United States
Trident SLBM Nuclear United States

      CM=Cruise Missile; IRBM= Intermediate-Range Ballisitc Missile (500 to 5,000 km); MI= Missile Interceptor; SLBM= Submarine-Launch Ballistic Missile (5,500 to 16,000 km)

Source: Compiled from information provided in Global Arms Trade: Commerce in Advanced Military Technology and Weapons, Office of Technology Assessment, United States Congress, June 1991; and others.

      Allowing the continuation of missile and technology sales by a group of States, while controlling them for others is seen as a discriminatory approach. No doubt, in each of the above sales, there have been political, military, and/or financial benefit for the supplier State and new or potential suppliers argue that discrimination in this area should therefore not be considered as a simple and insignificant matter, but an issue that has implications over and beyond the political, military, and financial realms: there also has ramifications related to various other technical, technological, and industrial aspects of development.

      There is therefore a need to address missile sales restraint on a global basis, placing all States on the same level. The question here is to what extent can this reasoning apply? Beyond the issue of sales is that of BM and--increasingly--CM development and use. For instance, how can the knowledge of BM developments assist in the control of BM sales? It would be naive to call for a ban on BMs and/or CMs. However, would it also be inconceivable to consider a BMs/CMs no-first-use declaration? Are these delivery systems perceived as performing a similar fundamental role as nuclear weapons and other mass destruction payloads? Whether the answer to this question is yes or no is irrelevant. The question is that of knowing if negative nuclear assurances could be coupled with what could be referred to as negative BM and/or CM assurance? Is it possible to separate the role of modern-day delivery systems for weapons of mass destruction and conventional weapons from their payload themselves? How could political and military strategies be adapted to such a radical eventuality? If such a new approach to security could be practical, a no-first-use missile declaration could be a useful instrument to build confidence. It could also render the argument against the production and sale of such missiles stronger.

      It is in this vein that an agreement on the notification of rocket launches is relevant to CSBMs in outer space and related activities. This is primarily because such an agreement could cover access to outer space technologies for civil use; it would involve weapon systems which could play strategic, theatre, and/or battlefield roles. In this context, it is worth recalling the spirit of a rocket launch notification proposal made by France in 1993. This was described as reinforcing "...the prevention of the diversion of such [space] technologies to military uses and to promote space cooperation in a framework based on confidence and security.' 712  Space launchers and sounding rockets do not seem to present a security threat in themselves. Rather, the crux of the matter appears to be a need to increase transparency and predictability with respect to two major circumstances: (a) if, and to what extent, a State is developing dual-use outer space technologies and (b) if missiles are being flight tested.

      The proposed agreement would set up an International Notification Centre (INC) responsible for the centralization and redistribution of notification of planned launches. Notification, to be made one month prior to the launch, should include the date, time, and should be confirmed 24 hours before the launch. Aside from the civil-use aspect of the INC initiative which covers notification of space launchers and objects, the proposal's military activity component contemplates launch notification of missiles with a trajectory having a range of 300km or more. Notification should also include the date of launch, launching area, impact area, as well as confirmation of launches actually carried out. This information, to be kept in a data-bank, would then be placed at the disposal of the international community. The proposal also invites States possessing detection capabilities to contribute to the verification of the information notified to the INC, which could be done by voluntary communications to the INC of rocket launch data detected by their NTMs.

      The French proposal was not entirely a new idea in 1993, since it reflects in part the ballistic missile launch notification obligations negotiated in the United States and the Soviet Union in the 1972 SALT II agreement (ICBMs), the 1988 Notification of Launches Agreement (ICBMs/SLBMs), and the 1991 and 1993 START I and II treaties (ICBMs/SLBMs). There is therefore considerable experience in launch notification and monitoring, although only on the bilateral level. However, the French initiative has the merit of including the following new ideas:

  1. It is not a selective initiative since it proposes an obligation on the multilateral, not bilateral, level;
  2. It is a more comprehensive initiative both in terms of rocket launch characteristics and employment. Unlike the four above-mentioned bilateral agreements, the proposed regime would:
    1. Not be limited to intercontinental ballistic missile, but to missiles having a range of 300km or more;
    2. Not contemplate exemption of notification in respect to launches in national territories;
    3. Extend notification to space launches regardless of their payload; and
  3. Consist of a treaty-specific instrument and would not be part and parcel of a larger agreement or process.

      In spite of such innovations, the launch notification proposal has its shortcomings. Most of the opposition it has faced has been based on the following arguments:

  1. it legalizes the launching of ballistic missiles for military purposes;
  2. part of the launch information would be notified on a voluntary basis;
  3. it covers the same missile range level of the MTCR arrangement (300 km or more), while limitations on Iraq missiles established restraints to 150 km or more; and
  4. it does not take into account technological imbalances between EtSC and EmSC States, in particular with regards to verification, of which mechanism would be tributary to the political will of States possessing detection capabilities.

      A revised French proposal could therefore constitute a more transparent regime with mandatory and universal verification under the control of a multilateral organization. Such a proposal could be an appropriate tool to show missile supplier's determination in non-discriminatory non-proliferation initiatives. While US/Soviet agreements were inspired in view of reducing the risk of the outbreak of war between them, the French proposal, to a large extent, was aimed at increasing transparency at the risk of missile proliferation, be it vertical or horizontal.

      The issue of missile was to gain more interest from the international community when in September 1998, the Russian Federation and the United States adopted a joint statement on the exchange of information related to missile launches and early warning and, subsequently, in 1999--at the UN General Assembly, the Islamic Republic of Iran promoted a resolution on the missile issue, opening the ground for a broad debate on missile and transparence in rocket launches. The debate increased its momentum when an international meeting of experts took place in March 2000 in Moscow, addressing the issue of a "global control system for the non-proliferation of missiles and missile technology." One of the ideas discussed concerned the notion of States assuming "the obligation to renounce the possession of missile delivery systems for WMD on a voluntary basis..." 713  This idea builds on a proposal presented by the Russian Federation based on the principle of developing a three-stages missile launch transparency regime, where the first step would consist of the creation of a multilateral pre-launch and post launch notification regime; followed up by the creation of an appropriate international monitoring centre; and ending with the establishment of a regime for the monitoring (observation and verification) of rocket launches. 714  The Russian Global Control System was therefore proposed with the aim of creating:

  • a missile launch transparency regime;
  • a mechanism to guarantee the security of participating States that have renounced the possession of missile delivery vehicles for weapons of mass destruction;
  • an incentive mechanism for States which have renounced the possession of missile delivery means for weapons of mass destruction;
  • an international consultation mechanism within the framework of this control system for improving the regimes and mechanisms of the Global Control System and to resolve issues that might arise. 715 
  • The Russian proposal contemplates a systems which is to be:
  • developed on a multilateral basis;
  • established on the basis of an equal rights of participation;
  • open to all interested States;
  • established on the basis of voluntary participation;
  • operated under the aegis of the United Nations;
  • developed based on a phased approach. 716 

      The issue of missile launch was to evolve again when, on 4 June 2000, the Russian Federation and the United States signed a Memorandum of Agreement on the establishment of a joint Centre for early warning systems, data exchange and missile launch notifications. 717  The Memorandum was not only intended to address the issue of Russian-United States missile launch notification, but also contemplated the possible implementation of a multilateral regime of such launches. It therefore established the creation of a Joint Data Exchange Centre in Moscow for missile and space launcher launch notifications. Article 3, paragraph 1, defines the scope of information exchange to cover the following:

  1. all launches of ICBMs and SLBMs of the United States of America and the Russian Federation;
  2. launches of ballistic missiles, that are not ICBMs or SLBMs, of the United States of America and the Russian Federation;
  3. launches of ballistic missiles of third states that could pose a direct threat to the Parties or that could create an ambiguous situation and lead to possible misinterpretation; and
  4. launches of space launch vehicles.

      The Memorandum goes further, in paragraph 2, to state that "Each Party, at its discretion ... may also provide information on other launches and objects, including de-orbiting spacecraft, and geophysical experiments and other work in near-earth space that are capable of disrupting the normal operation of equipment of the warning systems of the Parties." Both parties announced a joint statement on cooperation on strategic stability, where they informed that "they will work together on a new mechanism to supplement the Missile Technology Control Regime," which would integrate, among others, the Russian proposal on a missile control system and the U.S. proposal for a missile code of conduct. 718 

      In terms of multilateral discussions, the General Assembly passed a resolution in the fall of the year 2000, requesting the Secretary-General, with the assistance of a panel of governmental experts, to prepare a report for the consideration of the General Assembly in 2002. 719  This report is mandated to address the issue of missiles in all its aspects and work has already started to constitute this group. It is still too early and therefore very difficult to predict the direction in which the group of expert will take and the recommendations that it will provide to the Secretary-General.

      Another issue of importance is the possible development of space weapons and the future of the Russian/American ABM Treaty and the American Ballistic Missile Defence programme. One of the problems with using one single site for the interception of ballistic missile attacks--as limited by the ABM Treaty, for example, is argued to be insufficiency of coverage to detect and counter incoming missiles or reentry vehicles. In its 1995 Report to Congress, the BMDO elaborated on the 'Potential to Evolve to Higher System Effectiveness' by stating that:

      The addition of a space based weapons element to the NMD architecture has significant payoff in defending the U.S. against an attack from any location on earth. Continues global coverage provided by a space defence allows a highly increased probability of zero leakers not only for Continental United States (CONUS), but also for Alaska, Hawaii, and all U.S. territories as well. Such a system operating in a boost phase of an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM's) flight makes the NMD system relatively immune to countermeasures that might occur over the next decade and beyond. 720 

      This argument is further substantiated by proponents of BMD who argue that missile interception in outer space would pose less fall-out problems than in air space. Hence the need to develop space-based interceptors. The US/Russian negotiations on the ABM Treaty is therefore an issue of importance. Here some States see the need to strengthen the Treaty and open adhesion to other countries and not to weaken it. In doing so, there is concern that a new and enlarged ABM Treaty could create a NPT-like discrimination-bis, where the US, Russia, or BMD partners would have the right to develop and possess space weapons, while other nations would be proscribed such acquisitions.

      Avoiding the weaponization of outer space by sending the message that potential possessors of weapons in outer space would agree not to develop such devices could constitute an important measure of confidence in as far as EtSC States' intentions to avert vertical proliferation of missiles and interceptors is concerned. However, while building confidence is essential, it is also necessary to build security between suppliers and recipients. This is an exercise which calls for a whole different set of measures.

B. Increasing Predictability: Security-Building Measures (SBMs)

      One of the most important measures that could be taken to decrease the interest of potential BM development is to diminish tensions in regional disputes and other security relation situations. A number of security-building measures could be introduced whereby perceived levels of military and other threats could be reassessed and diminished. These measures could include bilateral and multilateral agreements, reliable discussion mechanisms to resolve conflicts, as well as initiatives undertaken to strengthen relevant arms control and disarmament instruments.

      Considered together, these different measures could provide the international community the means to have greater predictability of States' intentions, capabilities, and developments of the military-use of transferred technologies.

1. State-to-State Agreements

      The first idea that comes to one's mind which could help in averting military use of transferred outer space technologies are supplier-recipient agreements covering either national development of space launcher, BMs, and the reexport of technologies, material and services. One example of such an agreement in the nuclear field is the American/PDRK heavy-water reactor. In this example, the United States, Japan, and the Republic of Korea have attempted to eliminate PDRK's access to weapons' fissionable material by replacing the development and use of heavy-water nuclear reactors by that of light water plants. Another example is the 1994 Indian agreement with the IAEA for its U.S.-built Tarapur twin nuclear power reactors and the fuel reprocessing plant which are under IAEA inspections. This would show PDRK's desire to use nuclear material from this plant for peaceful purposes. Although the principle would be the same, ensuring the end-use and no reexport of transferred technologies may well be more difficult to accomplish in the rocketry field than in the case of large and more volatile nuclear material and reactors.

      In essence, bilateral agreements may establish different procedures and guidelines whereby transferred technologies can be made. Of particular importance are procedures of compliance and enforcement with respect to post-sales control of transferred equipment, e.g., in the sales of rocket parts such as gyroscopes. There are different levels of control but verification of the end-use of transferred equipment becomes essential, particularly since it is more difficult and perhaps even impossible to control the technologies themselves. In addition, verification of end-use is complex, costly, humanly and financially demanding. This type of verification concept has several legal implications and carries the risk of providing a sense of false security. Moreover, vericiation can also be rather intrusive and could have an impact on legitimate civil activities. Hence, verification and enforcement may be particularly difficult instruments to negotiate.

      An alternative is a set of Codes of Conduct that could be agreed between technology supplier and recipient States. It should create an environment codifying procedures and guidelines beyond the actual agreement. Codes of Conduct are useful tools to include issues which could not be negotiated and which could be the objective of attention in a confidence-building process. One problem with the concept of Code of Conduct is that it implies moral-political obligations and this type of initiative stands a chance to be successful only if the countries involved have or apply the same moral-political standards. Therefore, it is important that the parties involved undertake considerable preliminary work in accepting each others' understanding of the different objectives and terms of established codes of conduct.

2. Multilateral Initiatives

      Increasing the role of the international community in regional situations is another approach which is often discussed in debates on CSBMs. In South Asia, for example, this idea has been contemplated through a proposal to extend the concept of 'Partnership for Peace' so as to make it applicable to India and Pakistan. 721  The proposal consists of using the European initiative as a model for States in the region, centred on measures of economic development that could provide for the creation of comprehensive and lasting structures which would lead to better security between States which have tense relations.

      In this context, concrete support should be given to initiatives such as an Indian-Pakistani agreement on the no-first use of nuclear weapons and the establishment of a direct hot line between top officials in both countries. Consideration is also usually given to the idea of stimulating States to reassess conventional weapons balance in the region and to reappraise the issue of a nuclear-free zone in South Asia. Similar ideas are contemplated in the case of tensions in other parts of Asia, where the traditional American involvement in the Korean Peninsula is expected to be complemented by a more active policy led by China and other interested countries in the region. Indeed, China is a key element in Indian security planning and the idea of a trilateral approach to security merits attention. All of these initiatives could be discussed within the framework of a regional centre for conflict prevention.

      In sum, the above proposals call for a reevaluation of regional security through a revised approach of support by a group of States or organizations outside the region, using the new political and military environment of the end-1990s. Such an assessment is important on many accounts. For example, the need for such action is particularly necessary in South Asia where, in India, the view that there has been a spread of nuclear know-how in the 1990s which has caused a perception that such events have "...brought about a qualitative deterioration in India's security environment." 722  The argument is also made that new strategic alignments after the end of the Cold War have left South Asia outside of these circles. As a consequence, extended deterrence provided a discriminatory nuclear umbrella which is said not to cover India. In purely military terms, the existence of deterrent postures which contemplates the use of nuclear weapons "...even against perceived threats from non-nuclear States..." 723  pushed a country like India, with alleged no viable alternative, to seek for what has been explained as being "strategic autonomy" in the way of the May 1998 nuclear tests. From the Indian standpoint, only a "balance of rights and obligations in the entire field of disarmament and non-proliferation" can cope with the present nuclear situation. 724 

      Much could therefore be done to prepare a road map to diminish and eventually eliminate discrimination in weapons acquisition. It is important, in this context, to recognize how much progress has already been achieved in international law in order to prepare such a road map. As shown in Table IV.1.2, among the three existing types of weapons of mass destruction, the manufacturing, possession, emplacement, placing in orbit and installing on celestial bodies, and use of biological and toxins, and chemical weapons are prohibited by four agreements--where two of them call for the destruction of existing stockpiles. Restraints in nuclear weapons are governed by prohibition of transfer in the case of nuclear weapons within the framework of the NPT, the placing in orbit and installing on celestial bodies by the Outer Space Treaty, and the nuclear weapons free-zones in some regions of the world.

      A considerable number of prohibitions and limitations have been agreed on certain categories of delivery vehicles: namely heavy bomber aircrafts (the B-52 and B-1 for the United States and the Tupolev-95 and Myasishcehv for the Russian Federation), a variety of ballistic and cruise missiles covering ground-launched and air-to-surface ICBMs and SLBMs, and intermediate- and shorter-range ballistic missiles.

Table IV.1.2: Legal Status of Weapons of Mass Destruction and their Delivery Systems
Weapon and
Delivery System
Obligation Agreement Nature of Agreement
A. Biological and
Prohibition of use
Prohibition of development, production, stockpile, or acquire; no transfer; destruction of existing stocks
Prohibition to emplant or emplace on the sea-bed, ocean floor, and subsoil beyond the outer limit of the sea-bed zone
Prohibition to place in orbit around the Earth, install on celestial bodies, station in OS
B. Chemical Prohibition of use
Prohibition of development, production, acquire, stockpile, retain, transfer, use, engage or assist in any military preparations to use chemical weapons, the use of riot control agents as a method of warfare; destruction of chemical weapons and their facilities
Prohibition to emplant or emplace on the sea-bed, ocean floor, and subsoil beyond the outer limit of the sea-bed zone
Prohibition to place in orbit around the Earth, install on celestial bodies, station in OS
C. Nuclear Prohibition of transfer
Prohibition of test
Prohibition to emplant or emplace on the sea-bed, ocean floor, and subsoil beyond the outer limit of the sea-bed zone
Prohibition to place in orbit around the Earth, install on celestial bodies, station in OS
Free zones
Tlatelolco, Raratonga,Pelindaba, Bangkok

1. Aircraft

Quantitative and qualitative limitations on heavy bombers
Reduction and limitation on nuclear-armed heavy bombers
Reduction and limitation on nuclear-armed heavy bombers

2. Missiles and
Advance notice of planned missile launches in case missile are to be launched beyond its territory in the direction of the other Party
Advance notification of planned activities presenting danger to military ship navigation and aircraft in flight
Prohibition of the conversion of certain missile launches, limitations on SLBM launchers and BM submarines, limitations on the construction of certain ICBMs
Quantitative and qualitative limitations: ICBM and SLBM launchers and ASBMs, no new construction, conversion, flight test, and new versions of certain ICBMs. Advance notice of multiple ICBM launches, as well as notice of single ICBM launches outside its territory and in any direction
Registration of space objects and their launches
Advance notice of ICBM and SLBM launches (date, area and reentry impact area)
Reduction and limitation of ICBMs and SLBMs, their launchers and warheads, limitation on ICBMs and SLBMs throw-weight. Destruction of ballistic missile launchers in excess to agreed numbers. Notification of ICBM/SLBM flight tests, including their launches to place objects into the upper atmosphere or outer space
Reduction and limitation of ICBMs, SLBMs, nuclear-armed ALCMs
Destruction of Intermediate/Shorter-Range GLBM and GLCM, prohibition of possession, production or flight test
Limitation of deployment sites and missiles systems to counter ICBMs
Prohibition to place in orbit and install on celestial bodies if carrying weapons of mass destruction
Exchange of information on missiles and space vehicles detected by early warning systems


      *= Treaty not ratified;

      ABM= Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty;

      ALCM= Air-Launched Cruise Missile;

      ANL-ICBM/SLBM= Agreement on Notification of Launches of ICBM and SLBM;

      AMRRONW=Agreement on Measures to Reduce the Risk of Outbreak of Nuclear War;

      ASBMs= Air-to-Surface Ballistic Missile, 600km or more;

      Bangkok= South-East Asia NW-F Zone;

      B= Bilateral;

      CROLOS= Convention on Registration of Objects Launched into Outer Space

      CTBT= Comprehensive Test-Ban Treaty;

      GLBM= Ground-Launched Ballistic Missile, 1000-5500km;

      GLCM= Ground-Launched Cruise Missile, 500-1000km;

      GP= Geneva Protocol;

      ICBM= Intercontinental-ballistic Missile, 5500km or more;

      INF= Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missile Elimination Treaty;

      M= Multilateral;

      NPT= Non-Proliferation Treaty;

      OS= Outer Space;

      OST= Outer Space Treaty;

      PIOOHS= Prevention of Incidents on and Over the High Seas;

      PTBT= Partial Test-Ban Treaty;

      Pelindaba= Africa NW-F Zone;

      Raratonga= South Pacific NW-F Zone;

      R= Regional;

      RUMoA=Russian-United States Memorandum of Agreement on Establishment of a Joint Centre for Early Warning Systems Data Exchange and Missile Launch Notifications;

      SALT= Strategic Offensive Arms Treaty;

      SBT= Sea-Bed Treaty;

      START= Treaty on the Reduction and Elimination of Strategic Offensive Arms;

      Tlatelolco= Latin America and Caribbean NW-F Zone.

      All of these restraints are, however, obligations undertaken on bilateral US/Russian agreements--SALT, START, INF and the ABM treaties. Only the Outer Space Treaty prohibits, on the multilateral level, the placing of missiles in orbit and the installing on such vehicles on celestial bodies, provided that they carry weapons of mass destruction.

      Consequently, while achievements in new nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation efforts could lead to a new political and military environment, considerable work still remains to be done in the nuclear field so as to close the possession-discrimination-gap on the multilateral level.

      Nonetheless, it is worth reminding that negative security assurances have been given by nuclear weapons States--precluding the use of these weapons and their threatening to use them--against any State which is party to the NPT or similar internationally binding commitment not to possess nuclear weapons--short of nuclear weapons's States themselves or in alliance with one. However, a number of additional initiatives could be taken by members of the international community, drawing-up an agenda of obligations which would provide a stepped approach to dealing with the issue of discrimination. Some of them include: 725 

      Step 1: Nuclear Weapons Production

  • a freeze on the production of nuclear weapons and fissile materials for weapons purposes; and
  • an agreement with the IAEA to safeguard military-grade nuclear material.

      Step 2: Nuclear Weapons Possession

  • de-alerting of nuclear-charged missiles;
  • de-targeting of nuclear-charged missiles; and

      Step 3: Nuclear Weapons Transit/Transfer

  • a declaration of commitment to respect nuclear weapons no-transit zones; and
  • a declaration not to transfer missiles which could be used to deliver nuclear warheads.

      Step 4: Nuclear Weapons Use

  • a contractual assurance to non-nuclear weapons States against the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons, as instrument of pressure, intimidation or blackmail (a more detailed and legal binding negative security assurances);
  • a no-first-use policy and military doctrine;
  • a ballistic missile launch notification centre (ground-to-ground, air-to-ground, and submarine-launched basing modes); and
  • a prohibition of the use of nuclear weapons which would be simultaneously signed and the deposit of ratification simultaneously made by possessor States.

      Initiatives under step 1 would demonstrate the willingness of nuclear weapons States to forgo new versions of nuclear devices, but it is as of step 2 that they would start addressing the issue of nuclear weapons haves and have nots. Some of the initiatives in steps 2, 3 and 4 call for much caution and diplomatic skills, particularly because the shifting of the role of nuclear weapons from war prevention to war limitation would imply that conventional war is a safe option. 726  No doubt, this point is well taken. These initiatives would require a reassessment of the political and military roles of nuclear weapons, which has implications for military doctrines of declared nuclear weapons States, as well as States which have exploded nuclear devices and tested ballistic missiles but which have not weaponized their nuclear capabilities. In addition, further attention should also be devoted to the role of conventionally-charged BMs and CMs.

      The above argument is true with respect to a declaration on no-first-use of nuclear weapons by all nuclear weapons possessors, but also in the case of a ballistic missile launch notification. Especially, since the implementation of these initiatives would imply that nuclear weapons would loose their most important role and would also render the possession of nuclear weapons without any objective purpose, even in the case of self defense.

      After the implementation of step 4, these measures would have had a political and military impact over and beyond CSBMs in the field of outer space, affecting global and regional security in a considerably positive way. These measures could than be codified in international law through the convening of a multilateral agreement. The development, production, testing, deployment, stockpiling, transfer, threat or use of threat of nuclear weapons and their missiles should be prohibited, and their destruction assured. 727 

3. Strengthening Major Arms Limitation and Disarmament Agreements

      Additional measures that could increase the degree of predictability on the possible military use of transferred outer space technologies relate to technology recipient States' status to major multilateral arms control and disarmament agreements. Added to that status are these States' stand on current or foreseeable negotiations to improve the existing international security regime.

Table IV.1.3: Strengthening Select Arms Limitation and Disarmament Agreements
Agreements Number of
Number of Ratifications New
Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention 158 140 CBMs
Verification protocol*
Chemical Weapons Convention 169 109 -
Comprehensive Test-Ban Treaty 150 20 -
Fissile-Material Production Cut-Off * - -
Non-Proliferation Treaty 187 182 Third PrepCom

      *= Treaty or additional protocol undergoing negotiation; CBMs= Confidence-Building Measures

      For example, Table IV.1.3 regroups information on some major agreements covering weapons of mass destruction payloads for which ballistic missiles could be used. Technology recipient States' adhesion and/or ratification stands vis-à-vis such security agreements constitute an important component of predictability for weaponization capabilities in the rocketry field. Participation in international agreements adds an international political perspective to national decisions. However, ballistic missiles are also charged with conventional ammunition, and it would be inaccurate to limit missile development predictions only based on access to WMD payloads.

a. Adhesion

      The year 1995 has become a benchmark in the history of non-proliferation efforts, since the NPT Treaty was renewed on an indefinite basis. It permanently codified an international norm which has become the basic tool of multilateral efforts to hid nuclear weapons. However, a number of issues remained pending. Adhesion to such an agreement is an important indicator in analyzing a country's path to weaponize a missile. Although, as the events which took Iraq to have a military nuclear programme demonstrated, a country can embark on the development of a military nuclear programme and not be detected for some time, even though it is a party of the NPT and is under IAEA safeguards. After 38 years of the existence of the NPT, 5 States have still not adhered to it. Is that situation an indication that a country wants to leave the weaponization path open, or is this situation only due to a matter of principle not to accept a treaty which is deemed to be discriminatory in nature? The evidence of adhesion to the Treaty by some non-allied countries such as Argentina and Brazil (the first one having waited 28 years to join the Treaty and the second 31 years) and the Indian and Pakistani experiences with the May 1998 series of nuclear test certainly leave room for speculations about the real intentions of non-member States.

      The Argentinean/Brazilian example of joint inspection and independent full-scope safeguards with the IAEA could well fit the situation related to nuclear facilities in Indian, Pakistan, Israel and other non-adherent States. In addition to a parallel approach to ban access to nuclear weapons is adhesion to the CTBT. The banning of nuclear test will also constitute an important element in the analysis of a State's legal path to develop the capability of weaponizing a missile with nuclear payloads. Although several States already have committed not to develop and transfer nuclear weapons, it is important for the credibility of this agreement that these States adhere to it soon, as well as those States that do not have or plan to have nuclear facilities.

      Another agreement of concern with respect to universal adherence is the BWC. As of January 1998, the Convention had 140 parties. Considering the new States created in the last five years, the full range of obligations imposed in that BW instrument is still not binding for over 40 States. Although most of these States do not possess rocketry booster technologies, some of them, such as Israel, possess ballistic missiles.

b. Ratification

      Adhesion to a treaty indicates the political will of a State to join other States in an international agreement covering a given issue. Adhesion alone does not oblige a State to bind to a treaty's obligations, although a State becomes bound to observe the spirit of the treaty as inscribed in it preamble. This is why the deposit of treaty ratification, which is the formal acceptance of a treaty by the legislative branch of a country, is essential in order to render the treaty in force vis-à-vis a signatory State. The Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), for example, been signed by 168 States, while adhesion by the remaining States of the international community is important. Another pressing issue is that of stimulating ratification of the Convention. Over a year and a half after its entry into force (29 April 1997), 106 States have ratified this instrument. Under Article I, State Parties undertake to declare all chemical weapons under its possession and around half a dozen States have disclosed the possession of chemical weapons agents. The more States ratify the Convention, therefore, the clear it is to understand the picture of CW manufacturing and the tendency of the development of CW-charged missiles.

      In addition, the exports of CW precursors still remains a problem. For instance, while China had already signed the CWC on January 1993, but did not ratify it until May 1997, reports on the alleged transport of CW components (precursors: thiodiglycol and thionyl cloride) by the Chinese Yin He vessel to Iran created suspicions of the country's intention, and to some extent of the effectiveness of the CWC itself given the existing of important non-binding States, 728  even thought inspection of the Chinese vessel in a Saudi port has not shown any evidence of chemical weapons components. 729 

      In the nuclear field, CTBT ratification needs to be stimulated, particularly by nuclear weapons States and other nuclear-capable countries so as to facilitate ratification by other States. Given the procedures for entry-into-force of this agreement, the failure of some States to ratify it would clearly signify a veto to the beginning of inspections. It could also affect negotiations on future nuclear issues, such as the cut off of the production of weapons' grade nuclear material.

c. New Features

      Review conferences are by now common features of international treaties. They create the possibility to make amendments or to add completely new protocols. The BWC, a Convention negotiated during the Cold War in the late 1960s and early 1970s, lacked a verification mechanism and review conferences since the late-1980s have incorporated CBMs initiatives and, at time of writing, discussions are under way aimed at an agreement on international verification of compliance with this Convention, whereby every Member State's biological activities and facilities would be open for inspection. Not every State, though, particularly those possessing or having possessed BW report BW activities and national legal provisions to the UN Department for Disarmament Affairs. There is considerable work to be done in order to convince States to implement these CBM measures, and the development of a verification protocol is rather slow, needing much political will so as to reach agreement for signature by 1999, when the next review Conference will take place.

      In the nuclear field, the developments in Iraq with respect to a nuclear programme for military purposes indicated the need for some reforms in IAEA safeguard procedures and eventually a better balance between rights and obligations in the NPT. Not all NPT Member States have signed the improved IAEA safeguards adopted in May 1997. By end 1997, 109 States had safeguards agreement in full force, while almost 70 States did no yet accept full-scope safeguards. An overwhelming number of the former does not possess nuclear plants, but a small number of these States, including the PDRK, have a rather intense nuclear programme. Acceptance of new and full-scale safeguards would therefore eliminate the perception of "safe havens" where military-grade material could eventually be manufactured.

      The Geneva-based Conference on Disarmament has agreed on a negotiating mandate with the view of drafting an agreement which would be "...non-discriminatory, multilateral and internationally and effectively verifiable treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices." 730  The creation of a system of transparency and accounting in the amount of fissionable material which is produced by nuclear weapons States, including material for military purposes, would be a significant step towards nuclear disarmament. This would also change the nature of safeguard agreements in different ways. First, such measures could increase the level of safety of weapon's grade nuclear material, while decreasing the possibility that illegal traffic of such material go undetected. Second, nuclear facilities in nuclear weapons States would also have to be monitored, a new situation that could greatly improve the international political environment and indeed the security debate.

      Universal adhesion and ratification of major arms control agreements such as the ones mentioned above would constitute a further column in the set of pillars which hamper the acquisition of weapons of mass destruction and, by implication, other major weapon systems. It is also essential to note that the strengthening of existing agreements and the creation of new treaties which establish the same obligations for both possessor and non-possessor States alike diminish the degree of discrimination in certain existing legal instruments. In addition, it shortens the gap which would legally permit the weaponization of rocket technologies with mass destruction payloads.

      However, one of the major problems posed by this initiative is that it does not cope with the issue of technology transfer from a universal perspective. In the absence of an international organization in charge of outer space technology transfer issues, which could eventually co-ordinate such matters, the idea is entertained, especially among EmSC States, to develop an international machinery with that capacity. This is the subject of discussion in the next chapter.

2. Prospects for a Multilateral Agreement on the Transfer of Dual-Use Outer Space Technologies

      Initiatives involving Confidence- and Security-Building Measures (CSBMs) on outer space and related activities are likely to gain increasing support from both established and emerging space competent States. However, CSBMs are means to an end and not ends in themselves. Hence the present analysis should not be limited to such initiatives. It should also explore any other viable international mechanisms which could help in shifting the technology supplier/recipient relationship from a state of confrontation to a more cooperative one.

      It is with this objective in mind that the idea of negotiating a specific agreement on the transfer of dual-use technologies is worth considering. It is important to note that the premise which consists in arguing that the creation of an agreement is sine-qua-non to improve co-operation in the field of outer space is not well founded. Nor is it sure that such an agreement would be feasible. A number of obstacles of a political/military, financial, technical and methodological nature exist. Few, if any, States today are willing to propose large-scale initiatives that are politically unpopular, costly, and which contain a considerable degree of uncertainty with respect to their efficiency.

      In spite of these negative impressions, and perhaps because of them, it is essential to appraise the possibility of a multilateral agreement on dual-use outer space technology transfer; for besides the fact that such an agreement could be useful in the present international security environment, it would also have great potentials to be a successful undertaking in contributing to increase cooperation among States.

A. Can the Political Environment Instigate Political Will?

      The decision to initiate international negotiations on the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies would depend on various factors. It appears that the present international environment is such that it can generate political will in this direction. Indeed, since the early 1990s, a number of developments have occurred which make the start of such negotiations not only possible, but even a necessity: such an agreement would be an integral effort of a reappraisal of the present international regime dealing with the control of sensitive technologies.

      From the standpoint of selective control regimes, one could notice, first and foremost, the clear failure of selective arrangements to be universal, even after efforts in the last few years to increase the number of arrangement members. It is important to note that there has been no effort to render such arrangements universal, leaving significant suppliers and potential recipients of dual-use outer space technologies out of these regimes. This gap, which has left important BM manufacturing countries outside the control network explains, in part, BM and related technology transfers that have occurred in the last few years. Second, the incapacity of control regimes to cope with indigenous BM production is evident given missile developments in the Middle East and South Asia. Thirdly, there is the fact that in principle, and probably also in practice, loopholes in the regime also create safe-havens, where the development of weapons and weapon systems could still take place.

      From another angle, the nuclear tests undertaken by India and Pakistan indicate that if both the delivery vehicle and the payload technology are available, the decision to weaponize BM capabilities becomes much easier and indeed plausible, particularly in areas and moments of tensions. In itself, the situation in South Asia is quite problematic, but there are also fears that other countries may follow suit, thus further increasing the scope of the regional arms race. Particular areas of concern are the Middle East and the Korean Peninsula. How long will Israel continue to be considered a threshold country? How are the South Asian tests seen by other countries like Iran? Would the perception that "going nuke" actually bring military and other benefits to potential nuclear weapon States that countries would consider worth crossing the nuclear threshold?

      However, it is not too late for the international community to act in the Asian case. Weapons payload and delivery system capabilities have not yet been transformed into weaponized systems. Nuclear doctrines are still not operational. The moment is on the contrary quite ripe to envisage new ideas and dare to undertake new and innovate initiatives. This rather unstable political environment could actually generate political will to develop preventive measures. No doubt, technology supplier States would have much interest in strengthening the dual-use technology arrangement related to outer space in particular, and by implication the non-proliferation regime in general. In the same vain, technology recipient States would also have advantages in putting an end to arrangements such as the MTCR. There exists therefore a unique opportunity to shift the present policy of selective arrangements to a policy based on multilateral a agreement(s).

      A major initiative such as a negotiation on dual-use outer space technologies would also provide an opportunity to create a more balanced systems of technology transfer. On the one hand, there are those today who support the basic approach of the industry, which does not tend to be fully security-aware and therefore more lenient to support technology sales. On the other hand, there are supporters of a more political/military-oriented approach. It is often argued that it is too dangerous to transfer dual-use technologies, particularly to developing countries which do not have the legal, financial, and other means to ensure the civil use of transferred commodities. This imbalance is indicative of a situation of much disorder and little discipline in international commercial/security matters: this gap could be closed with a multilateral agreement.

      Negotiations on such an agreement would have to cover all three components of outer space capabilities--that is to say launcher, satellite, and tracking technologies, since all three have dual use applications. An agreement with such daring measures involving obligations for both technology supplier and recipient States on an equal basis would constitute an innovate initiative reflecting a new approach to international security matters. It should be balanced with measures aimed at opening up possibilities of cooperation, while at the same time ensuring the creation of mechanisms to avert and even counter the misuse of transferred technologies. Hence, the negotiations would also have to be based on the following four principles:

  1. Measures to ensure the transfer of dual-use technologies, including:
  • the introduction of national legislation dealing with the end-use of transferred technologies;
  • the development of a mechanism to follow-up technology transfers; and
  • the development of specific procedures for the protection of industrial secrecy.
  1. Measures to facilitate joint ventures, including:
  • the creation of an on-line database to provide information on existing and planned outer space programmes worldwide;
  • the creation of a space technology transfer information clearing-house;
  • the development of new initiatives aimed at supporting humanitarian and other programmes involving outer space technologies; and
  • the creation of a financial institution to assist transactions and investment initiatives.
  1. Measures to ensure transparency and predictability, including:
  • the development of a multilaterally-maintained database on technology transfer, drawing data from space agencies and the industry, in order to keep track of the trade in sensitive outer space technologies;
  • the creation of a Rocketry Launch Centre to receive prior information on the launching of any rocket, including ballistic and cruse missiles; and
  • the development of a verification protocol for the end-use of transferred technologies, including in sito inspections.
  1. Measures to enforce compliance with agreed norms, including :
  • the creation of a mechanism to resolve disputes in the event of allegations of recipient/third-party misuse of transferred technologies;
  • the provision of specific measures to respond by treaty members to violations of agreed norms;
  • automatic suspension of military technology, equipment, and service cooperation;
  • automatic suspension of international economic aid; and
  • the provision to appeal to the UN Security-Council to undertake international action to reverse any threat created by the development of weapons and weapons systems through transferred technologies.

      The debate to ensure the transfer of technologies could consider measures to render any transfer contingent to national scrutiny on the part of national assemblies, dependent on specific end-user procedures, as well as making some aspects of transfers open to the public. It is imperative that measures discussed also take into consideration ways and means to facilitate joint ventures, addressing in particular mechanisms that could be created in order to facilitate the flow of information and assist in financial matters. Measures such as the creation of a technology transfer database would not, of course, prevent transfers, but could instead constitute an important and valuable step towards the monitoring of transfer, be it in terms of hardware, software, or services. These efforts could build on the existing International Space Information Service, created under the United Nations Programme on Space Applications.

      States must adhere to international agreements with good faith. Material and other non-compliance with such agreements affect the spirit, objective and purpose of treaties, thus deteriorating the credibility of international norms. Therefore, another innovative feature of such an agreement could be the development of enforcement measures which would constitute clear disincentives for a State to leave or cheat the agreement. These measures could be contemplated through collective action stated in the agreement. They could be included in the form of a list of priorities--either in the body of the text or its additional protocols. 731  Enforcement measures could include military action under the UN Security Council approval if this body would deem it necessary so as to prevent or mitigate any adverse impact on the agreement or international security. This is a sensitive issue and much opposition to such an aspect of the discussions could be expected, but it is important to keep in mind that the measures in question could constitute a new and strong deterrent element of regime-building which would decrease the interest of a contracting party to attempt to circumvent an agreement or breach it.

      In conclusion, the political environment, coupled with the need for the international community to undertake bold and comprehensive new initiatives to deal with problems of security in the next century, can generate the political will on the part of world leaders to initiate negotiations on this important aspect of technology transfer, which has close relations with weapons development. Concomitantly, reaching such a large scale and innovative agreement on dual-use technology transfer could diminish the interest of States to develop ballistic and other similar missiles. Such an agreement would be an important step towards a series of progressive initiatives related to, among others, (1) a moratorium on the production of ballistic and other missiles, (2) agreements on missile-free zones similar to existing agreements on nuclear weapons free-zones, and (3) an agreement on an eventual ban on these missiles.

B. A Multilateral Body to Monitor Outer Space Technology Transfers?

      The scope of issues too be debated in an eventual negotiations on dual-use technology transfer is such that it is worth considering that an international body would be necessary to be created in order to coordinate transfer and other activities. In this connection, the debate on the creation of a World Space Organization (WSO) is not in itself new, but the many objectives such an organization could serve seem not to have lost their purpose and their goals remain pertinent to technology transfer. For example, at first glance, and from the sole point of view of the development of outer space activities, a WSO could serve as a bridge between different national space agencies in both EtSC and EmSC States thus further instigating co-operation in the various aspects of outer space manufacturing capabilities and services. In addition, when political issues are analyzed, say, in the case of international security, a WSO could also provide the platform for improved confidence and transparency in outer space and related activities.

      Dealing with dual-use outer space control regimes would therefore be one of the priorities of such an organization. A WSO could become in itself a forum which would ensure the transfer of dual-use technology under a specific set of agreed rules, which could stimulate EtSC States to move away from selective control regimes. In this case, a WSO could eventually become a credible organization where a more coherent and non-discriminative technology transfer system could be developed, as distinct from creating a multilateral dual-use or any other technology control regime.

      The core of the debate may then be centred on the possible functions that a WSO would have to fulfil, as well as the scope of the organization's mandate. Perhaps the first question to ask is if a WSO should be limited to civil space activities, or if it should also cover military related issues? If the first option is retained, the greatest fundamental problem related to the creation of a WSO may well be that EmSC States would probably assess the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies primarily as a technological and economic issue. A WSO would therefore be expected to be more than a clearing house which dissimulates information on space exploration, avoids programme duplications and strengthening co-operation among national space agencies: this would include only the industrial and commercial aspects of the organization.

      EtSC States, however, would tend to place priority on the international security aspect of the debate. If a future WSO is not given a dual-function concerning civil and military issues--which could happen, the major concern from the international security point of view would be that of creating a climate where the need to cooperate in the filed of outer space could be superseded by a suspicion of misuse of transferred technologies. Conceptually, but perhaps more so in practice, a major problem in this debate would be how to incorporate the political-military concerns related to outer space activities into the functions of a WSO. In addition, there is also a need to define the nature and scope of political/military concerns to be addressed in such an organization. For example, should a WSO be in charge of, and improve, the 1975 Convention on Registration of Objects Launched Into Outer Space? In which case, it would be logical for the WSO to be also in charge of any future international rocketry launch centre.

      Clearly, including security matters on the WSO debate would, to some extent, depend on the negotiating forum chosen for these negotiations. This leads us to the question of what multilateral forum would be most appropriate to deal both with security and civil space issues simultaneously?

C. Identifying a Negotiating Forum

      Choosing a forum and the venue of major negotiations are usually every important decisions and effort should be made here to clarify theses issues with respect to an eventual negotiation on the dual-use of outer space technologies. Three possible multilateral discussion fora could be considered here, of which two of them already exist. One is the permanent Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) in Vienna, Austria. and the other is the Geneva-based Conference on Disarmament (CD) (see Table IV.2.1). Naturally, the first forum that may come to mind is COPUOS. This is a sound idea, particularly when one recalls that the most important agreement dealing with military issues of outer space, the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, was issued from discussions in that body related to peaceful uses of outer space. In addition, a number of other discussions and recommendations of COPUOS have led to the formulation and adoption of four other multilateral treaties and five declarations and sets of legal principle governing the regime on space activities.

      However, COPUOS is not the forum to negotiate military issues. This statement is clear in its mandate which is aimed at:

      international cooperation in the peaceful exploration and use of outer space and carrying out its mandates to maintain close contact with governmental and non-governmental organizations concerned with outer space matters, to provide for the exchange of information relating to outer space activities and to assist in the study of measures for the promotion of international cooperation in those areas. 732 

      The practice in this Committee has shown that it would be difficult to introduce military issues in its debate. COPUOS is provided secretariat support by the Office for Outer Space Affairs, which itself does not deal with military issues. However, the Conference on Disarmament, which is more specialized in military question receiving secretariat support from the Department for Disarmament, Geneva Branch, has already had an Ad Hoc Committee on the Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space (PAROS).

Table IV.2.1: Structure of Civil and/or Military Multilateral Discussion Fora
Characteristics Fora
Year of establishment -1959 -1978*
Current membership -61 full time members
with 2 rotating members**
- 63 full members
- 47 observers
Secretariat -UN OOA -UN DDA
Representation -Three year rotation for each region: African Group, Asian Group, Eastern European Group, Latin American and Caribbean Group, Group of Western European and Other States -Chaired by a different country a month on a
rotating basis
-UN as the Secretary General
-UN official as the Deputy Secretary General
-Other UN officials from DDA
-No voting -Consensus
Working mode -Plenary and subcommittees and
working groups
- Plenary and ad hoc working groups
Location -UN Office at Vienna -UN Office at Geneva
Nature of discussions -Peaceful use of outer space -All aspects of disarmament

      *= The CD originated from the CCD [Conference on the Committee on Disarmament] in 1969, the ENCD [Eighteen-Nation Committee on Disarmament] in 1961, and the TNCD [Ten-Nation Committee on Disarmament] in 1959;**= Cuba and the Republic of Korea rotate every two years with Peru and Malaysia, respectively; CD= Conference on Disarmament; COPUOS= Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space; UN DDA= United Nations Department for Disarmament; UN OOA= United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs.

      In contrast to COPUOS, the Ad Hoc PAROS Committee is neither a permanent body nor a negotiating entity. It was first established in 1982 to examine proposals and initiatives related to the prevention of an arms race in outer space and existing agreements governing space activities in that environment. The transfer of dual-use technologies was not an item of deliberation in this forum. It is not clear that its members would be have wanted to incorporate it in its agenda, thus mixing decisions in their debate of both a civil and military nature. Such a move could further complicate an eventual decision to initiate negotiations on what was considered a purely military matter. Moreover, the question would have to be asked if technology transfer would not be better dealt in other Ad Hoc Committees in the CD, or in an entirely new group.

      In the past, a number of proposals discussed in this body which contemplated the creation of international entities that covered both military and civil matters (such as the monitoring of disarmament agreements and natural disasters or other emergencies from outer space) have not found much support; this was not necessarily solely due to often mentioned issues of sovereignty and delegation of authority, or financial implications: it was also because some member States have strongly argued that civil space matters are to be treated in COPUOS and not at the CD.

      Beyond these more political issues, it is important to note that, although over 80 % of COPUOS members have a member or non-member status in the CD, there exists significant structural differences between these two bodies. The decision-making method and procedure is an example. The nature and scope of representation in either bodies is another: e.g., member States are gathered together under different political and regional groups.

      Both fora, however, have acquired considerable experience in terms of human resources and technical and legal knowledge related to civil and military use of outer space. It follows that these resources could be extremely useful for the international community in an eventual negotiation on outer space, and consideration should be made to use these resources.

      There is no doubt that it would be difficult to strike a balance between civil and political-military aspects of outer space activities. The danger then exists of choosing a legal framework for negotiations which would serve no real purpose, or which would be politically and practically unable to fulfil its statutory duties. This would be counter-productive for co-operation in the field of outer space activities.

      Therefore, there is a need to question if the present mandate of the above-mentioned bodies should be changed in order to properly approach the issue of dual-use outer space technologies; or if yet another negotiating forum should be contemplated to undertake that task. This new forum could be stimulated by a special event in the form of new a negotiating entity as the Ottawa process--which dealt with anti-personal mines. Promoted by like-minded States, this approach could be a viable alternative course of action. This new entity could regroup the UN and government staff who have worked in both the COPUOS and the CD, thus using the experience gained so far in these two bodies, while at the same time addressing the essence of the debate: both military and civil space applications.

D. Is UNISPACE III an Opportunity to Facilitate Technology Transfer?

      Major United Nations meetings related to outer space have been organized since the late 1950s. This is evidenced by the celebration of international space years and the creation of COPUOS and other discussion fora on the peaceful uses of outer space. However, it was not until the late 1960s that the practice of convening special United Nations conferences on outer space matters began. UNISPACE I, which took place on 14-27 August 1968 at Vienna, Austria, was born at the time out of a need to provide a forum:

      for the exchange of experience in the peaceful uses of outer space...to examine practical benefits of space exploration and the benefits of scientific and technical achievements, as well as the opportunity available to non-spacefaring States for international cooperation in space activities, with special relevance to the needs of developing countries. 733 

      UNISPACE I was therefore already an attempt by the international community to ensure access to space activities by a large number of States, although most of the countries today are only consumers of space applications. The conference concluded with a set of recommendations, in particular the proposal to create the United Nations Programme on Space Applications. These recommendations were quite significant, further consolidating an evolving collective thinking about the peaceful exploration of outer space, particularly during a time of important developments on military activities in this area. Notably the signing of the 1967 Outer Space Treaty and the bilateral developments between the United States and the Soviet Union on anti-ballistic missile defence and anti-satellite weapons.

      A little over two decades later, from 9 to 21 August 1982, UNISPACE II was convened in Vienna. This conference covered a larger spectrum of space activities than its predecessor, notably in the area of space science and technology, international cooperation and the role of the United Nations. Nither UNISPACE I or UNISPACE II included any dual-use concern discussions in their mandate. Over 200 recommendations were adopted by consensus. Considerable effort was made in the following years to focus attention "...on a number of issues of importance to promoting the access to and use of space technology by all Member States, particularly for developing countries." 734  This approach is still of actuality. The crux of the matter remains that of knowing how to balance this basic principle with that of the dual-use of outer space technologies.

      UNISPACE III, which took place during 19-30 July, 1999, in Vienna, did not include military or dual-use issues in the discussions of its mandate either, addressing rather other political, scientific, technological, educational, and legal aspects of civil space activities. 735  In view of preparing the 1999 meeting, however, the decision was made to organize specific meetings in different regions of the world (Asia and the Pacific, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia--18-22 May 1998; Latin America and the Caribbean, Concepcion, Chile--12-16 November 1998; Africa and the Middle East, Rabat, Morocco--26-30 October 1998; and Eastern Europe, Rumania--25-29 January 1999).

      In all of these meetings, much discussion was aimed at strengthening international cooperation (see Table IV.2.2) covering three areas of interest to technology transfer. One is a revision of existing mechanisms for international cooperation and the elaboration of new tools for cooperation in space activities. The second is the study of ways and means to increase coordination and cooperation between member States, the United Nations and its organizations, and other scientific-oriented international organization. A third area involved a revision of national legislation related to outer space. This also included ways and means to strengthen adhesion to existing treaties and principles on outer space activities.

      The debate on how and what to address in UNISPACE III shows therefore that this type of event constitutes an opportunity to promote dual-use technology transfer; even though UNISAPACE III only covered civil space activities. This expectation is not so surprising. UNISPACE meetings have shown throughout the years that decisions taken within the framework of such discussions are significant in terms of universal representation. Hence, the more efforts are made towards further structuring and facilitating civil-related transfers via the development of procedures conducive to promoting more transparency and predictability in space matters, the easier it is to address the issue of dual-use technology transfers in security-related fora.

      However, the opportunity was lost in June 1999 to define common criteria on civil matters involving outer space technology transfer, as well as on the development of guidelines which would assist in the identification of concrete ways to:

  • · define and reach consensus on the meaning of the term dual-use outer space technology, as well as agreeing on what could constitute the application of civil space activities as distinct from traditional military activities;
  • · address the role of UNISPACE III in creating an environment to prepare countries to develop preventive diplomacy mechanisms related to dual-use outer space technology transfer; and
  • · provoke new thinking of how to address the issue of technology transfers and to reach decision-makers in order to generate the necessary political will to take actions in the field.

Table IV.2.2: Example of Issues Discussed during UNISPACE III
Potential Subjects
· Status of scientific knowledge on the earth and its environment
· Status and application of space science and technology· · Natural resources and remote sensing of the environment· · · Detection and mitigation of environmental hazards· · · Surveillance of costal degradation· · · Annual global forecast· · · Advances in agriculture· · · Resources planing and management· · · Fresh water uses· · Global positioning system· · · Services availability· · · Improvement capacities· · · New applications· · Space communication· · Basic space science and secondary applications· · · The use of outer space for the production of special material· · · Industrial and commercial applications of secondary applications
· Information needs and globalization· · Research needs· · Application needs· · Geographic Information System
· Strengthening of international cooperation
· Social and economic benefits· · Improvement of economic efficiency of space technologies· · Strengthening of commercial benefits· · Education and capacitation

      Source: "Regional Conference for the Preparation of UNISPACE III," Conception, Chili, 12-16 October, 1998.

      Besides promoting the debate on these ideas, UNISPACE III could also have provided the platform whereby a new impetus towards working in the field of outer space could be stimulated. In this context, part of the debate in preparatory regional meetings concerned a possible new form of improved cooperation among different institutions dealing with outer space matters; notably, the industry, non-government organizations, and space agencies worldwide. At the centre of this debate was the possibility to promote the development of joint actions that could be undertaken with the aim of reenforcing transparency and predictability measures on the end-use of transferred technologies.

      However, it was not possible to convince certain countries of the need to have in-depth discussions on dual-use technology transfer. In the Latin America and the Caribbean preparatory meeting, for example, some countries proposed to debate on the creation of a mechanism aimed at improving international cooperation, but this proposal was rejected by several participating countries. The recommendation approved at the end of the meeting was rather limited in scope, basically referring only to the fostering of cooperation on outer space activities. In conclusion, there was little chance to have an in-dept discussion on dual-use outer space technologies in UNISPACE III, particularly when regional preparatory meetings themselves did not strongly recommend and gave some degree of parity to this item in the Conference agenda. In retrospect, there was no political consensus on the need to discuss the issue.

E. What to Expect from a IV UN Special Session on Disarmament?

      United Nations Special Sessions on Disarmament (SSOD I through III) have been a significant thermometer for the need to promote changes in the political philosophy of arms control and disarmament during the last two decades, even though all three SSODs were organized under different political intensity of the Cold War environment. In 1978, for example, SSOD I took place during a moment of particular nuclear confrontation tension and an increasing level of arms build-up between the then two superpowers and their respective military alliances. SSOD I was therefore concluded with a:

      Programme of Action [which] contains priorities and measures in the field of disarmament that States should undertake as a matter of urgency with a view to halting and reversing the arms race and to giving the necessary impetus to efforts designed to achieve genuine disarmament leading to general and complete disarmament under effective international control. 736 

      The priorities established in all SSODs included disarmament of weapons of mass destruction (nuclear, chemical and biological), conventional weapons and the reduction of arms forces. Considerable efforts made since the first SSOD both on the bilateral and multilateral levels have led to a number of agreements effectively diminishing and/or eliminating the number of strategic and theatre nuclear weapons of the United States and the Soviet Union/Russian Federation. After the end of the Cold War, significant achievements have been made on nuclear weapons tests and free-zones, in chemical disarmament and personal landmines. In addition, the Biological Weapons Convention has gained much attention in the late 1990s and efforts are under way to strengthen it. Furthermore, it is likely that the next major multilateral negotiation will deal with the production of weapons fissile material. The word today is quite different in international security terms from that of the Cold War years.

      While the debate is open on whether or not SSODs have had some direct influence in the actual course of these disarmament efforts, it is certain they have been very useful in further structuring the present international machinery related to international security and disarmament. The work of the First Committee, the Disarmament Commission, and the Conference on Disarmament were clarified as complementary deliberate and negotiating bodies, aimed at being used more effectively. In addition, the creation of learning and research institutions such as the Department for Disarmament Fellowship Programme and the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research provided a more diversified source of information on international security matters for the international community, particularly for developing countries.

      The fundamental theme of SSODs has clearly been so far that of hiding mankind from the possibility of nuclear confrontation. It must be recognized that some of the initiatives stimulated by these special sessions have been successful. However, the priorities established as an ultimate goal of these special sessions--the elimination of the danger of nuclear war and general and complete disarmament, as well as a number of other objectives of these meetings, have not been achieved. What could then a new special session, SSOD IV, bring both to the philosophy and the practice of international security and disarmament that would merit discussion on dual-use outer space technology transfer? Could a new SSOD establish the ground work of a future international world order or outer space matters would play a significant role?

      The fact that the Cold War is now defunct would not make a fourth UN SSOD necessarily easier to reach consensus on issues which were not dealt with in the past. Nor would it provide, a priori, an adequate forum to discuss outer space issues in detail. What is certain, though, is that SSOD IV could contain an agenda which would address international security from a different angle than its predecessor. Its mandate could be conceived in a way so as to take advantage of the unique political environment that a rare occasion of a turn of a millennium provides to introduce innovative and daring ideas on how to deal with international security in the future.

      SSOD IV could therefore address ways and means to safeguard the integrity of international agreements; apprizing the efficiency of selective control regimes would be sine-qua-non in coming up with a new and reinforced sense of direction in dealing with international relations. Central to this debate is the notion that the international community should no longer depend on the old "action-reaction" philosophy to deal with technology transfer issues. A safe international order is one that major events in the security area are either predictable, or the relevant tools to cope with such events are in place and functioning well. This calls for new normative changes such as:

  • providing the political guidance for the creation of an international body to better orient international cooperation and dual-use technology transfer;
  • stimulating efforts to reach consensus on an appropriate forum to negotiate such an agreement; and
  • introducing a new formula to group countries in security-related negotiating fora.

      Undoubtedly, the reasoning of regrouping counties under Cold War blocs has for long been seriously questioned. However, while this practice has already somewhat changed in the post-Cold War environment, and a more balanced and structured approach that is internationally recognized and accepted should be adopted to help countries to abandon old rules of procedures and habits. In particular, effort should be made to eliminate the separation which exist between EtSC States and other countries in the international community. SSOD IV would represent an opportunity to create new fundamental policies defining the way the international community would interact in the future, including with respect to the issue of the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies. The major problem is that there has been no consensus on the need to organize such a meeting in the near future. SSOD IV is therefore clearly not an option to advance the debate on the dual-use outer space technologies for the neear future.

      The opportunity of the turn of the millennium has nevertheless inspired many to perceive a need to prepare a more reflection-oriented United Nations General Assembly. Now known as the "Millennium Assembly", the 55th General Assembly was another event that was expected to be an opportunity for States to reevaluate and renew their support to the United Nations in this new era. The events of the 55th Assembly culminated in the "Millennium Summit" presided by Heads of States, which ensured the high political nature of decisions made at that occasion. While outer space technology transfer was not mentioned in debates prior to the Assembly, various aspects of international security such as disarmament and non-proliferation were, including the issue missile notification.

      There was ample time to bring the outer space technology transfer issue to the fore front of discussions, particularly, since this issue is intimately linked to key components of the security debate today and expected also well into the next century. Namely the development of offence and defensive ballistic and cruise missiles, as well as access to economic, industrial and scientific benefits derived from the development space launching capabilities and other outer space technologies. The Millennium Assembly could therefore have been an opportunity to make new and bold decisions on the direction of technology transfer. It could have been a useful platform to instigate political will to start changing the direction of events on this matter from current selective control-oriented system towards a bilaterally-based and multilaterally-agreed system. The Russian Global Control System and the now known as the "missile resolution" represented therefore the genesis of a debate which needs maturity and more collective interest among possessors and non-possessors alike.

      Yet, as in the case of UNISPACE III, there will be no significant changes, let alone a meaningful debate, if there is no political will to maintain interest in this issue after the Millennium Assembly, discuss the matter with the willingness of identifying possible areas of consensus and presenting it in the interest of the exploration of outer space by both EtSC and EmSC States. It is political will, or lack there of, that will dictate the course of events.

General Conclusion

      The transfer of dual-use outer space technologies lies at the centre of security and commercial debates both in regional and global terms. At present, technology transfers in this area are dealt with in an ad hoc and selective manner. In some instances, this creates problems of a political, military, and economic nature. It is clear from the discussion in this paper that there is no single answer to the problems emanating from such transfers, or transfer denials. Despite its complexity, this issue has to be addressed by the international community at large, with the view of creating a safer international security environment, balanced by a policy based on a search for the benefit for all and fair economic competition, and not based on the benefit for a few under selective control regimes. The crux of the matter is not so much to reach consensus on these objectives, but rather on how to materialize such an egalitarian vision.

      There is therefore a need to develop a strategic planning for the international community to embark on daring new approaches, designing new ways of dealing with dual-use outer space technologies. It is imperative that a collective reflection be made highlighting the principal arguments which could stimulate the position of States to support a policy of co-operation as opposed to one of confrontation. Central to this reflection is the necessity to articulate a clear description of the practical means which could allow such a policy shift, the foundation of which should be based on the principle of building an environment of confidence and security among States. No doubt, the objectives of such strategic planning calls for efforts to be made from both EtSC and EmSC States alike.

      A number of steps could be taken by the international community in a progressive manner in order to implement these goals: three areas of concern should be mentioned in this conclusion.

1. Dual Use Technologies, Applications and Services

      In the rocketry field, for example, one possible step entails a efforts to lessen the interest in the development of BMs by any States. This is a formidable task, not least because it is not possible to disinvent what has been created so long ago, used often in different conflicts as a weapon of war or as a tool in peace time to threaten the existence of entire societies, but also because it would be naive to think that States would give up the possession of BMs without reevaluating existing security arrangements, undertaking sustainable dialogues between neighbours and regional groups of countries, and developing regional security mechanisms to address, in a preventive way, security concerns.

      It is also important not to narrow down this discussion to military considerations alone. It is also necessary to consider civil commercial development and exploitation of all aspects of dual-use outer space technologies: that it to say, rockets, Earth observation/communication and other satellite applications, as well as rocket and satellite tracking systems. Hence, the outer space technology transfer debate is also, fundamentally, a haves and have nots issue, which needs a revitalized approach to address it.

2. Control Regimes

      Another step to be contemplated is the reaching of agreements between States as one approach, and that of a multilateral agreement as a second one, aiming at ensuring the transfer of dual-use outer space technologies while curbing destabilising military use of space technologies. Clearly, defining acceptable military use of outer space technologies, such as in peace operations, is essential. In this context, an international agreement which would codify a new mechanism defining the role and utility of a future World Space Organization, where technology transfer could be addressed in a more universal and credible manner than at present with selective control regimes, would stand a chance of being practical and indeed useful to foster international cooperation while enhancing security. Not doubt, traditional thinking and practice with regards to technology transfer lack, for the most part, the requirement of end-use certificates, as well as verification and enforcement procedures. This state of affairs is not conducive to fostering security. Thus, collective actions to be agreed upon in future agreements related to outer space technology transfer should constitute a new approach which would provide the necessary confidence that States need in order to enter a new phase in addressing the security/commercial relationship of outer space activities.

3. The Relationship between EtSC and EmSC States

      Any strategic plan in the dual-use outer space field cannot afford proposing structures which would regroup only representatives of space-faring States: fundamental mistakes such as the application of outdated thinking to solve outdated or new problems could be counter-productive to the efforts at stake. Such initiatives would run the risk of further segregating EtSC States from other counties. It is therefore essential that major events in international security such as United Nations General Assemblies, and a future SSOD IV, be used to generate political will to improve the chances of ensuring a new approach to technology transfers which would need universal adhesion.

      The integration of co-operation in the industrial sector to foster development opportunities would no doubt prove fruitful to improve political relations among StSC and EmSC States. Hence, global meetings such as these two that often facilitate the launching of innovative policies are rare opportunities which the international community should use to lay the grounds for the present visionary strategy. It is by fertilizing the grounds on which outer space technology transfer takes place that any efforts to build CSBMs could stand a real chance not only to be functional, but also to constitute a meaningful long-lasting endeavour.

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