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American Achilles Heel: GPS

Many of us have made note of this before, but it's worth your attention again, because the dynamics of reliance have not changed. In fact, our reliance on GPS systems for our National Security have predictably grown. As the Associated Press reports, a recent glitch shows how much the US military relies on GPS.

A problem that rendered as many as 10,000 U.S. military GPS receivers useless for days is a warning to safeguard a system that enemies would love to disrupt, a defense expert says.

The Air Force has not said how many weapons, planes or other systems were affected or whether any were in use in Iraq or Afghanistan. But the problem, blamed on incompatible software, highlights the military's reliance on the Global Positioning System and the need to protect technology that has become essential for protecting troops, tracking vehicles and targeting weapons.

"Everything that moves uses it," said John Pike, director of Globalsecurity.org, which tracks military and homeland security news. "It is so central to the American style of war that you just couldn't leave home without it."

What gives us military technological primacy also gives us what comes as close to a technician's worst nightmare - a single point of failure.

Our reliance upon GPS systems in our weaponry is immense. And it is also the great equalizer. China and Russia haev long known this, which is why they have been developing anti-satellite systems with a fervor equal to our development of the next generations of 'bunker buster' missiles.

GPS is our Achilles' heel. Defending our space-based assets is paramount.

This is why those who claim "I will not weaponize space" are irresponsible - either through ignorance or reckless abandon. All assets, wherever they are based, require defense. And strong defense is in itself the greatest deterrent. Strong defense is a language all its own, requires no speeches, and is nearly impossible to misinterpret.

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