"Since the race to place a man on the moon was won, the United States has enjoyed a dominant advantage in space, both economically and militarily. From that time, practically every administration pursued policies and programs that ensured dominance of space. This was possible because only the wealthiest countries could afford space technologies and access. Now, even commercial companies (both foreign and U.S. owned) have access to space capabilities. The United States military has transformed in ways that make space dominance essential to the conduct of operations. Information superiority provided by space-based intelligence and communications assets allows commanders information dominance over adversaries. Global positioning systems allow for precision strike capabilities in difficult access areas as well as visibility on blue forces. Space-based broadband assets provide logistics and medical capabilities. While U.S. military access to space is essential, military commanders voice concern that allowing U.S. adversaries access to state-owned or commercially produced space-based products could wipe away the information advantage it has learned to rely on. Information superiority, a hinge pin of U.S. military strategy, like facets of the U.S. economy, could be crippled by attacks to key space-based assets. The United States Government has used a 'right time' approach toward space policy. This paper explores how the United States has used policy to maintain the lead, both economically and militarily, in space."
Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC): http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/