US general assesses role of ‘commercial space’ in Ukraine conflict

Private firms have successfully aided Kiev, Space Force chief John Raymond says

Commercial players in the aerospace industry have been “helpful” to Kiev during the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the head of the US Space Force has said.

“My first observation I’d say is that space is important. And we have certainly seen that in this conflict,” General John Raymond, chief of US space operations, said on Tuesday at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado.

“And I would also say that commercial space has been very important in providing capabilities that have been helpful to Ukraine.” 

Raymond also said that the US military uses space capabilities “each and every day.” 

“Today, nothing we do as a joint force that isn’t enabled by space,” he stated. “And it is a huge force multiplier.” 

Elon Musk’s SpaceX said last month that it had delivered 15,000 kits of its Starlink satellite communication system to Ukraine, which, according to reports, helps Ukrainian troops aim artillery at Russian positions.


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President Vladimir Zelensky told Wire in June that Starlink was “very effective” in maintaining internet access in embattled cities.

Reports in the media have also claimed that the US has been using classified and commercial satellites to provide Ukraine with intelligence on Russian troop movements.

“We routinely and have now for weeks been sharing information and intelligence about Russian units, both at sea and ashore,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby told CNN in May.

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