Jim Sciutto is CNN's chief national security correspondent, meaning he knows a thing or two about military strategy and warfare. And right now, he believes the United States is engaged in — and losing — a war most citizens don't even know is taking place.
He calls it "the shadow war," which also happens to be the title of his latest book. The moniker alludes to the covert nature of this war, which Sciutto says Russia and China are waging against the U.S. online, under the Earth's oceans — and in space.
"Star Wars is here today," he told Salon in a recent interview.
Sciutto went on to elaborate on the nature of this space warfare and what might happen if America's enemies decide to deploy their own space weapons.
"Russia has kamikaze satellites that can destroy U.S. satellites in orbit," he told Salon. "China has kidnapper satellites that could snatch them out of orbit. Why? Because our military and our civilian life is more advanced in space than anybody, but also more dependent on it."
"Smart bombs aren't smart without satellites," he continued. "Drones don't fly. We don't have nuclear early warning without satellites... you have a whole host of ways to undermine and even paralyze the U.S. if you were to take away those space assets."
New Arms Race
The U.S. might be in a vulnerable position right now, but it does have options, Sciutto argued in another interview, this one for the Recode Decode podcast.
"We have those capabilities, but we haven’t deployed them to the degree that China and Russia [have]," Sciutto said. "And that’s a decision that has to be made: Is that the best deterrent? Or does that lead to a space arms race? That’s part of the calculation that has to be made today."
More on space warfare: 25 Governments Are Meeting Right Now to Prevent a Space Arms Race