Test for war in space: Russia blows up satellite

Russia has admitted to testing an anti-satellite missile by shooting down one of its own disused satellites. The resulting cloud of at least 1,500 pieces of debris forced the crew of the ISS space station to seek shelter in their spacecraft. Nasa and the Esa have criticised Russia for creating additional space debris, but commentators focus on the message behind the move.

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Die Welt (DE) /

The next Pearl Harbor could be in space

Space has long since become the operational base of modern warfare, notes Die Welt:

“Satellites take care of reconnaissance and provide military communication, remote control of drones, navigation and tracking. He who can switch off their enemy's satellites renders him blind and almost incapable of military action. This latest test makes us realise that the Pearl Harbor of the 21st century could be in space. Anti-satellite weapons are highly explosive and their use in war is comparable to a nuclear first strike. Whoever carries out the first strike basically forces the attacked nation to retaliate.”

La Croix (FR) /

Moscow demonstrating desire for power on all fronts

Russia's destruction of an old satellite should make Europeans wary, warns Jean-Christophe Ploquin, editor-in-chief of La Croix:

“The event underscores how comprehensively Russia is continuing its quest for power. ... The Kremlin wants to expand its sphere of influence and reconquer the territories lost after the collapse of the Soviet Union. On the European continent it is waging a hybrid war using several levers: the military, cybernetics, the media, politics, energy, migration. ... Such activism brings back bad memories. The Europeans must close ranks.”