This book examines the issues surrounding the potential development by the United States of a space-based laser weapons program. It addresses criticisms of the proposed program and considers its future in light of developments in U.S. defense strategy and doctrine.
1. Introduction and Overview of Policy Issues 2. Space-Based Ballistic Missile Defense: An Overview of the Technical Issues 3. Implications of Arms Control Agreements and Negotiations for Space-Based BMD Lasers 4. Space-Based Lasers for Ballistic Missile Defense: Soviet Policy Options 5. Space-Based Lasers and the Evolution of Strategic Thought 6. The Strategic Nuclear Policy of the Reagan Administration: Trends, Problems, and the Potential Relevance of Space based Laser Weapons