GPS shutdown ?

Robert Stratton bob at stratton.NET
Tue Dec 21 07:43:20 CST 2004

It appears that there's a new executive committee for management of the 

 From AVweb (an aviation news service):

Perfect Storm Unlikely, Says AOPA

     When the Bush administration announced changes in GPS policy last 
week, the possibility that GPS could be shut down to deny its use to 
enemy forces or terrorist groups drew the most headlines, and generated 
much GA concern. But there is really nothing to worry about, says AOPA. 
"GPS is absolutely critical to safety of flight," said AOPA President 
Phil Boyer. "This new policy recognizes that, and adds even greater 
protections for civilian use of GPS." Such a shutdown would occur only 
under "remarkable circumstances," an administration official told 
reporters. AOPA notes that in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, 
GPS remained online. AOPA says it worked with the administration to 
draft the new policy and there is nothing in there to threaten GA users. 
"The military has always maintained the option to deny GPS to a hostile 
force within a limited geographical area, and they continue to have that 
option under this new policy," said Boyer. "But now there is a very 
clear directive that this be done without unduly disrupting civilian 
use." The policy emphasizes the critical importance of GPS and says the 
administration is committed to making the system stronger and keeping it 
free of user fees.

...As Oversight Shifts Away From Military

     While the Bush plan expresses concern about GPS security, it also 
shifts responsibility away from the military, creating an executive 
committee to manage the global satellite system that will be co-chaired 
by the Defense Department and the Transportation Department. The policy 
explicitly recognizes the extent to which civilian and commercial 
infrastructure has come to depend on GPS, and states the importance of 
maintaining and upgrading the system. It also reflects concerns that 
GPS's pre-eminence is threatened by the Galileo system, under 
development in Europe. "We take the challenge of Galileo seriously. We 
intend to retain leadership," said Jeffrey Shane, DOT undersecretary for 
policy, Government Computer News reported. The U.S. and the European 
Union are exploring ways to ensure interoperability between the two 
systems, Shane said.

Andre Kesteloot wrote:
> <mailbox:///C%7C/DOCUMENTS%20AND%20SETTINGS/HP_OWNER/APPLICATION%20DATA/Mozilla/Profiles/default/hh3wxv1t.slt/Mail/> 
> - President Bush has ordered plans for temporarily disabling the U.S. 
> network of global positioning satellites during a national crisis to 
> prevent terrorists from using the navigational technology, AP reported 
> on 15 December.
>    A White House announcement said any shutdown would be ordered only in 
> the most remarkable circumstances. The GPS system is vital to commercial 
> aviation and marine shipping.
>    Bush also ordered DoD to plan to be able to disable an enemy's access 
> to the U.S. navigational satellites and to similar systems operated by 
> others. The European Union is developing Galileo, a $4.8 billion 
> undertaking.
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