Jeffrey LewisWhat happened to CSRS?

House and Senate Appropriators recently terminated an Air Force program called the Counter Surveillance Reconnaissance System.

CSRS (pronounced like “scissors”) was a ground-based, mobile system designed to use reversible, non-damaging effects to temporarily impair reconnaissance satellites. The system was expected to reach IOC in 2007, but the Appropriators removed the $ 53 M in FY /’05 funding, as the Senate explained in its report, because “subsequent to the submission of the budget the Air Force decided to cancel this program.”

After the House cut the program, the Office of Management and Budget issued an Administration statement of policy. OMB claimed the Administration was “concerned with reductions in critical transformational space programs” and “urges restoration of funding” for CSRS.

So, does DOD want the damn thing or not? A curious reporter with Defense Daily (subscription required) attempted to get to the bottom of the story, reporting:

… when asked about the possible cuts and the Senate/’s claim that the Air Force requested a program termination, service officials scrambled to explain.

Technology developers at Space and Missile Systems Center in Los Angeles and the requirements officials that outlined a need for the program at Air Force Space Command headquarters in Colorado Springs deferred specific questions to headquarters.

After days of discussion and “coordination,” officials at Air Force headquarters simply said they continue to execute CSRS in FY /’04, and that “it is premature to discuss the future of the CSRS program pending resolution of the FY /’05 congressional appropriation.”

I seriously have no idea what is going on here …


Amy Butler, “Fate Of Space Control Program Uncertain As Air Force/’s Advocacy Wavers,” Defense Daily (July 7, 2004) np.

Office of Management and Budget, Statement Of Administration Policy H.R. 4613 – Department of Defense Appropriations Bill, FY 2005 (June 22, 2004).

S. Report 108-284 (2004) 169.