The US government are never too many steps away from a “Star Wars” initiative. Back in the ‘80s when Ronald Reagan was calling the shots, he didn’t want “mutually assured destruction” to be America’s only defence against nuclear war, since he described this as a “suicide pact,” so his solution was to go even bigger and more destructive than nukes and called on scientists to give him weapons that were more powerful than nuclear arms.

So, these scientists came up with lasers and particle beam weapons and missiles that would be sent into space and prepared to launch.

The media derided this plan and what Reagan had called the “Strategic Defense Initiative,” they called “Star Wars.” The movies were very popular at the time. Now, the new Reagan, sitting US President Donald Trump, wants to militarise outer space and send soldiers into orbit as part of a “space force” initiative.

The first weapon taken to space was a gun designed to kill Russian bears

The very first weapon that was taken into orbit by astronauts was a handgun that was powerful enough to kill Russian bears. That was just in case, when they re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere, they landed in a Siberian forest and had to shoot their way out. But now, the race by Trump of America, Putin of Russia, and Xi of China to militarise outer space is all too real – and the snickering at the mention of a “space force” is masking what should be fear.