Reports: SpaceX is building spy satellites for US intelligence agencies

Mass surveillance

Published 21 March 2024
- By Editorial Staff
SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, California.

Multiple sources report that Elon Musk’s SpaceX is secretly building a network of hundreds of spy satellites for the US intelligence community.

According to whistleblowers, the system will allow military and intelligence agencies to monitor events and locate potential targets “almost anywhere in the world”.

The contract with the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) is reportedly worth around $1.8 billion and has already been signed for 2021.

Reuters spoke to the leakers. According to the news agency, the collaboration shows that the intelligence community has great confidence in Elon Musk – despite his repeated criticism of the Biden administration.

The low-Earth orbit satellite system will support ground forces and, if successful, is expected to “significantly advance the ability of the U.S. government and military to quickly spot potential targets almost anywhere on the globe”.

The satellites will be able to track targets on the ground and then relay that information very quickly to US military or intelligence agencies.

“In principle, that would enable the U.S. government to quickly capture continuous imagery of activities on the ground nearly anywhere on the globe, aiding intelligence and military operations”, an NRO spokeseperson said.

“No one can hide”

The intelligence community also officially confirms that it is developing “the most capable, diverse, and resilient space-based intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance system the world has ever seen”.

Since 2020, about a dozen satellite prototypes have been developed and, according to sources, expectations are very high for what they can do in “live mode”.

“No one can hide”, says one of the sources.

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