Headline RoundupFebruary 20th, 2024

SpaceX's $1.8 Billion Classified Contract Deepens Company Ties With US Agencies

Summary from the AllSides News Team

SpaceX entered into a $1.8 billion classified contract with the United States government in 2021, the Wall Street Journal (Center bias) reported on Tuesday.

Details: The article cited “company documents viewed by The Wall Street Journal” to report that the company led by Elon Musk is expanding its operations with national-security customers through its “Starshield” satellite program. The report states that the $1.8 billion contract, the exact details of which are unknown, illustrates “a growing interdependence between SpaceX—a dominant force in the space industry—and the national-security establishment.” The report stated that the documents reviewed did not state the name of the government customer, but the money from the contract is “expected to become an important part of its revenue mix in the coming years,” according to the Wall Street Journal. SpaceX also won a $70 million in August 2023 to provide communication services to Pentagon partners.

Key Quote: The Wall Street Journal quoted SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell stating at an event last May, “I can say that there is very good collaboration between the intelligence community and SpaceX.”

How the Media Covered It: The initial findings from the Wall Street Journal were covered mildly by right-rated and center-rated outlets. AllSides was unable to find coverage from a left-rated outlet as of 5:00 P.M. CST Tuesday. Coverage of the contract noted reports from last week that Russia is developing technology that could potentially employ a nuclear detonation in space to disrupt or destroy a range of satellites.

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