A new rising power, China, is looking for places where it can outflank America. China has gone all-in for space, and it’s not shy about space militarization, either. China’s sometime-ally Russia is also trying harder, and the United States, despite the recent creation of the Space Force, is frankly behind.
Beijing just tested a hypersonic missile that can deliver nuclear weapons and a Fractional Orbital Bombardment System that can place those missiles in hard-to-notice paths or even (though this would violate the Outer Space Treaty) in full orbit.
China is researching how to build very large structures in space that could support solar-power beaming or military uses. Russia recently destroyed a satellite with an anti-satellite weapon in a demonstration of power that has created a debris cloud threatening the International Space Station, Starlink satellites and more. And both Russia and China are continuously attacking US satellites.