I sincerely doubt that America has broken this treaty from 1967. Nor that our leaders intend to.
Hopefully a space based arms race is out of the question.
The Outer Space Treaty represents the basic legal framework of international space law. Among its principles, it bars states party to the treaty from placing weapons of mass destruction in Earth orbit, installing them on the Moon or any other celestial body, or otherwise stationing them in outer space. It exclusively limits the use of the Moon and other celestial bodies to peaceful purposes and expressly prohibits their use for testing weapons of any kind, conducting military maneuvers, or establishing military bases, installations, and fortifications (Article IV). However, the treaty does not prohibit the placement of conventional weapons in orbit and thus some highly destructive attack strategies such as kinetic bombardment are still potentially allowable. The treaty also states that the exploration of outer space shall be done to benefit all countries and that space shall be free for exploration and use by all the states.
The treaty explicitly forbids any government to claim a celestial resource such as the Moon or a planet. Article II of the treaty states that "outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, is not subject to national appropriation by claim of sovereignty, by means of use or occupation, or by any other means." However, the state that launches a space object retains jurisdiction and control over that object. The state is also liable for damages caused by its space object.
Being mostly an arms-control treaty for a peaceful outer space use, it offers insufficient and ambiguous regulations to newer space activities such as lunar and asteroid mining. It therefore remains under contention whether the extraction of resources falls within the prohibitive language of appropriation or whether the use encompasses the commercial use and exploitation. Seeking clearer guidelines, private companies in the US prompted the US government and legalized space mining in 2015 by introducing the US Commercial Space Launch Competitiveness Act of 2015. Similar national legislations legalizing extraterrestrial appropriation of resources are now being replicated by other nations, including Luxembourg, Japan, China, India and Russia. This has created a controversy on legal claims for mining for profit.
Responsibility for activities in space
Article VI of the Outer Space Treaty deals with international responsibility, stating that "the activities of non-governmental entities in outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, shall require authorization and continuing supervision by the appropriate State Party to the Treaty" and that States Parties shall bear international responsibility for national space activities whether carried out by governmental or non-governmental entities.
As a result of discussions arising from Project West Ford in 1963, a consultation clause was included in Article IX of the Outer Space Treaty: "A State Party to the Treaty which has reason to believe that an activity or experiment planned by another State Party in outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, would cause potentially harmful interference with activities in the peaceful exploration and use of outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, may request consultation concerning the activity or experiment.