Space Force: Pence details plans for creation of 6th military branch

Cheryl Sanders
August 12, 2018

Vice President Pence described the White House's plans for a Space Force, a sixth branch of the us military that would be responsible for operations in outer space, in a speech on Thursday.

The U.S. "Space Force" will become a reality by 2020, Vice President Mike Pence and Defense Secretary James Mattis promised Thursday, laying out an ambitious timeline to set up the first new branch of the armed forces in almost 75 years and making the case that Americans must prepare for space threats from Russia, China, North Korea and other hostile actors.

He said: "The United States Space Force will strengthen our security and ensure our prosperity, and it will also carry American ideals into the boundless expanse of space". Initially an assistant secretary of defense for space, this position will be "key to the critical transition to a Secretary of the Space Force in the years ahead", said Pence.

In an interview with MSNBC, former astronaut, Mark Kelly, echoed Schatz's opinion that Space Force is a "dumb idea". Emotions ranged from confused, to shocker, to straight out hysterical- and now, it just seems like a straight-up competition for who can have the most clever response to the Space Force logo idea.

"The time has come to establish the United States Space Force".

Pence's remarks was timed to coincide with the release of a Pentagon report outlining the steps needed to create a Space Force, something it does not have the power to do on its own.

The US is a member of the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, a document which represents the basic legal framework of global space law.

The early version of the U.S. Air Force existed as the U.S. Army Air Corps, an aerial warfare sector of the U.S. Army.

"Creating a new branch of the military is not a simple process". The Air Force became the fifth branch of the US armed forces in 1947. This force will draw from across the military to provide space expertise in times of crisis and conflict, Pence said.

Trump's Space Force has stirred plenty of controversy and debate since the President first publicly entertained the idea during a speech in March 2018, when he told USA service members that his "new national strategy for space recognizes that space is a war-fighting domain, just like the land, air and sea".

"That may drive a militarization of space", she said.

"Initially the Department will recommend that the Air Force Space Command commander be dual-hatted as commander of the unified command", the report said.

The Russian Space Forces, a branch of the Russian Aerospace Forces, is a military group for space operations that develops military and integrated satellite systems.

Military support for a Space Force is limited. Russian Federation has also tested a missile that could be used to track and destroy satellites.

"Space Force" has become one of many polarizing issues of Trump's presidency, with many questioning the need for its existence. Echoing President Donald Trump's rhetoric from two months ago, Pence declared the group would be "separate from and equal to the five other branches" of the military.

Rep. Mike Rogers, Alabama Republican and one of Congress' most outspoken Space Force proponents, said it's past time for the move forward. "And so we will", Pence said.

Pence announced that the United States will allocate $8 billion for the space force.

The vice president mentioned four major, fundamental steps that the US government will take to create a Space Force.

Other reports by iNewsToday