WASHINGTON — Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday announced the Trump administration is laying the groundwork a new Space Force and eventually a separate military branch, dedicated to space.
While the merits of a new organization are debatable, U.S. national security space systems are vulnerable to a wide array of threats, ranging from cyberattacks and jamming to anti-satellite missiles, according to a Center for Strategic and International Studies report published earlier this year. Russia and China, and to a lesser degree North Korea and Iran, are all threatening America’s military through its dependence on space.
“Given our dependence and that of our allies and partners on space, the loss of critical assets today could prove decisive to our ability to monitor critical events like missile launches or nuclear tests, or to successfully prosecute a military campaign,” retired Air Force Gen. Robert Kehler, the former chief of U.S. Strategic Command, said in the forward to the report. “Urgent action is needed.”
A number of people have said that if Obama had come up with this a lot of people laughing at Trump and Pence wouldn’t be. Fair enough, thought if Obama had come up with it we’d assume an actual plan with strategic objectives. It the administration is actually serious about this, and not just selling campaign gear, I guess we’ll find out soon enough.
President Donald Trump’s re-election team seized on his administration’s push for a “Space Force” on Thursday, pledging to sell branded merchandise to his supporters.
“President Trump wants a SPACE FORCE — a groundbreaking endeavor for the future of America and the final frontier,” read an email from the Trump campaign. “As a way to celebrate President Trump’s huge announcement, our campaign will be selling a new line of gear.”
The letter from campaign manager Brad Parscale then invited supporters to vote on the campaign’s logo for the proposed military branch. The campaign email followed efforts from the Trump administration on the same day to drum up support for the proposal and outline how the Pentagon would take its first steps.
Vice President Mike Pence delivered a speech where he called for the creation of a new military service for space by 2020, building on Trump’s previous calls for one, and Trump issued a tweet on Thursday where he said, “Space Force all the way!”