Published: Sun, August 12, 2018
World News | By Sandy Lane

US’s ‘Space Force’ takes rivalry with China, Russia out of this world

US’s ‘Space Force’ takes rivalry with China, Russia out of this world

So, before we can "have the Space Force", as Trump put it, the White House will have to convince lawmakers that the USA really needs it.

Why? Pence cited China and Russian Federation as potential threats to American satellites that warranted the creation of defense systems as a response.

Sen. Bill Nelson is among the lawmakers opposed to the idea.

Pence also attempted to assuage concerns about the enormous cost of establishing the new force, saying, "To be clear, the Space Force will not be built from scratch, because the men and women who run and protect our nation's space programs today are already the best in the world", he said.

But if you have visions of joining the military - now or under a future Space Force - and strapping on a jet pack, NPR's Geoff Brumfiel is here to crush your dreams.

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Stressing the need for a special space force, Pence said both China and Russian Federation were actively looking for technologies that could interfere with or disable USA space-based systems. These would include a secretary of the Space Force, which will eventually reach the same status as the secretary of the Army or Navy and have a seat on the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Mr. Pence's comments Thursday, along with a detailed Pentagon report explaining how the Space Force will be handled, put an end to that speculation and demonstrate that military leaders - at least publicly - are now in step with the White House on space policy.

Mattis had previously opposed the creation of a separate military branch focused on space, writing to Rep. Mike Turner of OH in July of 2017 that he did "not wish to add a separate service that would likely present a narrower and even parochial approach to space operations".

Part of the announcement for 2020 involved an email from Trump's campaign team calling on supporters to help choose one of six logos for the futuristic Space Force. 'We need to address space as a developing, warfighting domain and a combatant command is certainly one thing that we can establish, ' he said. Another option (bottom left) has the same background as NASA's logo, but features the silhouette of a space shuttle along with "SPACE FORCE". "The Space Force will grow the world's most capable national security space workforce". At the time, Defense Secretary James Mattis was against the idea of a sixth branch.

In June, President Trump "directed the Department of Defense to immediately begin the process necessary to establish a Space Force as the sixth branch of the armed forces", Pence said in a speech at the Pentagon.

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Trump has repeatedly clarified his desire that his nation be unsurpassed in space supremacy, and he is willing to ignore the 1967 Outer Space treaty and the 1979 Moon treaty to do so.

"There is a threat out there but it's being handled by the US Air Force today". The Air Force became the fifth branch of the US armed forces in 1947.

Meanwhile, on the "Daily Show", Trevor Noah was disappointed by how boring Pence made the space force sound, comparing the vice-president's serious-toned speech with Trump's previous declarations on the project.

Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday confirmed plans to establish a Space Force by 2020. He said Beijing and Moscow have been developing missiles, lasers and other technologies with the aim of targeting USA satellites.

"We've got to be able to compete, deter and win", Mattis said.

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