UNITED STATES—President Donald Trump announced his plan to create a sixth branch of military on June 18. That branch will be called, “Space Force.” The Air force is currently functioning as the space force by handling the military actions in space.
According to reports, the goals of the Space Force would be to fund space based solar power, prevent anti-satellite weapons and to detect missile capabilities.
“I want to also say that when it comes to space, too often, for too many years, our dreams of exploration and discovery were really squandered by politics and bureaucracy, and we knocked that out. So important for our psyche, what’s you’re doing. It’s going to be important monetarily and militarily. But so important for right up here — the psyche. We don’t want China and Russia and other countries leading us. We’ve always led — we’ve gone way far afield for decades now, having to do with our subject today. We’re going to be the leader by far. We’re behind you a thousand percent,” said Trump.
According to the Telegraph, in 2017, the Pentagon was against the idea of a new military branch, where a senior military official stated: “The Joint Staff will work closely with the Office of the Secretary of Defense, other DoD stakeholders and the Congress to implement the President’s guidance.”
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine released the following statement on Monday in response to Space Policy Directive-3:
“NASA strongly supports the White House’s continued bold direction in forging a sustainable and focused space policy that strengthens American leadership. It was my honor today to represent the agency at the National Space Council, where the President announced Space Policy Directive-3 – which will guide critical and much-needed progress for space traffic management.
SPD-3 builds on our continued progress implementing SPD-1, which is galvanizing American space leadership by returning to the Moon with commercial and international partners, and SPD-2, which will create regulatory certainty for entrepreneurs to raise capital to grow the American economy in space.
As we continue to thrive in space, we also have more people launching to orbit, and an increasingly complex universe of satellites overhead. SPD-3 provides guidelines and initiatives to ensure that America is a leader in providing a safe and secure environment as space traffic increases. Common sense space situational awareness and traffic management will be good for our economy and will help provide a more stable environment for the burgeoning space economy.
Reducing the growing threat of orbital debris is in the interest of all nations, and NASA looks forward to working with the National Space Council, the Department of Commerce and other partners on a path forward. SPD-3 and the directives that preceded it, along with the President’s enthusiasm for our nation’s innovative work, are providing a strong foundation for our nation to once again do the big things that will shape a bright future for all of us in space.”
If made official, the Space Force will be the newest military branch since the Air Force was established in 1947. All branches of the military and Congress must approve of the Space Force before it goes into effect.
Written By Madison McKesson and Casey Jacobs