Pence launches Space Force, says United States needs to prepare for 'next battlefield'

Evarado Alatorre
Agosto 9, 2018

"In his inaugural address to the nation, President Trump declared that the United States stands 'at the birth of a new millennium, ready to unlock the mysteries of space, '" Pence said.

The creation of the Space Operations Force.

"Both China and Russian Federation have been conducting highly sophisticated "on-orbit" activities that could enable them to maneuver their satellites into close proximity with ours, posing unprecedented new dangers to our space systems", Pence said.

Outlining details in a visit to the Pentagon for a separate Space Force - proposed by President Donald Trump in June - on Thursday, Pence said the new military service is necessary for ensure America's dominance in space.

In a speech to the Defense Department, he said that countries such as Russia, China, North Korea and Iran are pursuing ways to "bring new weapons of war into space itself".

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence waves to guests after speaking during the Department of Homeland Security's Cybersecurity Summit in Manhattan, New York, U.S., July 31, 2018.

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For years, the Pentagon has been warning about how space has become a contested domain of war, just like the land, air and sea.

In the meantime, White House officials have been working with national security leaders to aggressively move ahead without Congress.

Former NASA astronaut Mark Kelly says President TrumpDonald John TrumpOhio county finds hundreds of uncounted votes in already too-close-to-call special election Nunes suggested at private fundraiser that GOP majority is needed to protect Trump Ex-Bush spokesman: Trump shouldn't talk in his "loopy ways" to Mueller MORE's plan for a military branch with jurisdiction over outer space is "redundant" and "wasteful". This agency will streamline the process of ensuring the Space Force has the tools and technologies it needs when it needs them.

To establish the sixth branch, the White House would need the approval of Congress.

Trump's Space Force plan would go even further, creating a new branch, with both a new member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and a political appointee serving as a service secretary.

Pence pointed to Russia's development of airborne lasers to disrupt space-based systems and China's successful demonstration of how a missile can track and destroy satellites. "Both nations are also investing heavily in hypersonic missiles that are created to fly up to 5 miles per second and at such low altitudes that they could evade detection by our missile-defense radars". The U.S. will meet the emerging threats on this new battlefield, he said, and carry on the cause of liberty and peace into the next great frontier. "But history proves that peace only comes through strength". The first step would be to create a US Space Command by the end of the year, a new combatant command that would have dedicated resources, be led by a four-star general, and be tasked with defending space, the way the Pentagon's Pacific Command oversees the ocean.

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