Trump Directs Pentagon to Create Military Branch to Dominate Space

The Air Force's X-37B space plane

The Air Force's X-37B space plane

"Very importantly, I'm hereby directing the Department of Defense and Pentagon to immediately begin the process necessary to establish a space force as the sixth branch of the armed forces".

Russian Federation has pledged severe repercussions if President Donald Trump's order to set up a new, space-oriented military branch violates a treaty banning nuclear weapons in the cosmos.

During a speech at a meeting of the National Space Council, Mr. Trump announced plans to protect American interests in space through monitoring commercial traffic and debris, initiatives he said would be "great not only in terms of jobs and everything else, it's great for the psyche of our country".

'The president told a U.S. general to create a new Space Force as 6th branch of military today, which generals tell me they don't want, ' Senator Bill Nelson tweeted. Where's General Dunford? General?

"Both Russia and China have acknowledged they are developing - or have developed - counter-space capabilities", US Navy Adm. Cecil D. Haney said in 2015.

After declining to seek a base realignment and closure round in its latest budget request, the Pentagon is weighing new approaches to evaluating installations and dealing with excess property, according to a top Defense Department official.
Congress must act to create a new branch of military service, but will the power of the military lobbyists win the day? In the USAF there is a space command, which manages satellites that provides support and space forces, and cyber systems.

Secretary of Defense James Mattis at that time disapproved of the creation of a sixth branch of the military on the ground that "we are focused on reducing overhead and integrating joint war-fighting efforts".

But the question of the extent of military uses and what role (s) may be performed by Trump's Space Force is still unknown. It's not clear if the president's comments Monday were meant to override or influence that study.

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"The US military relies heavily on space based operations, including communications, command and control, intelligence, surveillance, and all facets of operations", said Francona. It also required the Secretary of Air Force to increase the amount and improve the quality of its civilian and military space cadre.

In a March document outlining the review, the Pentagon said it has already made organizational changes to beef up the stature of the space force, but is reviewing others. And Trump can't simply demand that it is created.

He also promised that the USA would "return Americans to the moon" and would eventually send people to Mars. Protecting those space-based assets also is critical given the development of anti-satellite weapons by China and Russian Federation.

Trump envisioned a bright future for the USA space program, pledging to revive the country's flagging efforts, return to the moon and eventually send a manned mission that would reach Mars.

Trump said Monday that the United States' space program had been bogged down by politics and rising costs.

'The essence of the American character is to explore new horizons and to tame new frontiers'.

Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson, has also said the U.S. needs to embrace a new policy and make it clear that if command and control or warning satellites are targeted, the United States "would consider that to be a hostile act" and respond.

Trump also declared that "there's no place like space". "We've always led. We've gone way far afield for decades now". "As long as it's an American rich person, that's good, OK? We'll save a little money, and they can beat us, and we're taking full credit for it, don't worry about it".

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