Skip to main content

U.S. targets 2020 for the creation of a Space Force

In a speech before the Department of Defense at the Pentagon today, Vice President Mike Pence outlined the broad contours of the new Space Force that the Trump Administration wants to create as the sixth branch of the U.S. military.

Emphasizing the need to both further militarize and privatize space as a new war-fighting domain, Pence stressed that the new branch of the military is targeted for a 2020 implementation date. The administration is pushing for $8 billion in new space spending.

“While other nations increasingly possess the capability to operate in space, not all of them share our commitment to freedom, private property and the rule of law,” said Pence. “As we continue to carry American leadership in space, so also will we carry America’s commitment to freedom into this new frontier.”

Pence cited threats from North Korea, Russia, China and Iran to the safety of the U.S. space program.

Newer threats include the Chinese government’s 2007 launch of a satellite-destroying missile and the development of hypersonic missiles that can evade U.S. missile defense capabilities. The Chinese government has set up a separate division within its own military to address space as a war-fighting domain, Pence said. “Our adversaries have transformed space into a war-fighting domain already.”

“It is not enough to have an American presence in space. We must have American dominance in space,” Pence said quoting the president. “What was once peaceful and uncontested is now crowded and adversarial.”

To advance its goals of creating the new Space Force, the Trump Administration had commissioned the Department of Defense to issue a report on the necessary steps to create the new military branch.

The creation of a new branch of the military — the first since the Air Force was created in the wake of World War II in 1947 — could require a significant reorganization of the Pentagon. And some officials within the military and national security communities fiercely oppose the idea. The Air Force in particular is opposed to the idea, because it might lose key responsibilities. The proposal would also need Congressional approval.

In a report that will be issued later today, the DOD outlined four steps.

The first is the creation of a United States Space Command that will coordinate the nation’s space-fighting capabilities. Pence likened it to the special operations command established in the eighties that provided unified command and control capabilities for mobilizing terrestrial air, sea and land forces. “This new command structure for the physical domain of space, led by a four star flag officer will…. develop the space warfighting doctrine and tactics of the future.”

As part of the space plan, the Department of Defense will also create a new space operations force that will be “an elite group of joint war fighters specializing in the war-fighting domains of space,” according to Pence. They’ll support the space combat and command and carry out space missions.

Third, a new joint organization called the Space Development Agency will be created to develop new technologies for the space force. “While our adversaries have been busy weaponizing space, we have been bureaucratizing it,” Pence said. He pointed to the creation of the intercontinental ballistic missiles and the Navy’s nuclear fleet as examples of American military innovation and achievement from past initiatives.

(It’s a good thing he didn’t bring up the Air Force’s “half-a-trillion dollar drone boondoggle” of a new fighter plane.)

Finally, the process of creating the new organization will require oversight, which will include the creation of a new civilian position that will report to the secretary of defense, Pence said. That position will be called the assistant secretary of defense of space.

“Just as we’ve done in ages past, the United States will meet the emerging threats on this new battlefield,” Pence said. “The time has come to establish the United States Space Force.”

from TechCrunch


Popular posts from this blog

Android blatantly copies the iPhone X navigation gestures

Google unveiled some of the new features in the next version of Android at its developer conference. One feature looked particularly familiar. Android P will get new navigation gestures to switch between apps. And it works just like the iPhone X.“As part of Android P, we’re introducing a new system navigation that we’ve been working on for more than a year now,” VP of Android Engineering Dave Burke said. “And the new design makes Android multitasking more approachable and easier to understand.”While Google has probably been working on a new multitasking screen for a year, it’s hard to believe that the company didn’t copy Apple. The iPhone X was unveiled in September 2017.On Android P, the traditional home, back and multitasking buttons are gone. There’s a single pill-shaped button at the center of the screen. If you swipe up from this button, you get a new multitasking view with your most recent apps. You can swipe left and right and select the app you’re looking for.If you swipe up o…

Square launches restaurant point-of-sale platform

Square, which has already made its way into retail stores and service-based businesses (think hair salons, massage therapists, etc), is officially getting into the restaurant business with the launch of Square for Restaurants. Square for Restaurants is a point-of-sale system that handles everything from menu updates, floor layouts, employee scheduling, performance tracking to tip splitting.Usually, restaurants have “some old legacy thing or something else,” Square Seller Lead Alyssa Henry told me.“Historically, we’ve not served this customer segment very well,” Henry said. “With Square for Restaurants, we’re excited to finally be able to serve this customer segment and deliver on a couple of key things that are core to Square but also highly valued by sellers of all types.”This new product is designed to be fast, self-serve, elegant and cohesive, Henry said. It also integrates seamlessly into Square’s existing ecosystem that includes Payroll, Capital and more. Given Square’s ownership…

Recapping the TechCrunch China Shenzhen 2018 event

This year we returned to Shenzhen, the Chinese city known as the world’s ‘Silicon Valley for hardware,’ for an event that was packed full of future-looking discussions, innovative startups, experienced founders, VCs and more.We love Shenzhen. Sure, Beijing has Zhongguancun and Shanghai has its international and diverse entrepreneurial community. But Shenzhen has a certain je ne sais quoi, an energy that pervades the entire city. Maybe it’s the great weather or maybe its youth of the place — both the residents and the age of the city itself — but every time we come to this southern city, we’re amazed by the people, projects, and companies thriving here.#Shenzhen, not Beijing or Shanghai, is the forerunner of Chinese innovation, says @ganglu, founder and CEO of TechNode— TechNode (@technodechina) November 19, 2018 This year was no different. From blockchain smartphones to battling robots, from hackathons to VC speed …