At a meeting of National Space Council meant to transfer space responsibilities from military to civilian hands, president Donald Trump surprised attendees by ordering the top U.S. military officer to launch a new branch of the military in space.
He added, "The essence of the American character is to explore new horizons and to tame new frontiers".
"This is a giant step toward inspiring future generations and toward reclaiming America's proud destiny in space", Trump said in a statement announcing the pal, which he had talked about before.
"You will be part of the five proud branches of the United States armed forces: Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and the Coast Guard", Trump said. Unfortunately, because space is one of the 11 other missions they have, it is always going to be subordinate, but worse it's going to be a pay-for, which is what's happened over these years. The head of NASA said the agency strongly supports Trump's position "forging a sustainable and focused space policy that strengthens American leadership". "I can imagine the only Space Force being Trump's fanfic Guardians of the Galaxy".
The Air Force now oversees numerous military's space activities, such as the experimental X-37B spacecraft.
Defense Department spokeswoman Dana White said Pentagon officials immediately began to evaluate the White House's Space Force proposal.
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Sweden and South Korea get things underway today, and with Germany suffering defeat to Mexico on Sunday, Group E is wide open. The Swedes later advanced by eliminating Italy in a play-off.
In somewhat rambling remarks, Trump began by saying current USA employment levels were the best "in recorded history" and blaming current immigration problems on Democrats, saying "we have the worst immigration laws in the entire world" and that ongoing issues could be resolved "very quickly if the Democrats come to the table".
It's unclear how Trump's space military will be regarded by other nations.
"Thankfully the president can't do it without Congress because now is NOT the time to rip the Air Force apart".
The policy calls for providing a safe and secure environment in orbit, as satellite traffic increases.
The move, which Mr. Trump tentatively endorsed three months ago despite strong objections from senior civilian and uniformed military leaders, is the culmination of extensive criticism on Capitol Hill of longstanding procurement and strategic lapses affecting the U.S.'s space programs. It sets up new guidelines for satellite design and operation to avoid collisions and spacecraft breakups.
The meeting convened to promote efforts to streamline the regulations around commercial space activities, from earth imaging to communications satellites to rocket launches. "They will work together with American industry to implement a state-of-the-art framework for space traffic management - but don't let [the regulations] get too out of control, please".
NASA astronauts Eileen Collins, Terry Virts and Scott Parazynski also spoke, calling for a clear action-plan toward the country's space exploration goals.