Trump has directed the US military to establish a Space Force | Tech News

The US armed forces may take to space

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Donald Trump has announced that he has directed the Pentagon to create a new branch of the US military called the Space Force.

This announcement came during an 18 June meeting of the US Space Council in which President Trump signed his third Space Policy Directive. It lays out instructions to better track traffic in space, including which agencies will monitor spacecraft and satellites in orbit, and to minimise new space debris.

Trump said during the meeting that the Space Force will be a “separate but equal” branch of the US military. This would be the first new US military branch since the Air Force began in 1947.

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Congress considered and rejected a similar proposal last year for a standalone space corps to deal with threats in orbit, but Trump rekindled the idea in a March speech, when he described it as “like the army and the navy, but for space, because we’re spending a lot of money on space.”

The Air Force Space Command, started in 1982, is currently in charge of operating and protecting military satellites. It’s not yet clear if this new Space Force will simply transfer the existing Space Command duties to a new group, or whether it will take on additional responsibilities.

Read more: War in space may happen soon, but it won’t be what you expect

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