Buzz Aldrin: Space Force – One Giant Leap in the Right Direction
Astronaut Buzz Aldrin, 88, was there when man first set foot on the Moon in 1969. On Friday, August 10, he endorsed President Trump’s idea of a Space Force. Aldrin’s take is that it is a “giant leap in the right direction.” But the Space Force isn’t as much about hunting for ‘little green men’ as it is about military readiness, although exploration will surely be a component. Hence, the President’s directive to work out the details and get it up and running. Thursday, Vice President Pence laid out the Pentagon’s steps to its inception.
Creating a new branch of the military is a daunting task, and ultimately it rests with the Congress to give the okay. They must amend Title 10 of the US Code for it to become a reality. But the Pentagon has come up with four steps to implementation, which they hope to complete by 2020.
According to Defense News, the four steps are:
- Create U.S. Space Command as a new unified combatant command.The new organization will be led by a four-star general and will establish the space war-fighting doctrine, tactics, techniques and procedures.
- Build an elite group of space officers called “Space Operations Force,” which will be comprised of all of the services and “grow into their own cohesive community” similar to that of special operators, Pence said. “They will support the combatant command by providing space expertise in times of crisis and conflict.”
- Develop the Space Development Agency, a new joint procurement arm for space products. Pence said space acquisition had become too bureaucratic and that U.S. ability to innovate had been stifled by “needless layers of red tape.” The Space Development Agency, by contrast, would leverage prototyping and experimentation to achieve technology breakthroughs.
- Name a civilian to the post of assistant secretary of defense for space.This official will be charged with making the Space Force a reality, oversee the service’s expansion and would report to the secretary of defense. “This leader will be key to a critical transition to a fully independent secretary of the space force.”