Pence: US Space Command Will Launch Next Week

"Next week we will formally stand up the new unified combatant command that will be known as the United States Space Command", Pence said during the sixth meeting of the newly established National Space Council as he stood beneath the space shuttle Discovery at the National Air and Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va. Raymond, a graduate of Clemson University, is now the commander of Air Force Space Command headquartered at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado.

Joseph Maguire, acting director of national intelligence, said during the council's meeting that the NRO will execute such operations "based on a jointly developed playbook and informed by a series of exercises and war games".

"The U.S. Space Command will be charged with defending our critical space assets from the increasing threats posed by potential adversaries", Donovan said. The annual defense budgets in both the House and the Senate this year included funding for a space military branch.

Speaking at the National Space Council meeting in Virginia, military leaders warned of a growing military threat in space from Russian Federation and China.

While officials praised the launch of Space Command, they also further pushed the larger idea of a new armed service, Space Force, during the meeting.

U.S. Space Command, the Pentagon's 11th combatant command and the first new one in 10 years, will stand up at a ceremony on August 29, according to the U.S. military's highest-ranking officer.

Breaking Defense reported that Space Command will have the authority to direct the National Reconnaissance Office to implement "defensive space operations" should conflict arise in space.

Establishment of the Space Command is an interim step in building a military-branch level Space Force, which must be approved by Congress.

The United States will get a step closer to establishing a space force next week.

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