Space force

Reviews | “Space Force officers must think like Navy officers if they are to succeed”

However, the Air Force’s birthplace Space Force (painfully and unexpectedly, for some) might not be able to completely escape the influence of its parent service without outside help.

The Space Force Motto Semper Supra – “Always Above” – ​​suggests that staff should look to the “common fight”, not the stars, to ensure American security and prosperity. Even its new logo, meant to symbolize the Space Force’s independent identity, is bound to honor the other services and looks to the Air Force’s “core values” — not its own — to guide its conduct. These decisions aren’t necessarily bad, but they do suggest that Air Force cultural pressure still looms large in Space Force. The Starfleet Amendment could be the little push the Space Force needs to fully become its own service.

There are many reasons why the Space Force should adopt the Navy rank structure, especially for officers. It is necessary to clearly distinguish Space Force personnel from Air Force personnel if they continue to serve in the same military department, as do Navy and Marine Corps personnel. Culturally, science fiction and popular entertainment have tied naval rank to the space realm in the American imagination. However, the most important reason why the Space Force uses the rank of the Navy is that Space Force officers must think like Navy officers if they are to succeed in the great power competition of the 21st century – a competition that is already occurring and will become increasingly critical in the future. Only a maritime-inspired space force can bring the promise of space to the American people and to humanity as a whole.

Three recent policy documents support the House’s decision. The Department of Defense’s Defense Space Strategy, released in June, states that the Space Force (and other services) should aim to maintain space superiority, provide space support to national and joint operations, and ensure space stability. . Ensuring superiority and stability at sea is a classic Navy mission, and the strategies used to develop great navies can also be used in space. The definition of space power strategy as the “sum of a nation’s capabilities to leverage space for diplomatic, informational, military and economic activities in peacetime or wartime to achieve national objectives” is also very comfortable for a maritime strategist. Defense space strategy would be well served by a maritime-inspired space force.

Two other documents support the Starfleet Amendment even more than the Defense Space Strategy Is it that.

On July 23, the National Space Council released a bold, whole-of-government, and distinctly maritime-inspired strategy aimed at making America wealthier and safer by expanding the economic use and colonization of space. from low Earth orbit to the Moon and beyond. in “an expanding sphere of commercial and non-governmental activity in which increasing numbers of Americans live and work in space.”

Stating that “this vision requires a secure international environment conducive to U.S. commercial growth,” he argued that the U.S. Space Force’s responsibilities included ensuring unfettered access to space and that its ” Activities such as space transportation and logistics, energy, communication, navigation and space domain awareness, have dual-use value for all space sectors – civil, national security and commercial.

On July 28, the Space Force also released the 2020 State of the Space Industrial Base Report, a comprehensive and actionable strategy signed by Chief of Space Operations, General Jay Raymond, intended to execute both space strategy defense and the strategy of the National Space Council.

Among its recommendations, the study of the industrial base argued that the Space Force must “articulate its role in securing commerce and protecting civilian infrastructure in the space domain” and proposed that “this role should emulate the role of the United States Navy in securing the maritime domain” – at the less to some extent. It is clear that many great Space Force minds believe that the nation needs even an embryonic Space Navy to achieve its space strategy.

Congress must take the lead and mandate Navy rank, a move the Space Force may feel compelled to avoid, to cultivate a culture capable of executing the nation’s space strategy and securing a new American century. prosperity, security and human development in the world.

With the blessing of Congress, the Space Force Admirals will create a service that promotes space development nationwide and views the protection of space commerce as a mission equal to war. The Senate and House jointly passing the Starfleet Amendment would boldly declare that Americans want Space Force to be both strong and wise enough to win great-power competition in space through strategic—yet peaceful—development that will both secure America and enrich the world. Manage!

Brent Ziarnick is an assistant professor of national security studies at the Air Command and Staff College at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama. The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Air University, the Department of Defense, or the United States government.