U.S. Space Command

United States Space Command

The United States Space Command is the newest service branch. It is a unified combatant command responsible for military operations in outer space, specifically all operations above 62 miles above the earth.

Early iterations of Space Command, generally housed under the authority and control of the Air Force, provided support during the Falklands War, the US invasion of Grenada, the 1986 US bombing of Libya, the US invasion of Panama, and the Gulf War. An early version of the Space Command was created in 1985 to provide joint command and control for all military forces in outer space and coordinate with the other combatant commands. For a variety of reasons, many of these functions were subsequently transferred to the United States Strategic Command.

However, the global space race and a reemphasized focus on space as a war-fighting domain forced the Department of Defense to rethink the need for an independent command. With a growing realization of the emerging and unique nature of the military implications of space development, the need for a separate and distinct Space Command was established. Finally in August of 2019, the U.S. Space Command was established as a full, unified combatant command, with full responsibilities for space war fighting.