This week the U.S. Space Force released a 64-page “Doctrine for Space Forces” called Spacepower. The doctrine describes the mission for the Force and reveals that troops assigned to the service will be called “space warfighters” who will first and foremost “”protect, defend, and project United States spacepower.”

It does have an almost theatrical sound to it.

The document, dated June 2020, was produced just months after the creation of the Space Force in December 2019.

According to a press release, the document covers “a series of topics to include unique aspects of the space domain, the relationship between national and military spacepower, and the employment and development of space forces…(this) foundational doctrine serves as a key guidepost for the ethos and values of the nation’s newest armed service.”

It defines the space domain as “the area above the altitude where atmospheric effects on airborne objects becomes negligible.”

The document goes on to explain “an understanding of spacepower must start with an appreciation of the space domain itself. Within terrestrial domains, atmospheric density and pressure resist all forms of motion by generating viscous friction. This force is referred to as drag and requires the continuous expenditure of energy to overcome.”

However, in space, there’s really no drag, which means spacecraft can go really fast without propulsion. As a result, it’s possible to complete an Earth orbit in as little as 90 minutes depending on orbital altitude. Just think about that, if enemy weapons are being aimed at targets in the United States.

Per the capstone document, the cornerstone responsibilities of the Space Force are to:
1. Preserve Freedom of Action
2. Enable Joint Lethality & Effectiveness
3. Provide Independent Options

Core competencies are listed as:
1. Space Security
2. Combat Power Projection
3. Space Mobility & Logistics
4. Information Mobility
5. Space Domain Awareness

And if you or someone you know is thinking of signing up, the Space Force is looking to staff up the following disciplines:

1. Orbital Warfare
2. Space Electromagnetic Warfare
3. Space Battle Management
4. Space Access & Sustainment
5. Military Intelligence
6. Cyber Operations
7. Engineering / Acquisitions

The U.S. Space Force has already produced a couple of very slick recruitment videos. The first one starts with a young man gazing at the night sky with the voiceover saying “Some people look at the stars and ask ‘what if?’ Our job is to have an answer.”

The video closes with a rather thought-provoking idea that “Maybe your purpose on this planet…isn’t on this planet.”

The second video features primarily images of women in various roles, and a female narrator.

Even in the futuristic Star Trek universe, Captain James T. Kirk was saying space was the final frontier.

Spacepower acknowledges “Humanity has long been drawn to gaze upward and ponder the mysteries of the heavens” in the drive to “push back the dark edges of the map and demystify our frontiers.”

We shall see what lies beyond those dark edges.

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