Much of the public debate about space militarization has involved organizational structures: Should the United States create a separate (i.e. sixth) military service, or elevate the mission now carried out by the US Air Force Space Command, making it into another unified combatant command? Proponents of the first idea want to use a Marine Corps model – the Marines are a separate service, even though under the administrative umbrella of the US Navy – while supporters of the second vision support the US Strategic Command (Stratcom) model. But this structural discussion obscures a more important question: How can the United States best protect its interests in outer space without creating a space arms race that could actually jeopardize US long-term economic and national security?
Should the United States create a separate (i.e. sixth) military service, or elevate the mission now carried out by the US Air Force Space Command, making it into another unified combatant command?
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