Trump Signs Directive to Establish Space Force Overseen by Air Force

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On February 19, U.S. President Donald Trump signed Space Policy Directive 4 (SPD-4), laying the foundation for a new Space Force planned to be under the administration of the Department of the Air Force. The directive states that the Space Force will initially be under the direction of the Air Force and will be led by an undersecretary of the Air Force for space and a four-star general as the Space Force chief of staff. Centralizing all space-related operations into one service, civilian and military personnel currently working on space operations in other branches may also be reorganized under the Air Force. According to an administration official, the process will move “fairly slowly, focusing on the headquarters functions to begin with.” With the directive to be submitted to Congress in the following weeks, the Trump administration hopes to fully establish the new service by 2020.