A Comparative Analysis with the Air Force and the Future of Space Warfare
This article delves into the origins of the United States Space Force, drawing a comparative analysis with the establishment of the Air Force. It explores the involvement of former President Donald Trump in the formation of Space Force and highlights the perspectives of notable futurists, including General John Hyten, Dr. Peter H. Diamandis, and Dr. Joan Johnson-Freese, on the future of warfare in space. The article also presents the philosophical notion that freedom and stability must be safeguarded in all human endeavors, including space exploration.
The establishment of the United States Space Force in December 2019 marked a significant milestone in the evolution of the U.S. military. Drawing parallels with the birth of the Air Force, this article examines the historical context, President Trump's involvement, and the future prospects of space warfare through the lens of prominent futurists.
Origins: A Comparative Analysis
The formation of Space Force shares similarities with the Air Force's early beginnings. Just as the Air Force originated as a branch within the Army, Space Force emerged from the Air Force, recognizing the growing importance of space as a domain of warfare. Both branches sought to establish their unique operational capabilities and command structures to meet the evolving security challenges of their time.
President Trump's Influence
President Donald Trump played a pivotal role in the establishment of Space Force. Recognizing the need to prioritize space as a strategic domain, he championed the idea of a separate military service dedicated to space operations. With his support and the backing of Congress, Space Force became a reality, reflecting the increasing recognition of space as a critical arena for defense and national security.
Futurists on Space Warfare
Futurists such as General John Hyten, Dr. Peter H. Diamandis, and Dr. Joan Johnson-Freese have provided valuable insights into the future of space warfare. They highlight the growing significance of space as a contested domain and discuss the potential challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
General John Hyten, former Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, emphasizes the need for robust space capabilities to ensure national security. He warns that space is vulnerable to hostile actions, necessitating defensive measures and strategic deterrence. In our modern age of cyberspace and ever-increasing reliance on satellites, Hyten told CBS in an interview, “There is no such thing as a day without space.” When asked what if space were left unsecured and not relied upon, he replied, “What happens is you go back to World War II. You go back to industrial age warfare.” That option is obviously not palatable for the American military.
Dr. Peter H. Diamandis, an influential entrepreneur and space advocate, envisions a future where space becomes a platform for economic growth and resource utilization. He emphasizes the importance of space mining and colonization, with the potential for increased commercial and industrial activities in orbit and on celestial bodies.
As co-founder Daniel C. Ross, M.A., writes, “Where there is trade, there is militarization.” Just as trade routes in ancient times had to be protected and merchants had to have arms to defend themselves against thieves and bandits, securing the heavens above for the celestial markets is no different, as history defines. His book Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think can be found here.
Dr. Joan Johnson-Freese is an expert on space policy and strategy. A professor at the U.S. Naval War College, she has authored numerous books and articles on space security and space warfare, including, Space Warfare in the 21st Century: Arming the Heavens. Dr. Johnson-Freese's research focuses on the military implications of space activities and the need for international cooperation in maintaining stability in space.
Preserving Freedom and Stability
As humans venture further into space, the philosophical principle that wherever humans go, they must be free remains pertinent. Space exploration should embody the values of freedom, republicanism, and stability. However, the reality is that forces opposing these principles may emerge even in space. Therefore, it is crucial to establish policies, agreements, and capabilities that protect freedom, ensure stability, and mitigate potential conflicts in the pursuit of space exploration.
The establishment of the United States Space Force and its parallel with the Air Force signifies the recognition of space as an essential domain for defense and national security. As futurists have highlighted, the future of space warfare brings both opportunities and challenges that demand attention. As creative destruction brings about new industries involving more realms,it is imperative to recognize that the pursuit of space exploration should be guided by the principles of freedom and stability. Wherever humanity goes, the human condition goes with it. As long as we fare in space, we must bring technologies with us to ensure that the basic conduction of human activity is preserved, for it will always be threatened.