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U.S. Space Force Releases Its First Doctrine Document

Aug. 11, 2020 (EIRNS)—The U.S. Space Force released its first doctrine document, entitled “Spacepower: Doctrine for Space Forces,” dated June 2020, yesterday. According to Air Force Magazine, it solidifies the interdependence of civil, military, intelligence, and commercial players as the U.S. tries to return to the Moon and push farther to Mars, as well as protect its satellites and other spacecraft from attack and support a growing number of private-sector ventures past the Earth’s atmosphere. “Preserving freedom of action in space is the essence of military space power and must be the first priority of military space forces,” it says.

The doctrine document argues the Space Force needs seven kinds of expertise to achieve its missions. They include:

• Orbital warfare, or moving systems on orbit as well as firing weapons for offense and defense

• Electromagnetic warfare

• Cyber

• Intelligence

• Battle management

• Space access and systems sustainment

• Engineering and acquisition.

“Given the development and maturation of space power, and what we’re facing from a strategic environment, operational environment, it’s really starting to force us to have to look to build more depth,” Col. Casey M. Beard, commander of the Space Delta 9 operations organization at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, told reporters Aug. 10.

“Orbital warfare” is just what it sounds like. The document defines it as “Knowledge of orbital maneuver as well as offensive and defensive fires to preserve freedom of access to the domain. Skill to ensure United States and coalition [sic] space forces can continue to provide capability to the Joint Force while denying that same advantage to the adversary.”

Closely related are “Space Electromagnetic Warfare” and “Space Battle Management.” The first involves denial of the enemy‛s access to space by electronic means while the second is about achieving mission accomplishment. The service prefers to operate via control of the electromagnetic spectrum, but clearly physical destruction of an enemy satellite is not excluded. “Because of the prevalence of remote operations, the [electromagnetic spectrum] is the primary conduit through which the control and exploitation of the space domain is achieved,” the document says.

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