French oil major Total has discontinued the acquisition of Occidental Petroleum’s assets in Ghana in an effort to preserve its financial flexibility. The story of the purchase and sale agreement between the companies started back in 2019 with Total swooping in for Anadarko’s African assets […]
US President Donald Trump signed a memorandum on Tuesday, authorizing the Department of Defense to create a Space Command, a new organisational structure within the Pentagon that will have overall control of military space operations.
The command will also be tasked with accelerating technical advances and finding more effective ways to defend US assets in space, including the vast constellations of satellites that US forces rely on for navigation, communications and surveillance.
Trump’s order is separate from his oft-stated goal of creating a “Space Force” as an independent armed service branch, but it’s considered a step in that direction. Critics of a Space Force have said it is misguided and money should instead be spent on initiatives and programmes on earth, including education and improving access to healthcare.
Tuesday’s move will launch a long and complicated process, requiring the Defense Department to pull together various space units and agencies from across the military services into a more coordinated, independent organisation, the Associated Press reported earlier on Tuesday, citing two unnamed US officials.
The US Air Force’s existing Space Command would be a key component of the new joint entity, raising space to the same status as US Cyber Command.
The move will recreate a US Space Command, which existed from 1985 to 2002. It was disbanded in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks so US Northern Command could be established.
The Space Command’s functions were absorbed by US Strategic Command, and the Air Force retained its lead role in space through Air Force Space Command.