Organizing for Defense Space: Balancing Support for the Joint Force and Independent Space Operations

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The United States Space Force is arguably the largest restructure of U.S. defense space organizations since 1960. The reorganization also includes United States Space Command (USSPACECOM), the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Space Acquisition and Integration, and other new organizations. Being new, these organizations face many challenges—and how they address these challenges will define the tools that are available to senior political and military leaders for years to come. Despite the historic nature of the moment, there are lessons to be learned from these organizations’ predecessors. Those lessons highlight that the greatest tension these organizations will face is how to balance the space-based needs of the joint force against independent military operations in, to, and through space.

Author: Russell Rumbaugh, Michael Gleason, Peter Hays