Fellow Americans, we live in a magnificent country. 3.8 million square miles smack in the middle of North America spangled in steadfast colors. So grand, in fact, that a hegemonic hands-on-the-waist global posture simply isn’t enough. Consider all of the children not under our care. After all, the only problem with the remaining 196 countries on earth is that they aren’t these glorious United States. They merely require purification.
As our mission of unrefined altruism continues here on earth, there remains a final frontier worthy of our benevolent bootprints: the universe.
In February of this year, internet memedom exploded with Starship Trooper Space Marine’s stamped in Ol’ Glory trouncing potential foes in the great beyond. Trump had issued the order to stand up a new, tremendous branch of freedom’s honor guard; the Space Force.
Much to our collective chagrin, neither the duo of Bugs and M.J. nor Johnny Rico was tapped to command the sweeping legions of dusky, iron-clad U.S. Space Marine’s. As a consolation, we got some insights into their mission statement.
“The United States Space Force will ensure that our nation is prepared to defend our people, defend our interests, and to defend our values in the vast expanse of space and here on Earth with the technologies that will support our common defense for the vast reaches of outer space,” Pence said at the National Space Council meeting Tuesday.
If you thought eradicating terror from the face of the earth was ambitious, Trump and company have got news for you. As the blue planets last bastion of ethereal freedoms, and having revolutionized its ability to plant outposts anywhere, the United States government now has the means and charge to make the skies safe for democracy.
Four times in a single sentence, Vice President Pence reiterates the defensive nature of this move by the executive. As if a bloated and burgeoning defense budget, a global network of missile defense systems, allied military support, and far-flung strategic positions weren’t enough, Pence seems to be trying to convince us, and maybe himself, that we need the Space Force.
If the Global War on Terror has taught us anything, it’s that this century-old wisdom rings true: “war is the health of the state.” Since its beginning, the U.S. federal government’s budget, width, and breadth have all expanded like the edges of the universe itself. With the new advent of a space-specific military branch, the last legal framework for American universal domination is taking shape. Don’t doubt the lawyer-alchemist’s abilities to conjure links between alien-life and al-Qaeda, extending an already tenuous AUMF to the very stars above.
While hawkish eyes gaze upward, warheads continue pointing outward. It’s not space Muslims or alien life this Space Force functionally guards against, rather the perennial enemies of Russia and China. “The Air Force’s actual concerns center on China and Russia’s ambitions, including current attempts at interfering with communications between satellites and other military machinery, like ships in the Pacific or planes flying over Syria,” says Paul Shinkman of U.S. News’ National Security. Since 2007, U.S. concerns over China’s capabilities to disrupt satellite operations escalated with the launch of their anti-satellite missile. This poses a potential threat to Pentagon satellite-warfare progress. “Our competitors out there have been watching the way we fight over the last 26 years. And they see our asymmetric advantage that very often comes from capabilities in space. They’re looking for ways to deny that to us,” says Air Force Chief of Staff David Goldfein. Evidently, endless conflict has one downside to these cretins.
Overt military action towards the U.S., even if outside the atmosphere, would mean all-out war; and not with cosmonauts. “There’s no such thing as a space war,” Navy Rear Admiral Brian Brown of Joint Functional Component Command of Space admits. “There would not be a war that just stays in space. The minute a conflict extends to space … it starts to affect all domains.” This imparts the Space Force, as a stand-alone military branch, the inimitable strategic purpose of absorbing attacks for subsequent “real battle” in kinetic, conventional environments.
The American military apparatus, backed by some of the world’s most powerful nations, outmatch any potential belligerent to ‘democratic’ dominion. Practically speaking then, “space superiority” in the current climate is a jobs program disguised as muscle for tech protection. “Defense” is the military contractor equivalent of a mafia front and the government’s convenient justification for further military expansion and anticipatory legalese before technological advance requires action.
U.S. intelligence assets in space have and will continue to be protected in virtually the same way. Space Force serves to draw battle lines over the vacuum-sealed space corpse of once-globally cooperative efforts, further militarizing an already fetishized fascistic model of war-corporatism.
Star Wars: The Founders Promise will undoubtedly be the harbinger for further domestic nationalization, too. Without exception, U.S. military action always swells the state’s scope. In an increasingly digitalized world, imagine the implications of fully nationalizing and “securing” satellite and space infrastructure while in its infancy.
Only one ardent liberty stronghold stands between the threat of Martian terrorism and common sense; “Establishment of the Space Force still requires congressional funding and authority, a step Pence said Tuesday would happen soon,” per USA Today.
A chorus of snickering and chaffed elbows ensues. Such hubristic assurance for the passing of military boondoggles through bipartisan channels is Pence’s signal to the world that we’re all missing the joke. From both banks of the Potomac, the quiet refrain of a tragic comedy resounds: “The universe is ours.”