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President Trump once again floats idea of adding 'Space Force' to US military

Posted: 1:30 PM, May 01, 2018
Updated: 2018-05-02 01:15:31Z
President Trump once again floats idea of adding 'Space Force' to US military

President Donald Trump once again floated the idea of adding a "Space Force" as a branch of the US military on Tuesday at the White House.

Trump's comments came as he presented the Army college football team with the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy, annually awarded to the best college football team among Army, Navy and Air Force.

"You will be part of the five proud branches of the United States Armed Forces: Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and the Coast Guard," Trump said, addressing the Army football team. 

"And we're actually thinking about a sixth, and that would be the Space Force. Does that make sense?" Trump said. "... because we're getting very big in space, both militarily and for other reasons, and we're seriously thinking about the Space Force."

Tuesday wasn't the first time Trump has floated the idea of a military branch dedicated for fighting wars in space. In March at a speech in San Diego, Trump broached the idea for the first time publicly.

"We may even have a 'space force,'" Trump said, according to Scripps station KGTV in San Diego. "We're doing a tremendous amount of work in space. I said maybe we'll need a new force. We'll call it 'the space force.'"

"Our service members will be vital to ensuring America continues to lead the way into the stars," Trump continued. "We're way, way behind."

The Washington Post points out that the United States signed the Outer Space Treaty in 1967, promising not to test weapons in outer space or establish military bases on the moon or other celestial bodies — though it points out that there is no enforcement mechanism in place to stop the US from doing so.

Alex Hider is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @alexhider.