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Fri, Mar 15, 2019

DoD Stand Up Space Development Agency

'Space Force' Draws Continued Criticism From Air Force Leadership

The Space Development Agency ... which is sometimes referred to as the "Space Force" ... has been officially established by the Department of Defense, and a director for the agency has been named by the Pentagon.

Defense News reports that it has obtained a memo signed March 12 by acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan (pictured) standing up the new office. The SDA will fall under the direction of Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering Mike Griffin, and Fred Kennedy has been named as the SDA director. Kennedy is currently director of the Tactical Technology Office, which falls under the purview of DARPA.

“The SDA will define and monitor the Department’s future threat-driven space architecture and will accelerate the development and fielding of new military space capabilities necessary to ensure out technological and military advantage in space for national defense,” Shanahan wrote in the memo. “The SDA will unify and integrate efforts across the Department to define, develop and field the novel and innovative solutions necessary to outpace advancing threats.”

But outgoing Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson remains very critical of the establishment of the "Space Force". In January, she wrote a memo stating that the SDA "appears to replicate existing (missions) already ordered by Congress ... Until the Space Development Agency has a uniquely identifiable mission that cannot be accomplished by current organizations, the plan should not move forward,” she wrote.

While Wilson has resigned to take a position in academia, her criticism will carry weight with whomever is named as the next Secretary of the Air Force, who will have responsibility for the agency if it is approved by Congress.

(Image from file)

FMI: Source report, Source report

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