US to establish “Space Branch” of armed forces by 2020

In a speech to the Pentagon on 9 August, Vice President of the United States Mike Pence announced that the US Department of Defence will establish a sixth branch of the armed forces – the US Department of the Space Force – by 2020. Various affiliated command and joint organisations will also be created. The announcement follows a seven-week review by the Department of Defence, and comes as Russia and China develop sophisticated new weapons capable of operating in outer space.

The full text of the Vice President’s speech is available here.