According to Mr Pence, about 60,000 people are now working on space security in the USA, across various branches of the military and intelligence services. With the Trump Administration's rush to militarize space, however, that may be a temporary deal.
"The National Space Council is making recommendations to the president to essentially begin with establishing a unified space command, much in the way that we established a Special Forces command", he said. 'That treaty...doesn't ban military activity, ' Pence said. Pence promised that the new troops will be established no later than 2020.
He named United States adversaries as Russian Federation and China, and said potential space threats include anti-satellite weapons, airborne lasers, "highly threatening on-orbit activities and evasive hypersonic missiles".
The idea has taken on a life of its own at Trump's rallies.
Speaking at a meeting of the National Space Council on Tuesday, Mr Pence said, "Space is a war-fighting domain, just like the land, air and sea, and America will be as dominant there as we are here on Earth".
"That will be the project of the space force going forward".
"First, we'll create a new unified combatant command, the United States Space Command, that will establish a dedicated chain of command for Space Force operations, ensure integration across the military and develop the doctrine, tactics and procedures of space warfighting in the 21st century", Pence said. "And there are a number of steps that will be launched in the very short term but that will ultimately lead to the launch of a Department of the United States Space Force in the next national Defense Authorization Act", Pence said. The White House has said it will release plans for the Space Force early next year. The Secretary of the Defense will then be expected to create a joint organization to detangle regulation and speed up space technology development.
"In the first phase (space forces) will look like the other, already existing types of Armed Forces". "The time has come to stop studying the problem and start fixing it".