HALAWA HEIGHTS, Hawaii (KHON2) — ‘Semper Supra,’ is the official song of the Space Force and means ‘always above’ in Latin.
The military’s youngest branch activated its first command component in the Hawaiian Islands on Tuesday, Nov. 22.
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The Space Force was established in 2019, but a command component was activated for the first time on Tuesday. There are no laser beams or warp-speed space ships — the Force operates and defends critical infrastructure in space that everyone relies on.
“We can now present, where appropriate, Space Force units and equipment to the combatant command and command and control it through the service component,” said U.S. Space Force chief of space operations Gen. Chance Saltzman.
Adm. John Aquilino — commander of all U.S. military forces in the Indo-Pacific region — said activating the Space Force in the Islands first was not an accident. Four of the five top national security threats lie in the Indo-Pacific.
“Whether it be the People’s Republic of China, the Russians, the North Koreans or violent extremists.”
Adm. John Aquilino, U.S. INDO-PACIFIC COMMAND COMMANDER
“And, I have asked and this team spends every single day to prevent conflict in this theater,” Adm. Aquilino said.
The commander of the INDOPACOM Space Forces said a strong military presence itself deters conflict. The brigadier general added that America is not alone.
“We are fortunate to have like-minded space faring allies and partners in this region,” Brig. Gen. Anthony Mastalir said. “Staunch supporters of a free and open Indo-Pacific and committed to a rules-based international order.”
He had a message to the Space Force guardians as members of the newest service branch.
“As of today, you are the guardians of INDOPACOM. You are outranked and outnumbered by every other component here. I don’t care,” Brig. Gen. Mastalir said.
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Officials said there are less than 100 guardians on Oahu, but they are just getting started and are excited for the period of growth to come.