Sanctus – The House of Deputies will today debate an opposition motion to split out Space Command from the Air Force to create a brand new service in the Sanctarian Defence Forces dedicated to space security. The Sanctarian Conservative Party motion would see a Spaceguard branch of the SDF created, the first new service within the defence forces since the creation of the Coastguard in 1993.
According to prepared remarks the SCP’s Acting Spokesperson on Homeland Security Rhys Woods, the creation of a service in the SDF focused solely on space security, space defence projects, and satellite surveillance would give the Divine Federation “an early advantage to define defences in space” and would “better position Sanctaria in the decades to come as the regional interest in space increases”. Woods will also argue that the financial impact will be “modest”, with the Spaceguard being resourced by transferred Air Force officers and airmen, equipment, and infrastructure.
It is not expected that the DLP-led government will support the opposition motion, with the coalition described as “tepid” in discussions about increasing the already significant Homeland Security budget. Homeland Security Secretary Nicola Allman is also reported to be unconvinced on the need to create a dedicated space-related service at this time, when the Air Force already exceeds expectations, according to a recent parliamentary committee report, on managing this sector.
The SCP motion does not just come out of nowhere, however. Security analysts and representatives of large companies within the military industry have long advocated for a separate branch of the SDF like the Spaceguard. The most common forecasting from these groups is that increased activity in space, either from independent, national space stations, or even multinational space operations, will eventually result in a need for Sanctaria’s national security interests in the heavens to take a higher priority. Some critics of the DLP-Green defence policy say that “dithering now” will impact Sanctaria’s defensive structures later.
With rumours that the Sanctarian Space Agency will announce by the end of the year their intention to launch the initial stages of a permanent, and manned, national space station by 2025, there will be pressure on Secretary Allman and her colleagues in government to re-evaluate their priorities on space defence. Sources within the SSA say that it will take 5-8 years after initial launches for a space station to be up-and-running, and with a manned space station in orbit, Sanctarian space defences will need to be in a better position then they are now, SCP insiders have claimed.
GWEN COPLEY, National Security Correspondent