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Space Command thrives in Colorado Springs

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By THE GAZETTE (COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) Published: August 31, 2019

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Tribune News Service) — President Donald Trump on Thursday announced the continuation of the Colorado Springs-based U.S. Space Command.

"We will now treat space as an independent region overseen by an independent, unified combatant command," Trump said, declaring the decision "a big deal."

It is a big deal for the entire country, as we must keep up with and surpass the efforts of hostile countries racing to militarize space.

We look forward to another big announcement, in which Pentagon officials declare Colorado Springs the permanent home of Space Command. Any other location would weaken the institution by taking it from the environment best suited to host and support military space operations.

As often explained here, Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak region serve as honored hosts of Air Force Space Command – the primary space force of the U.S. Armed Forces – and the Air Force Academy.

The synergy of these major aerospace operations combines with the physical and intellectual assets of neighboring and contiguous operations at Peterson and Schriever Air Force Bases, Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station, Northcom, NORAD, The National Cybersecurity Center, Space Foundation, the National Space Symposium and more. They form a cohesive community prepared culturally, educationally and strategically to counter threats to our safety and sovereignty.

Our "space central' view of Colorado Springs was confirmed by U.S. Rep. William McClellan "Mac" Thornberry, R-Texas, in an editorial board meeting this summer.

"I don't see another state that combines all of the attributes," said Thornberry, the ranking Republican and former chair of the House Armed Services Committee.

"Fortunately, Denver is not far from Colorado Springs, so I kind of see it as one ecosystem. That's what you have to have. We talked about the educational and philanthropic aspects of this region, but it's the commercial and government assets – especially regarding space – where it all needs to work together. Obviously, there's a long history here, with Air Force Space Command and such, and all of that stuff wraps up to give you the lead."

As stated in multiple articles, letters and verbal statements, major business and political leaders throughout Colorado stand ready to support U.S. Space Command for the long haul. When Colorado hosts military operations, it provides the roads, security, schools and other services the base commanders and personnel need.

Though Space Command would operate at its best in Colorado Springs, politicians in far less synergistic locations want Pentagon officials to move it for the benefit of their constituents. It's a ridiculous proposition. A move to Alabama, California or Florida would not promote the cause of achieving the highest and best national defense. It would mostly benefit politicians in one of those states at a cost to national security.

Colorado and Colorado Springs host Space Command with great success. Space Command personnel live here and like it. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. This community looks forward to a Space Command partnership long into the future.

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(c)2019 The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
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