US Space Command's first big war game is already under way

news
A threat-representative ICBM target launches from the Ronald Reagan Ballistic Missile Defense Test Site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic ofthe Marshall Islands March 25, 2019. (DoD photo)

A secretive war game that examines combat in space kicked off this week in Alabama.


The Schriever War Game, bringing together several military commands, allies and the nation's intelligence agencies, focuses on a rival nation in Europe starting a "multi-domain" war, a military term that combines traditional land, sea and air combat with space battle and cyberattacks.

The unnamed rival — the military never says Russia or China when it comes to war games — is "seeking to achieve strategic goals by exploiting multi-domain operations," Air Force Space Command said in a news release.

The event is the first test of the new U.S. Space Command, established in Colorado Springs last month. The command brings together the space efforts of all military services and takes the lead when combat hits orbit.

It will also test how well America can work with its allies; Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Great Britain were set to join in.

It's a different kind of war game. The Army regularly throws similar events involving thousands of troops maneuvering on the ground. The Air Force holds exercises in Nevada using dozens of dogfighting planes.

The space war game uses just 360 troops and civilians meeting in the conference rooms of the Alabama-based Air War College.

It does examine a big war, though, with "full spectrum of threats across diverse, multi-domain operating environments to challenge civilian and military leaders, planners and space system operators, as well as the capabilities they employ."

While the numbers of troops involved are smaller than that of other war games, the changes that could come from the exercise could be much bigger.

In addition to training troops for combat, war games like the Schriever exercise are also used to determine what America needs if it winds up in a similar situation.

That means the Schriever War Game could result in new gear in space and on the ground to deal with war in space.

That is likely needed. The U.S. hasn't really thought about combat in orbit until the past decade. U.S. satellites have few protections against enemy attacks, and America has few tools to respond, apart from missiles that are primarily designed to take out intercontinental ballistic missiles.

The vulnerability in space comes at a time when the American military has never been more dependent on the services provided through satellites.

From GPS-guided bombs to satellite communications gear in Humvees, American troops can't fight on the ground or in the air without satellites .

While the existence of the war game is public, don't expect to hear results.

The outcome of the Schriever game, including whether the bad guys won, is highly classified.

———

©2019 The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.). Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

It has been a deadly year for Green Berets, with every active-duty Special Forces Group losing a valued soldier in Afghanistan or Syria.

A total of 12 members of the Army special operations forces community have died in 2019, according to U.S. Army Special Operations Command. All but one of those soldiers were killed in combat.

In Afghanistan, Army special operators account for 10 of the 17 U.S. troops killed so far this year. Eight of the fallen were Green Berets. Of the other two soldiers, one was attached to the 10th Special Forces Group and the other was a Ranger.

Read More Show Less

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Documents from the Pentagon show that "far more taxpayer funds" were spent by the U.S. military on overnight stays at a Trump resort in Scotland than previously known, two Democratic lawmakers said on Wednesday, as they demanded more evidence from the Defense Department as part of their investigation.

In a letter to Defense Secretary Mark Esper, the heads of the House of Representatives Oversight Committee and one of it subcommittees said that while initial reports indicated that only one U.S. military crew had stayed at President Donald Trump's Turnberry resort southeast of Glasgow, the Pentagon had now turned over data indicating "more than three dozen separate stays" since Trump moved into the White House.

Read More Show Less
Sigourney Weaver as Ellen Ripley from 1979's 'Alien' (20th Century Fox)

Editor's Note: This article by Gina Harkins originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

QUANTICO, Va. -- Marines who spend much of their day lifting hefty ammunition or moving pallets full of gear could soon get a helping hand.

The Marine Corps is close to signing a deal to test an exoskeleton prototype that can help a single person move as much as several leathernecks combined.

Read More Show Less
NEC Corp.'s machine with propellers hovers at the company's facility in Abiko near Tokyo, Monday, Aug. 5, 2019. The Japanese electronics maker showed a "flying car," a large drone-like machine with four propellers that hovered steadily for about a minute. (Associated Press/Koji Sasahara

'Agility Prime' sounds like a revolutionary new video streaming service, or a parkour-themed workout regimen, or Transformers-inspired niche porno venture.

But no, it's the name of the Air Force's nascent effort to replace the V-22 Osprey with a militarized flying car — and it's set to take off sooner than you think.

Read More Show Less
In this March 12, 2016, file photo, Marines of the U.S., left, and South Korea, wearing blue headbands on their helmets, take positions after landing on a beach during the joint military combined amphibious exercise, called Ssangyong, part of the Key Resolve and Foal Eagle military exercises, in Pohang, South Korea. (Associated Press/Yonhap/Kim Jun-bum)

Task & Purpose is looking for a dynamic social media editor to join our team.

Our ideal candidate is an enthusiastic self-starter who can handle a variety of tasks without breaking a sweat. He or she will own our brand's social coverage while working full-time alongside our team of journalists and video producers, posting to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram (feed, stories, and IGTV), YouTube, and elsewhere.

Read More Show Less