The U.S. Space Force’s first foreign base will be in South Korea.
Until Wednesday, the Space Force only had domestic installations, but military leaders said a base in South Korea will allow them to keep a better eye on North Korea.
“The activation here today of U.S. Space Forces Korea … enhances our ability to defend the homelands and ensure peace and security on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia,” said Gen. Paul LaCamera, who commands 28,500 U.S. troops in South Korea.
The Space Force was launched in 2019 under then-President Donald Trump. It became the first new U.S. military branch in more than 70 years.
The South Korean installation will be headquartered at Osan Air Base, which already houses thousands of U.S. troops about 40 miles south of Seoul.
“Just 48 miles north of us exists an existential threat; a threat that we must be prepared to deter, defend against, and — if required — defeat,” said Lt. Col. Joshua McCullion, who will command the new Space Force base.
In recent months, North Korea has tested several ballistic missiles capable of reaching the U.S. or, more easily, South Korea and Japan.
The U.S. has had a military presence in South Korea since June 27, 1950, when it entered the Korean War.
With News Wire Services