The U.S. Space Command will work in tandem with the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) as a single entity.
Speaking at an Aug. 20 meeting of the National Space Council outside Washington, D.C., retired Navy Rear Adm. Joseph Maguire, the acting director of national intelligence, provided initial details of the arrangement.
“After months of analysis and deliberations, the intelligence community and Department of Defense have agreed to align U.S. Space Command and the NRO into a new, unified defense concept of operations at the National Space Defense Center,” Maguire told the audience.
The two organizations would become “the center of gravity for defending our vital interests in space,” Maguire said, predicting a “unified structure to integrate the intelligence community with the Pentagon’s plans for space defense.”
Also speaking at the conference, Marine Corps Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, announced that the newest branch of the armed forces – U.S. Space Force – would begin operations Aug. 29.