President Trump calls on Pentagon to create ‘space force’ as 6th branch of military

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is announcing that he is directing the Pentagon to create the 'Space Force' as an independent service branch.

President Trump said Monday that "we are going to have the space force" which he deemed a "separate but equal" branch of the military.

President Trump says the United States will "be the leader by far" in space and looks to revive the nation's flagging space program.

The president framed space as a national security issue, saying he does not want "China and Russia and other countries leading us."

President Trump also vowed to soon return the United States to the moon and to reach Mars.

President Trump was joined by Vice President Mike Pence, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, former astronaut Buzz Aldrin and members of his space council.