Space Security: US Space Force to Inaugurate the US Space Forces Europe and Africa Component

Source: EurAsian Times

According to the United States of America’s European Command (EUCOM), the US Space Force will formally inaugurate its Europe and Africa component on 8 December 2023. The component, US Space Forces Europe and Africa (SPACE-EURAF), will become the fourth Space Force component integrated into one of the U.S. military’s regional commands.

Furthermore, Colonel Max Lantz, currently overseeing operations within the USAFE-AFAFRICA, will become the first commander for SPACE-EURAF. Currently, America’s existing space capabilities in Europe are integrated within the US’s Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa (USAFE-AFAFRICA) air component. This arrangement enhances the Space Force’s stature and enables the US Space Force to deliver space-based assistance efficiently.

“The activation of Space Forces in Europe and Africa is a significant milestone in the journey to fortify joint space capabilities within Europe and Africa. US Space Forces Europe and Africa will support various missions, including deterring potential adversaries, responding to crises, and strengthening our alliances and partnership’’, EUCOM commented.

“In the European context, we are capitalising on the fact that US Air Forces in Europe (USAFE) also supports the Africa Command,” General B. Chance Saltzman, Chief of Space Operations of the United States Space Force, clarified during the Air and Space Forces Association’s (AFA) Air, Space & Cyber Conference in September. “Since both functions are managed from the same location, we can efficiently utilise this shared structure, achieving a two-fold benefit to some extent.”

The creation of SPACE-EURAF allows the US Space Force to focus more specifically on space capabilities and operations in the European and African regions, potentially leading to more efficient and effective utilisation of space assets. In addition, establishing SPACE-EURAF reflects a strategic step to enhance the US Space Force’s effectiveness, adaptability, and responsiveness to the evolving space landscape in Europe and Africa.

SPACE-EURAF will become the fourth Space Force component embedded in one of the U.S. military’s regional commands, joining U.S. Central Command, U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, and U.S. Forces Korea.