Originally Posted by LuceBianchi
Initially, it would be the air force. In fact, the transition from "air and space force" to "space and air force" is already happening in the USAF.
As for when the space force would split from the air force... "when it becomes clear that an independent space force is more useful than one bound to the air force."
This is why we have a separate air force now. World War II proved that air power is much
more than just supplementing ground forces.
If you want a time frame for this separation, I cannot provide one. The march of science and technology is unpredictable. Any time estimate that anyone
comes up with will likely wind up being horribly inaccurate. For example, we don't have flying cars yet, as was predicted by Back to the Future as happening by 2015... yet we have computers in the palms of our hands. Computers that are approaching our desktops and laptops in power. Back in the 80s, nobody could ever have conceptualized that, let alone thought it would happen in 20 years.
I hope this helps.
Yes, the air force does have a strategic lock when it comes to global air power and so far also into space. But I can not envision the navy setting on there hands if in the future real or imagined. The navy is very good with ships on the sea, and it is not a reach to see ships in space in the future, I can see a space based navy as depicted in all of the wonderful syfy story's we have.
If anything I can see the air force disappear completely and become integrated with the navy for space based operations, but only off planet, or on another world.
For now Navy = Water, local air combat. Air Force=Air, strategic air combat /Space.
In time I can see all branches of the service being integrated into one organization. In fact that is happening right now, but at a slow pace.
AFSC-42153 (1970-1976) USAF