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U.S. Space Force's Indo-Pacific Command activates

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DVIDS
Activation ceremony of the United States Space Forces, Indo-Pacific at which Brigadier General Anthony J. Mastalir will assume command.

The first U.S. Space Force regional component in the country has been activated in Hawai’i under the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command.

The unit will join other local branches focusing on the Pacific.

The Pacific was chosen for its proximity to national security threats within the region, Admiral John Aquilino, commander of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, said Tuesday.

"It's no accident that it happened here in the Indo-Pacific first. The most consequential theater, with four of the five identified national security threats sitting in this theater, whether it be the People's Republic of China, the Russians, the North Koreans, or violent extremists," Aquilino said.

Brig. Gen. Anthony Mastalir commands the unit, and said his role will integrate pre-established air and space components that exist in Hawaiʻi.

"We have a lot of great Guardians that are working not only space surveillance missions, but working satellite communication missions," Mastalir said. "We have Guardians that have been embedded here within the Pacific, within the Pacific Air Force."

Mastalir said the component command is in a growing stage, and will undergo training.

"We've worked really hard over the years to build air and space integration, and what we're going to do now is we're going to double down on that," Mastalir said. "We're going to while we preserve that integration, we're going to work toward integrating space across all the domains."

Space Force was established in 2019. It’s the first new branch of the military in more than 70 years.

Sabrina Bodon is a general assignment reporter at Hawaiʻi Public Radio. Contact her at sbodon@hawaiipublicradio.org or 808-792-8252.
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