With President Biden's vote of confidence, the Space Force proved it was more than just a Trump-era moonshot. Away from Capitol Hill, the military's sixth branch is slowly developing into its fully-fledged form by recruiting and training personnel as part of its goal to reach 6,500 active-duty members by the end of fiscal 2021. In the latest sign of its progress, the first flight unit comprised entirely of Space Force Guardians graduated from Air Force basic military training last week.
The boot camp saw the 35 recruits undergo seven and a half weeks of drills including a tailor-made curriculum. Guardians had to complete an additional 21 hours of specific training with a heavy emphasis on "emotional intelligence." They also received unclassified military doctrine briefings from senior Space Force leaders.
The flight, comprised of 31 men and four women, will next take part in technical training including space systems operations, intelligence and cyber and communications at one of three bases: Vandenberg AFB, California; Goodfellow AFB, Texas; or Keesler AFB, Mississippi.
Having conducted its first mission last Spring, the Space Force's latest milestone should help to further entrench the fledgling military branch, which is making progress despite persistent skepticism over its raison d'etre.