President Donald Trump unveiled the new logo design for the US Space Force, the newest branch of the armed forces, and the internet has not been quiet about its seeming resemblance to a science fiction space-bound classic.
The newly designated military branch has been a cornerstone of Trump’s presidency for the last three years and came to fruition last month when the president signed the annual military budget into law with the allocation of a designated $738 billion in military spending. It now resides under the US Air Force, which is responsible for branding and design.
"After consultation with our Great Military Leaders, designers, and others, I am pleased to present the new logo for the United States Space Force, the Sixth Branch of our Magnificent Military!” wrote the president in a tweet.
As was pointed out by space writer Miriam Kramer – and hundreds of other Twitter Trekkies – the “new” logo looks a great deal like the patch design from Star Trek's Starfleet Command.
While the new logo bears a strong resemblance to the Star Trek logo, conservative national security commentator and analyst John Noonan notes that the logo pulls much of its design from the Air Force Space Command (AFSPC) logo that he “wore as a Lieutenant in 2005.” AFSPC “provides military focused space capabilities with a global perspective to the joint warfighting team” and was activated almost 16 years to the day after the first Star Trek debuted on NBC on September 8, 1966. Indeed, the central design has been used as part of the military's space program for decades.
Other GOP members joined in, including @NewGopforUS, who tweeted: “Lightsabers or I’m not joining.”
While other Twitter users questioned the logo's originality and hinted at the possibility of a lawsuit at the expense of taxpayers.
The US Space Force officially launched on December 20, 2019. Just over a month later, the new branch unveiled its first utility uniform and was met with similar Twitter mockery after it became apparent its design was not necessarily fit for space given its woodland camouflage print. Controversy (and doubts) surrounding the newly created Space Force goes back almost two years, when the president first expressed a desire to set up an agency that is equipped to address the needs of space as “a warfighting domain just like the land, air, and sea.”
In June 2018, Trump announced that the Pentagon was to begin setting up the military branch with plans for the astro agency to launch by 2020. Even astrophysicist and science communicator Neil deGrasse Tyson weighed in on the announcement, calling it “fundamentally odd” and adding that a key component of the USSF should be targeting space debris and to prioritize finding ways to defend Earth against asteroid impacts.
“I bet if the dinosaurs had a space program, they’d still be here and we wouldn’t,” he added in an interview for Politico.
Today, the USSF has its very own bare-bones, military-sanctioned webpage with little else about current mission objectives, strategic goals, or other information that would befit the armed forces' online presence.