- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 22, 2021

The U.S. Space Force has released prototypes of the uniforms to be worn by its Guardians, reigniting sci-fi comparisons on Twitter and questions about why the service exists in the first place.

The unveiling accompanied Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond’s reveal of the newest military branch’s “Guardian Ideal” and “Space Force values” at the Air Force Association Air, Space, and Cyber Conference.

The Guardians’ dress uniform, which features a dark navy waist-length coat with a diagonal row of six buttons and shoulder epaulets, is described by the service as a “modern, distinctive, professional uniform.”

But some on Twitter had other ways to describe it.

“A blend of Star Trek Enterprise dress uniform, but with the Mirror Universe diagonal,” wrote one user.

“The new Space Force uniforms really do remind me of Star Trek,” wrote another. “Not gonna lie, I think they’re awesome.”

Other comments cut a little deeper.

“What …#SpaceForce is still a thing?!?,” wrote one person.

The service has faced an uphill battle for relevance among the public since President Trump announced its creation in 2019.

Some lawmakers continue to raise questions about whether the service is needed.

Democratic Reps. Jared Huffman of California and Mark Pocan of Wisconsin introduced an amendment to the annual defense policy bill, currently under debate on the House floor, which would abolish the service and return “authorities, duties, missions, personnel, units, facilities, and assets to the appropriate commands of the Armed Forces.”

Despite the chaff on Twitter and questions raised by lawmakers, the service’s top brass remains committed to building the force of the future.

“We’re taking a bold approach to developing our Guardians, both military and civilians, to build a highly skilled, unified, and inclusive force,” said Patricia Mulcahy, Space Force deputy chief of space operations for human capital. “We’ve set the conditions for a culture in which individuals are empowered and feel valued, and where high-performing teams can thrive.”

The service said it will collect feedback over the next few months before deciding on the final design.

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