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US Space Force members will now be called 'guardians'

Vice President Mike Pence announced the US guardians of the galaxy.

space-force-guardians

Space Force members will be known as guardians.

US Space Force

So now we know: US Space Force members will be called "guardians" going forward, US Vice President Mike Pence said Friday. His announcement came during a first-birthday celebration for the military branch.

"Soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and guardians will be defending our nation for generations to come," Pence said.

Read more: US Space Force: Everything you need to know

Pence said that the Space Force, which was established Dec. 20, 2019, now has 2,000 military members, and that another 3,600 officers have filled out paperwork to transfer to the space branch of the military. The vice president said they're anticipating having 6,000 "in just a short period of time."

In its first year of operation, the Space Force has been working through a long arc of accomplishments large and small. It has overseen a number of satellite launches and the start of a new mission for the X-37B space plane, and it now manages the constellation of GPS satellites. It's also published a key spacepower doctrine document, picked out a logo and uniform design, and gotten an earful from William Shatner on its rank structure. It's even been lampooned in a Netflix series of the same name.

It's not starting from scratch, though. It's largely taking over from the US Air Force Space Command, which was established back in the early 1980s.

"The Space Force is growing strongly every day, and just in the nick of time," Pence added. "Space is a vacuum, but we're not operating in a vacuum ... space is a war-fighting domain. It's imperative that we invest the resources, the personnel and the technology to defend our nation and defend our values in the outer reaches of space."