"I call it the 'Super-Duper Missile,' " Trump said

By Gabrielle Chung
May 15, 2020 11:01 PM
Donald trump
President Donald Trump (right)
| Credit: MANDEL NGAN/Getty Images

President Donald Trump has big plans for his Space Force — including something he dubs as the "Super-Duper Missile."

Trump, 73, signed the 2020 Armed Forces Day Proclamation and unveiled the official flag for the United States Space Force at the White House on Friday.

During the ceremony, the president praised the flag, which features elements of the Space Force seal against a black background with platinum fringe, and spoke about how the branch is developing "incredible military equipments."

Trump then alluded to what seemed to be a supersonic weapon that could attack an enemy's defenses at a high speed.

“We have, I call it the 'Super-Duper Missile,' and I heard the other night [it's] 17 times faster than what they have right now, when you take the fastest missile we have right now," he said in reference to the weapons from other countries that he had mentioned earlier on in the ceremony.

"You’ve heard Russia has five times and China’s working on five or six times, we have one 17 times and it’s just gotten the go-ahead."

Russian military officials said in 2019 that it has deployed a hypersonic missile that flies at more than 3,800 miles per hour, five times the speed of sound, according to New York Times.

On Friday, Jonathan Hoffman, the assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, confirmed on Twitter that the "Department of Defense is working on developing a range of hypersonic missiles to counter our adversaries."

When asked for comment, a spokesperson for the Space Force referred PEOPLE to Hoffman's tweet.

Trump announced the formation of the Space Force — the United States’ first new military branch in more than 70 years and the first since the Air Force was created under President Harry S. Truman in 1947 — in December 2019 in part to protect American infrastructure in space.

“With my signature today, you will witness the birth of the Space Force, and that will be now officially the sixth branch of the United States Armed Forces,” Trump said before officially signing the National Defense Authorization Act — which creates funding for Space Force — into law. “That is something really incredible. It’s a big moment. That’s a big moment, and we’re all here for it. Space. Going to be a lot of things happening in space.”

President Donald Trump signs the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 at Andrews Air Force Base, Md Trump, Andrews Air Force Base, USA - 20 Dec 2019
President Donald Trump
| Credit: Andrew Harnik/AP/Shutterstock

Space Force is part of a $1.4 trillion government budget that not only reverses cuts to U.S. defense programs, but also allocates funding to the U.S.-Mexico border wall, according to the Associated Press.

The branch started out as an off-the-cuff response from Trump about the U.S. military defense back in early 2018, though a Washington Post report indicates the plan had been in the works for long beforehand.

“I said maybe we need a new force, we’ll call it the Space Force,” Trump said at a Marine Corps rally in March 2018. “And I was not really serious. Then I said, ‘What a great idea, maybe we’ll have to do that.'”