There’s another not-quite-as-it-seemed story from the BRAC commission recommendation package—this time somewhat in favor of the Tennessee Air National Guard. The Air Force wanted to remove the eight C-130s of the 118th Airlift Wing at the Nashville airport and shift all airlift support personnel to the ANG unit in Memphis. The commission chose to follow the Air Force lead on dispensation of the C-130s but left the personnel decision to the governor of Tennessee. According to the commission, the head of the Volunteer State should have the final word on whether the 118th AW remains in Nashville and whether the personnel get a new mission, “including but not limited to air mobility, C4ISR, engineering, flight training, or unmanned aerial vehicles.” Although the commission recommendation includes the potential for a new manned aircraft flying mission, the likelihood of that happening is remote. According to the Nashville City Paper, the 118th has already put in dibs for UAVs.
Three B-1B Lancers from the 7th Bomb Wing flew over the Indo-Pacific alongside F-16s from the Japanese Air Self Defense Force recently, as part of a joint large force exercise. The mission began and ended in the continental U.S., as the bombers flew 31 hours and landed Jan. 11.