Air Force Special Operations Command officials believe the command will need about 5,500 people to run Cannon AFB, N.M. and operate its new special operations mission. AFSOC takes over Cannon on Oct. 1, 2007, but plans to stagger the influx of AFSOC personnel over four years. According to the Clovis News Journal, in Fiscal 2007 AFSOC anticipates assigning less than 1,500, building to 5,500 by 2010. The plan, of course, hinges upon the in-progress environmental study.
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.