Air Combat Command and Air Force Reserve Command have cemented the Total Force Integration initiative to share F-16 operations at Hill AFB, Utah, between ACC’s 388th Fighter Wing and AFRC’s 419th FW. Officials for the two commands signed a memorandum of understanding last week, setting in place “a test case for future fighter associate programs,” reports 2nd Lt. Beth Woodward and Kari Tilton. The Reserve unit will be giving up its Block 30 F-16s, which go to other Reserve and Air National Guard units, and will be sharing the Block 40 F-16s of the 388th FW. The 388th also gets around 15 additional Vipers from Cannon AFB, N.M., bringing its total to about 80 aircraft.
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.