Air Force aircraft maintainers at Bagram AB, Afghanistan are lending the kind of in-lieu-of support envisioned by Air Force leaders—they are helping Army and Navy maintainers with aircraft repairs. Airmen of the 455th Expeditionary Maintenance Squadron started out loaning tools and providing supplies to soldiers who maintain CH-47s, but SSgt. Craig Seals reports that wear and tear and mishaps “created a manpower shortage” for Army structural maintainers, so the 455th airmen began lending a hand. And, when the Navy needed to bend some hydraulic tubing lines for its aircraft, the airmen stepped in.
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.