Just back from a visit downrange, Air Force Lt. Gen. Roger Brady, head of manpower and personnel on the Air Staff, spoke with reporters at the Pentagon Tuesday about what deployed airmen told him. Brady said he got a lot of feedback on the new uniforms—both the fitness uniform and the new Airman Battle Uniform. He said that airmen told him they could use some more pocket space on the PT uniforms, since deployed personnel must either wear their ABU or PT uniforms at all times. Brady said that USAF is working on adding some more pockets to the PT uniform and coming up with some more “all purpose” kinds of shorts. Brady added that A1 is working with Air Education and Training Command to make some more room in the so-called basic military training bag—taking a few things out to make room for more fitness type gear. As for the ABUs, more are going into theater on the next Air Expeditionary Force rotation, Brady said. He got a number of comments while in theater on the design as well, with several airmen noting that the top is a little heavy due to extra pockets that are sewn on the inside—making it thicker and less comfortable when dealing with 115 degree heat.
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.