Air Force Special Operations Command has a big day planned for Nov. 16, AFSOC commander Gen. Michael Wooley said Tuesday. That’s the date that AFSOC expects to get its first operational CV-22 Osprey aircraft. The Air Commando wing at Hurlburt Field, Fla., will at the same time reactivate the 1st Special Operations Wing, bringing back the designation from AFSOC’s formative days. The existing 16th Special Operations Wing will relocate to the command’s new base at Cannon AFB, N.M. Wooley said standing up a second wing with “equivalent capabilities” at Cannon realizes a vision AFSOC has had for more than a decade—to stand up a new base west of the Mississippi. AFSOC continues to grow and has outgrown Hurlburt, Wooley said.
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.