The grassroots evaluation of remotely piloted aircraft crews’ morale and career issues will wrap up this fall, and Air Force officials will decide the way forward at Corona—a meeting of top service leadership. ACC boss Gen. Hawk Carlisle said at a Sept. 17 event at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., that he expects to receive a final briefing on the Culture and Process Improvement Program soon. ACC began the CPIP earlier this month, with two teams visiting 12 Active Duty, Reserve, and Air National Guard locations to meet with RPA pilots and sensor operators to discuss morale issues. The process is modeled after Global Strike Command’s Force Improvement Program. Carlisle said he hopes to find actions to take quickly to help RPA crews. Following the conclusion of the CPIP process, Carlisle said ACC will then send crews to talk with crews at the Air Force’s distributed ground control system, which is tasked with reviewing surveillance collected by RPAs. (Listen to Carlisle’s speech.)
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.