Weapons system officer Capt. Alain Martinez recently joined Navy Electronic Attack Squadron 140 (VAQ-140) at NAS Whidbey Island, Wash., becoming the unit’s first USAF EA-6B Prowler electronic countermeasures officer. While airmen occasionally fly with shore-based Prowler units, Martinez is unique among even this select group. “It is definitely a challenge and a little daunting, but I see it as a great experience that few Air Force aviators ever get a chance to partake in,” said Martinez. He will serve aboard the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower when VAQ-140 deploys as part of Carrier Air Wing Seven. Previously assigned to the 494th Fighter Squadron at RAF Lakenheath, Britain, flying the F-15E, Martinez completed WSO training at NAS Pensacola, Fla., in 2005. (Whidbey Island release)
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.