In the wake of spending cuts that chopped its budget nearly in half, the 77th Weapons School at Dyess AFB, Tex., will seek to maximize efficiency until it receives more funding, according to a release. The unit, which is responsible for producing B-1 Lancer weapons officers, fears the sequestration-imposed budget cuts will keep it from meeting its yearly proficiency requirements, preventing its members from being able to fly as instructors, aircraft commanders, and mission leads. “Based on the last time each of our instructors flew, their currencies will last them through the middle of July,” said Lt. Col. Jonathan Creer, 77th WPS commander. “Bottom line is we won’t be able to fly.” Thanks to a significantly slashed budget, the squadron decided upon a handful of objectives it would attempt to meet in an effort to maximize efficiency, such as revising its syllabus and upgrading its tactics, techniques, and procedures manuals. For Creer, the budget cuts are an opportunity to move forward. “I tell my guys all the time, this is not a throttle back,” he said. “We challenge them to do better, exceed their expectations, think critically, receive and give criticism, communicate more effectively, and become problem solvers.” (See also Weapons School is Another Sequester Casualty)
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.