Command chiefs from some of the major commands assured airmen on Monday that the new enlisted evaluation system that makes job performance the major criteria for promotion and retention should not be a threat to them. In a panel at AFA’s Air & Space Conference in National Harbor, Md., the chiefs conceded that the new system will be a cultural change that will put pressure on supervising senior sergeants and officers to properly evaluate their airmen. But several of them said it was necessary because the shrinking Air Force increases the value of every airman. “What we’re asking our airmen to do today is a lot different from what they were doing 40 years ago,” said CMSgt. Douglas McIntyre, Air Force Space Command’s command chief. Air National Guard Command Chief CMSgt. James Hotaling said some older master sergeants must realize that “this is a one Air Force system,” and they must “breed trust into the process.” He added, “The Air Guard has nothing to worry about.” Chief MSgt. Harold Hutchinson, Pacific Air Forces command chief, said airmen should not worry about the short evaluation period required to initiate the new system because their supervisors will take care of them.
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.