Can’t Get Any Smaller

Pacific Air Forces boss Gen. Hawk Carlisle said on Tuesday his command has “significantly more mission than resources and time, and it will get more so in the future.” Dealing with that difficult situation will require greater innovation, he said in National Harbor, Md., at AFA’s Air & Space Conference. Carlisle drew on the examples of two Air Force innovators, Claire Chennault and Jimmy Doolittle, and quoted Doolittle’s admonition that one must prepare for war “from the neck up, not the neck down.” He said PACAF’s core tenant is expanded engagement with allies and partners. “We must stay engaged in the theater,” but due to budget constraints, the command will be relying on “places, not bases.” He said. Carlisle said he has a capacity challenge. “We’re as small as we can get. If we get any smaller, we can’t meet our mission,” he said. He also noted a “shortage of readiness,” due to last year’s severe budget restrictions. His vast command demands agile and flexible command and control, but maintaining that with limited resources is a challenge, said Carlisle. “We have to learn to do better,” he said. On the positive side, Carlisle praised his airmen and the strong partnership PACAF has with Japan.