Libyan Air Defenses Degraded

Coalition cruise missiles and strike aircraft have significantly impacted Libya’s air defenses just two days into Operation Odyssey Dawn, Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, Joint Staff director, told reporters Sunday. “We judge these strikes to have been very effective in degrading...

B-2s, F-15s, F-16s in First Wave of Libya Airstrikes

Air Force strike aircraft participated in the initial wave of attacks against Libyan military targets. Following the US and British cruise missile attack on Libyan air defense sites that launched Operation Odyssey Dawn on Saturday, three B-2 stealth bombers, flying...

Ellsworth Airman Dies Overseas

SrA. Michael J. Hinkle II, 24, of Corona, Calif., died last week due to a non-combat-related incident in Southwest Asia, according to the Defense Department. Hinkle died March 16; the cause of his death is under investigation, stated DOD in...

No Let-up in Japan Relief

Airmen continue myriad activities under Operation Tomodachi to bring aid to the people of Japan. On Sunday, a C-17 from JB Elmendorf, Alaska, landed at Sendai airport in northeastern Japan, bringing in relief supplies. It was the first C-17 to...

Petraeus: Combat Force Reductions Very Likely

Army Gen. David Petraeus, commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan, said last week it’s “very likely” that combat forces will be among those units that he allows to return home starting this summer. Speaking at a National Journal/Newseum...

Iran’s Involvement

Iran faces conflicting motives in its not-so-secret support for insurgents in Afghanistan, says Army Gen. David Petraeus, head of US Forces-Afghanistan. Iran’s involvement is pretty clear, Petraeus said last week during a discussion in Washington, D.C., sponsored by the National...

Do the Democracy Wave

Anti-government demonstrations sweeping through much of the Middle East are having “no effect” on events in Afghanistan and Iraq, Army Gen. David Petraeus said last week. Speaking March 18 at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., Petraeus said the “people power”...

Still Some Wiggle Room

The Air Force still has time to decide whether to extend the service life of its older F-16s, senior service officials told House lawmakers last week. Those so-called “pre-block” aircraft (Block 23, Block 30, Block 32) reside in many of...

From Analytical to Empirical

The Air Force is studying the equipment that a commercial telecommunications company wants to introduce across the United States because of its likely interference with the Global Positioning System signal, Gen. William Shelton, Air Force Space Command boss, told House lawmakers last week. The company, LightSquared of Reston, Va., seeks to erect up to 40,000 towers mostly in US urban centers for a new 4G broadband network. "We believe from what we have seen thus far that virtually every GPS receiver out there would be affected," said Shelton. He continued, "What we're looking for now from the company is actual hardware that they plan to use so that we can collect empirical data as opposed to analytical data." This technical analysis is due for delivery to the Federal Communications Commission—which is mulling whether to grant the company an operating license—"by the June timeframe," said Shelton. He noted that the company shifted its business model from a "largely a space-based effort with terrestrial augmentation," to "a terrestrial-based network with space augmentation." Deputy Defense Secretary Bill Lynn recently wrote FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski "strongly" recommending that the commission defer final action until the analysis is completed. (Lynn letter)

Managing Personnel Attrition

The Air Force expects to exceed its authorized end strength in Fiscal 2011 by approximately 1,500 officers—a trend that could continue into the following fiscal year if officials “do not continue efforts to manage attrition,” Lt. Gen. Darrell Jones, deputy...