Schwartz “More Comfortable” with DADT Repeal

Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz said Thursday he still thinks it’s moderately risky for military effectiveness to end the ban on homosexuals openly serving in the US military during a time of war. But he noted that he’s grown...

More C-5A Retirements Eyed

The Air Force would like to reduce its fleet of C-5A transports from 59 to 27 as part of the broader strategy to maintain a fleet of “about 300 strategic airlift aircraft,” Gen. Duncan McNabb, head of US Transportation Command,...

All Downhill From Here

AEHF-1, the first Advanced Extremely High Frequency military communications satellite, is now more than half way to its intended geosynchronous orbit where it will operate, Air Force space officials announced Thursday. They said the satellite crossed the half-way mark on March 22 when its perigee climbed above 17,893 kilometers in altitude above the Earth. Since then, its orbit has surpassed a perigee of 20,000 kilometers in elevation. The officials said they expect AEHF-1 to reach its geosynchronous perch in late summer. The Air Force launched AEHF-1 into space last August. An anomaly with one of the satellite's propulsion systems necessitated the ongoing orbit-raising activities. USAF and industry officials have "demonstrated incredible technical expertise and innovation to work around the anomaly and create the opportunity to achieve mission success for this critical national asset," said Dave Madden, Military Satellite Communications Systems director at Los Angeles AFB, Calif.

Revised Unified Command Plan Issued

US Northern Command now has lead responsibility for overseeing US military operations in the Arctic under the new unified command plan that President Obama has just approved. UCP 2011 stresses the growing importance of the Arctic. “NORTHCOM was given advocacy...

C-130J Unit Sets Another Airdrop Record

The 772nd Expeditionary Airlift Squadron at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, has established another unit record for airdrops in a one-month period. This C-130J transport squadron completed 72 airdrops in March, eclipsing its previous record of 51 set in January. The 72...

Kingdom Lear

Scott AFB, Ill., is reclaiming the Air Force’s sole C-21A schoolhouse from Keesler AFB, Miss. This move will centralize the bulk of USAF’s C-21 functions at Scott, which had hosted the training mission for the militarized Lear business transports up...

Salty Hawks

Airmen and HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopters from the 56th Rescue Squadron at RAF Lakenheath, England, are testing their sea legs by deploying aboard the USS Ponce, a Navy amphibious transport dock ship operating off the coast of Libya in the...

Spreading its Hooves?

We asked the Air Force historian and Air Combat Command if the A-10 fleet achieved a “first-time-ever” milestone late last month when one Warthog, supporting Operation Odyssey Dawn, attacked two small Libyan ships that were indiscriminately firing upon merchant vessels...

A400M Contract Finalized

The seven launch customers for Airbus Military’s A400M transport signed the final contract amendments in Seville, Spain, paving the way for the aircraft’s production to begin, announced Airbus parent company EADS Thursday. These countries—Belgium, Britain, France, Germany, Luxemburg, Spain, and...