Reduced Strategic Airlift Fleet Sufficient

The Air Force's proposal to retire its remaining 27 C-5A transports, while maintaining 52 newly upgraded C-5Ms and 223 C-17s, would leave a strategic airlift fleet "sufficient to satisfy the demand," said Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz. Briefing reporters in the Pentagon last week, Schwartz said he is comfortable with that fleet size, given the broader force adjustments that the Pentagon intends to make, such as retaining fewer Army brigade combat teams, to match the Obama Administration's new strategic guidance. "The combatant commanders concerned in this instance are [comfortable] as well," noted Schwartz. The new strategic guidance "recognizes that we do not need to retain the airlift capacity to support two large, simultaneous, and rapidly developing ground campaigns," states a Pentagon document outlining the proposed force adjustments. "When faced with competing demands, we can prioritize and phase movements," it adds. In addition to the strategic airlift cuts, the Air Force aims to retire 65 of its oldest C-130s, leaving "an inventory of 318 modernized C-130s," said Schwartz. He said that force would be "sufficient to provide the intra-theater support." (Schwartz transcript)

No Air Force Nuclear Reductions in Fiscal 2013

Cuts to the Air Force’s nuclear-capable bomber and ICBM forces to meet the United States’ commitments under the New START agreement with Russia will not begin next fiscal year, said Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz. Under the terms of...

Spartan Disposition Not Clear Yet

The Air Force hasn’t settled yet on a method of disposition for the C-27J Spartan transports that it wants to divest, said Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz. “Probably our best option” is to place them in storage in the...

Reserve Components Integral to US Military Power

Without its reserve components, the US military “simply could not” maintain the global presence necessary to keep America secure, said CIA Director David Petraeus on Monday. Speaking at a Reserve Officers Association symposium in Washington, D.C., Petraeus said reserve forces...

Bagram Commander Hits 5,000 Flight Hours

: Maj. Gen. Darryl Roberson, 455th Air Expeditionary Wing commander at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, recently logged his 5,000th flying hour during a mission from the base in an F-15E. Roberson, who has commanded the wing since last April, has flown...

ORS-1 Reaches Operational Milestone

The first Operationally Responsive Space satellite, ORS-1, has achieved its initial/final operational capability, announced Air Force Space Command boss Gen. William Shelton. The satellite, which reached orbit in June 2011, includes a modified version of the SYERS-2 electro-optical/infrared imagery sensor...

‘Round the Horn

Air Force Reserve Command’s 920th Rescue Wing at Patrick AFB, Fla., sent two HC-130 Combat King search and rescue aircraft to cover coalition forces operating in the Horn of Africa. At the vertex of piracy, terrorism, humanitarian, and stability operations,...

Kirtland Welcome New Aircraft Simulator

Officials at Kirtland AFB, N.M., ceremoniously cut the ribbon at Building 950, site of the 58th Special Operations Wing’s new HC/MC-130J aircraft simulator. Lt. Col. Regan Patrick, 58th Training Squadron commander, called the simulator “a tremendous addition” to the wing’s...

English Project Seeks to Honor 8th Air Force’s Friendly Invasion

Local English communities have come together under a project to preserve the story of 8th Air Force and its presence throughout eastern England during World War II. The initiative, dubbed "The Eighth in the East," has just received a development grant of some $22,800 (£14,500) to launch its activities. "Inspired by a team of archaeologists, archivists, and museum curators, the project is aimed at helping local people of all ages who live close to one of the 67 war-time airfields to take ownership of this rich legacy by recording oral histories, mapping each air base, and putting together events which will engage everyone with a three-year period that changed the course of history," reads a release from project planners. "It's almost shameful," said BBC's Nick Patrick "that, were it not for a handful of dedicated volunteers and museum professionals, this history has almost been allowed to die." (For more on the Mighty Eighth during World War II, read The Real Twelve O'Clock High and The Cost of Schweinfurt from Air Force Magazine's archives.)