Making the Kessel Run

How a handful of Airmen brought DevOps to USAF, then used it to save more than 123,000 lives.
information warfare

Air Force Stands Up New Information Warfare Training Unit

The Air Force is looking to revamp the way it trains Airmen for information warfare with the establishment of a new wing-level organization. The Information Warfare Training and Research Initiative Detachment, known as Det. 1, stood up by Air Combat Command in a March 22 ceremony at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz. It will connect Airmen from different locations to conduct training and research on IW, according to an ACC press release.
Austin Ukraine Warsaw

US, Ukrainian leaders Meet in Warsaw as Russia Ramps Up Air Attacks on Ukraine

As Russia ramps up its air campaign on Ukraine, U.S. and Ukrainian leaders met in Warsaw to find ways to fight back Russian aggression. Ukraine's Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba tweeted a photo on March 26 of U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III meeting with himself and other Ukrainian leaders. "This special 2+2 format allows us to seek practical decisions in both political and defense spheres in order to fortify Ukraine’s ability to fight back Russian aggression," he tweeted. The Pentagon said March 25 Russia had dug in defenses near Kyiv and shifted its focus in Ukraine on the Donbas region to exact gains for negotiation.
arctic domain awareness

Arctic Hasn’t Gotten Enough in Past Pentagon Budgets, VanHerck Says. Will That Change in 2023?

U.S. Northern Command boss Gen. Glen D. VanHerck, who has pushed for the Pentagon to allocate more resources to the Arctic region in its annual budget, hopes to see a “significant” funding boost for domain awareness in 2023. Speaking before the Senate Armed Services Committee on March 24, just four days before the 2023 budget request is released, VanHerck fielded plenty of questions from lawmakers concerned about the Arctic, a region of increasing importance where the melting ice cap, natural resources, and shipping lanes are all contested by the U.S., Russia, and even China, among other nations.

Radar Sweep

Stinger, Javelin Production Can Be Increased, with Congressional Support: Army Official

Breaking Defense

The Army’s top acquisition official believes the service will get enough funding and support from Congress to ramp up production of Stinger and Javelin missiles, days after the Pentagon’s top acquisition nominee vowed to expand production lines of munitions for foreign countries. “Stinger was in a very low rate production for primary foreign partners right now,” Doug Bush, assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics and technology, said.

Space Force ISR Chief Wants New Tech to Monitor Adversaries’ Satellites

FedScoop

The U.S. military needs something akin to a Predator drone in space to keep a persistent eye on adversary satellites that could pose a threat, the Space Force’s director of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance said March 24. Russia and China have both in recent years developed counter-space capabilities that threaten some of the U.S. military’s most essential global communications systems, said Maj. Gen. Leah Lauderback, adding that the force needs to find a way to keep a better eye on them.

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Air Force Faces Uphill Climb to Hit Recruiting Targets, General Says During Tour of European Bases

Stars and Stripes

The U.S. Air Force will struggle to hit its recruiting goal this year as it confronts the toughest hiring environment in nearly a generation, the two-star general in charge of its efforts to enlist new members told Stars and Stripes. And the long-term trends appear equally ominous, Maj. Gen. Ed Thomas said March 24 during a stop at a U.S. military base in Stuttgart.

Supreme Court Blocks Lower Court Ruling on Navy SEALs and Covid Vaccinations, in Win for Pentagon

NBC News

The Supreme Court on March 25 blocked a lower court order that prevented the Navy from restricting the deployment of Navy SEALs who refuse to get a Covid vaccination. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin had urged the court to remedy what he called “an extraordinary and unprecedented intrusion into core military affairs” that had no precedent in American history. A federal judge in Texas ruled in early January that the Navy must allow members of the elite special operations community to opt out of the vaccination requirement if they had religious objections. But the judge's order went further, forbidding commanders to make any changes to their military assignments based on a refusal to be vaccinated.

Putin’s Nuclear Threat: ‘Nuke-sniffing’ Plane and Florida Air Force lab Monitoring Ukraine

Florida Today

As the world worries whether Russian President Vladimir Putin will unleash tactical nuclear weapons, a U.S. Air Force “nuke-sniffer” aircraft is positioned in Europe to detect radioactive clouds and collect air samples for scientific analysis. The WC-135C/W Constant Phoenix had already deployed to Royal Air Force Mildenhall in the United Kingdom for pre-planned air-sampling missions before Russia's Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine, said Rose Riley, Air Force deputy chief of media operations.

VA Was on a Path to Kick 90 Percent of Legacy Caregivers Out of Program Before Review Suspension

Military.com

About 90 percent of legacy participants were at risk of being kicked out of the Department of Veterans Affairs' caregiver program before it backtracked on new eligibility requirements, the VA confirmed March 25. The figure comes after VA Secretary Denis McDonough acknowledged March 22 that a "much higher number" of veterans were being dismissed from the program than officials initially anticipated, though he did not disclose a specific number.

Estonia Increases Defense Spending to Buy Air Defense Systems, More Weapons

Defense News

Estonia has approved a €476 million (U.S. $523 million) defense spending hike, the majority of which is for short- to mid-range air defense systems. The decision comes amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has served as a catalyst for other Eastern European nations to boost their own air defense capabilities. Estonia aims to acquire the systems no later than 2025.

Viral Video Shows How Air Force F-15 Pilots Train for Air-to-air Combat

Task and Purpose

It doesn’t take a trained pilot to appreciate the cool factor of a recent TikTok video showing Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle fighter jets chasing each other over the desert outside Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. The video, shot from the cockpit facing the Eagle’s backseat, was viewed more than half a million times on TikTok and shared on the unofficial Air Force subreddit, where readers left more than a hundred comments.

This Year’s Air Force Innovation Prize Winner Makes It Easier to Plug in, Drink up on Deployment

Air Force Times

For troops deployed in the desert who wish they could conjure a cool glass of water, help is on the way. Senior Master Sgt. Brent Kenney, a civil engineering superintendent with the 52nd Fighter Wing at Germany’s Spangdahlem Air Base, won the Air Force’s annual Spark Tank competition earlier this month by proposing a cheaper, lighter way to carry critical resources such as fuel and water to remote areas.

One More Thing

Weapons & Platforms, an Online Resource for Air Force and Aviation Enthusiasts

Air Force Magazine

With the upcoming release of the Pentagon’s fiscal year 2023 budget request, now is the time to catch up on all the essential information you need to know about the aircraft, missiles, satellites, and other weapons that help to make up the Air Force and Space Force. Every one of them is now available in Weapons & Platforms, our new online database, which breaks down data and the latest news on every piece of weaponry in use today.

This Day in Airpower
Celebrating 75 Years of Air and Space Power