Reinvigorating the nuclear enterprise, mainstreaming remotely piloted aircraft, focusing on families, and validating the Air Force’s “warrior spirit” are the principal legacies outgoing Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz sees from his tenure. Schwartz, who departs the CSAF office on Aug. 10, said in a mid July interview he and Secretary Michael Donley were given the top charge of re-establishing the “standard of excellence” in the nuclear enterprise. “I think we did that, and that will certainly continue under the new Chief’s leadership,” he said. Schwartz said the Air Force has “established a path for institutionalizing” RPAs—having created a career track, schoolhouse, and culture for the systems—”that will serve the Air Force and the joint team well going forward.” The emphasis on families came in “lots of different dimensions,” ranging from housing to recognizing spouse contributions to dependent child education. And, while the Air Force’s warrior spirit was “always there,” Schwartz said it “perhaps wasn’t sufficiently appreciated by others.” He said “there was a time when . . . folks doubted whether we were ‘all in’ in the fights that were under way” in Southwest Asia. “I think there’s little doubt, at least in the joint team, that our Air Force is ‘all in’ in any given dimension,” he said.
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.