USAF’s combat weather force is trying out a new approach to training that would consolidate training sites and resources for new airmen in the highly specialized field, essentially ensuring “they are prepared for the job and ready to deploy” as soon as they reach their duty location, said TSgt. Joel Decker, the 93rd Air Ground Operations Wing training NCO. The combat weather field currently trains at several locations around the country and struggles with small classes offered at times of the year that may not accommodate unit schedules. To test out the new plan, the 93rd AGOW, headquartered at Moody AFB, Ga., has brought combat weather airmen from Ft. Drum, N.Y., Ft. Hood, Tex., and Pope AFB, N.C., to Camp Blanding Joint Training Center in Florida for a 30-day exercise. Helping train the airmen are Florida National Guardsmen. MSgt. James Heinrich, 93rd AGOW’s lead for the exercise, expects the activity to “show that training needed for combat weather airmen can be accomplished at one venue.” He added, “We have everything we need at Camp Blanding, including the Weather Readiness Training Center.” (23rd Wing report by SrA. Frances Locquiao)
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.