In his first visit to the Air Force’s unmanned aerial vehicle operations and training center at Creech AFB, Nev., Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz commented on the “game-changing capability” that UAVs provide, saying that “it’s no surprise that these systems are in such high demand with the combatant commanders.” He praised the airmen of the 432nd Wing, declaring that they have “stepped up” in answering the challenges brought by the increased UAV demand. He said, “The airmen of the 432nd play an important role today and will play an even greater role in global vigilance, reach, and power in the future.” The Air Force has launched two key initiatives to quickly bolster its UAV operator pool, including taking non-pilot candidates and placing some new pilot graduates directly into UAV cockpits. As Schwartz noted, “The Air Force is dedicated to increasing equipment, training, and operations capacity as quickly as possible to help win the [war on terror].” (Creech report by SSgt. Alice Moore)
The Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness revised the Defense Department’s COVID-19 guidelines. The new rules clarify what’s meant by being “up to date” on vaccinations and when personnel must wear masks in vehicles, among other changes.