Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has “reviewed and concurred with the ongoing development” of the Air Force-Navy AirSea Battle concept, an Office of the Secretary of Defense official told the Daily Report. That statement builds upon the more vague comments on the status of the Office of the Secretary of Defense’s blessing made by defense officials last week during a background briefing on the fledgling concept and its newly unveiled office. The new ASB office, staffed by USAF, Marine Corps, and Navy personnel, will play three roles, according to those officials. First, as a multi-service organization, it will facilitate the “interservice and interagency coordination during the development, maturation, and implementation of the concept,” said one of them. Second, it will supervise the implementation of manning, training, and equipping of “integrated air and naval forces,” said this same official. Third, the office will oversee the concept’s execution “over time,” according to the official. For more on AirSea Battle, continue to A Work in Progress
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.