World

November 14, 2013

ACC Commander: ‘I will die before I give up’

Senior Airman Jack Sanders
451st Air Expeditionary Wing

KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan  — The Commander of Air Combat Command visited Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, Nov. 8, to meet with Airmen and leadership during a tour of the Southwest Asia Area of Responsibility.

Gen. Mike Hostage said understanding the conditions and expectations of the Airmen here will help to ensure training standards continue to prepare Airmen to meet all aspects of future deployments.

“One promise that I will make, that I will die before I give up on it, is that I will not send an Airman over here who is not trained and equipped to do the job,” Hostage said.

While meeting with Airmen of the 451st Air Expeditionary Wing, Hostage took time to answer multiple questions. The questions ranged from retrograde of the mission in Afghanistan, fiscal restraints and training, to future Air Force development and operations.

“After we’re done with Afghanistan are we all going home and stopping this deployment stuff?” Hostage asked. “Sadly, no. When I first came in the Air Force we had 700,000 Airmen. Since then we’ve cut ourselves in half. We have 500 fewer airplanes than we had back then. Back then, we had 11 fighter wings in Europe. Today we have three. Yet, we’re required to be forward during peacetime. That hasn’t gone down, in fact it has gone up. For our Air Force that means a continuous ops tempo, maybe not the same places, and maybe not the same types of missions.”

Hostage said that Airmen will see things like retraining and a slimming of the fleets as fiscal budgets continue to tighten.

“We can meter our numbers and bring in a few less and let a few more leave who want to leave; so we can adjust the numbers over time to get our force numbers down,” Hostage said. “The problem is when we have to come down in those numbers faster than those voluntary means can get us there. That’s when we have to do things like career job reservations. If you’re in an overage career field, there are times when we have to say, ‘Well I’m sorry, I know you want to reenlist, but we don’t have room for you in your career field, so you don’t get to reenlist. However, if you want to retrain into one of our shortest career fields then you can probably stay.’ That’s the type of things that you’ll see as we move forward.”

Talk of moving forward brought questions from Airmen about future programs and policies.

“I’m fighting hard to keep our future programs on track,” Hostage said. “So today we have F-15s and F-16s that are 25, almost 30 years old. Most fighters are meant to last about eight to 10 years. We’ve got them triple that. They’re still very capable, and they’re still better than anything else out there. But, we’ve got folks out there who are building the next generation of competitive airplanes. They potentially can be much more capable than an F-15 or an F-16.

“Eventually we have to replace our old airframes,” Hostage said. “We’re still having political problems because it’s expensive to buy new airplanes, and it’s expensive right in a time when our budget is being constrained.”

Hostage concluded the visit with Airmen by saying he was impressed by the questions addressed to him.

“Today’s Airmen are very smart,” he said. “They ask the hard, important questions and genuinely take an interest in the future of their Air Force.”

Hostage has several other stops scheduled to meet with Airmen all around the AOR. He said meeting Airmen here allowed him a better understanding of expectations and requirements and gave him a chance to address concerns of deployed Airmen.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Guard Muster brings Arizona together

(U.S. Army National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Brian A. Barbour) Arizona National Guard Soldiers from the 158th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade stand in formation on the field at Arizona State University’s Sun Devil Stadium, Dec. 7 in Tempe. The formation, which was part of the Arizona National Guard Muster and Community Expo, was the first...
 
 
NORAD_pict

NORAD prepares to track Santa’s flight

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. (AFNS) — The North American Aerospace Defense Command’s NORAD Tracks Santa website, http://www.noradsanta.org, launched Dec. 1, featuring a mobile version, a holiday countdown, new games a...
 
 

Air Force not planning Involuntary Force Reductions in 2015

FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. – The modern Air Force is “feeling some strain” recently, due to its shrinking size and high operations tempo, but there won’t be any more involuntary force-shaping in 2015, Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James said today. James said she and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark...
 

 

Local Briefs December 19, 2014

NARFE chapter 55 to meet January 12, 11 a.m. – Golden Corral The National Active and Retired Federal Employees (NARFE) Association, Chapter 55, will hold their next monthly luncheon meeting on Monday January 12, 2015 at the Golden Corral, 4380 East 22nd Street, Tucson, AZ 85711.  The luncheon starts at 11 a.m. and ends about...
 
 

New Commander addresses Airmen of 12th Air Force

To all of the 12th Air Force Community, Happy Holidays! My wife Kristan, my three children, and I are excited to join this outstanding 12th AF community.  I cannot adequately express how honored and humbled I feel to join this community as the Commander.   I certainly appreciate the exceptional efforts of General and Mrs....
 
 
(AFSOUTH)

New commander to take reins of 12th AF, AFSOUTH

Twelfth Air Force and Air Forces Southern will welcome a new commander during a change of command ceremony Dec. 19 at 10 a.m. at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. Major Gen. Chris Nowland will be promoted to the rank of lieutenant ...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin