Defense

July 13, 2012

SecAF visits Heavy Airlift Wing in Hungary

by MSgt. Wayne Clark
American Forces Network

Col. Keith Boone, commander of the Heavy Airlift Wing greets Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley after his arrival at P·pa Air Base, Hungary, July 11, 2012. The secretary visited the HAW to speak with airmen about the direction of the Air Force, meet with them on the job and learn what’s on their minds.

PÁPA AIR BASE, Hungary – During his first visit to this small Hungarian base located roughly two hours from Budapest, Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley met with Heavy Airlift Wing senior leaders, U.S. Airmen and Boeing contractors at Pápa Air Base,Hungary, July 11.

The HAW is a multinational consortium that is designed to fulfill strategic airlift requirements with 12 participating nations.

During an “all call” at the base’s cultural center, Donley thanked the approximately 40 U.S. airmen who are assigned here. He also addressed the importance of the HAW, its unique multinational mission and the significant role Airmen assigned to the unit play in building partnership capacity with countries in the Central European region.

“This is a very unique and exciting program,” Donley said. “You’re showing the international community that this approach is vital and that by pooling resources it can be done. You’re building partnership capacity and relationships here that will pay dividends for our Air Force and international partnerships for many years to come.”

The secretary also spoke candidly about the Air Force’s current operations tempo as well as international and domestic challenges facing the nation.

“These are very challenging times in a complex security environment,” he said. “With on-going operations in Afghanistan, we continue the fight against al-Qaida and its affiliates around the world. Our nation faces some significant challenges and for us in Department of Defense that includes a reduction of about $487 billion (in the defense budget).”

Along with the budget, Donley also spoke about force structure changes within the U.S. Air Force.

“In short, we determined that for the Air Force the best course of action is to trade size for quality,” he said. “We will become a smaller Air Force in some areas in order to protect a high-quality and ready force.

“This is a force that will continue to modernize and grow more capable in the future,” he explained. “Though we intend to be a little smaller, we will be a superb force at any size, maintaining agility, flexibility and readiness to engage a full range of contingencies and threats.”

Donley emphasized that despite the challenges facing the Air Force, he is confident in the ability of the service’s total force Airmen to accomplish the mission. He added that several initiatives have been proposed to strengthen the integration of effort across the active and reserve components.

TSgt. Sam Stewart, a U.S. Airman currently serving in the HAW, was impressed by the secretary’s visit and his personal attention to the troops.

“He went out of his way to speak to us and answer our questions and see how we are doing,” said Stewart.




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


 
 

 
Army photograph by SFC Walter E. van Ochten

U.S., Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria train together at Rapid Trident 2015

Army photograph by SFC Walter E. van Ochten U.S. soldiers, of the 3rd Platoon, 615th Military Police Company, 709th Military Police Battalion, react as they conduct reacting to contact training as part of their situational trai...
 
 
Army photograph by Sgt. Juana M. Nesbitt

Estonian, US forces receive new jump wings

Army photograph by Sgt. Juana M. Nesbitt Pvt. Kalmer Simohov, of Parnu, a volunteer with the Estonian Defense League, receives his U.S. Army Airborne wings following the joint airborne operations exercise at a drop zone in Nurm...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SrA. Thomas Spangler

Red Flag offers B-52 crews training that ‘can’t be beat’

Air Force photograph by A1 Class Rachel Loftis A B-52 Stratofortress assigned to the 69th Bomb Squadon, Minot Air Force Base, N.D., taxis for take off during Red Flag 15-3 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., July 15. The B-52 is a ...
 

 
navy-decommission3

Final West Coast frigate, USS Gary, decommissioned

Navy photograph by POCS Donnie W. Ryanl The guided-missile frigate USS Gary (FFG 51) arrives at Naval Base San Diego after completing its final deployment before decomissioning. During the seven-month deployment Gary operated i...
 
 
Air Force photographby A1C Mikaley Towle

‘Thunder’ rolls at Fort Irwin

Air Force photographby A1C Mikaley Towle An Airman assigned to the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., observes as an A-10 Thunderbolt II circle before landing in support of Green Flag West 15-08.5 o...
 
 
DT2

‘Blue’ forces power through Red Flag 15-3

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika An F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 480th Fighter Squadron, Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, flies during a Red Flag 15-3 sortie at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., July 17. Red Fla...
 




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=""> <s> <strike> <strong>