Defense

September 13, 2013

Acting SecAF talks future of special ops

A1C Michael Diaz, 4th Special Operations Squadron aircrew flight equipment technician, fits Acting Secretary of the Air Force Eric Fanning’s oxygen mask prior to flying on a CV-22 Osprey and AC-130U Spooky at Hurlburt Field Fla., Sept. 9, 2013. The visit is part of Fanning’s familiarization with various Air Force missions since becoming the acting secretary.

Acting Secretary of the Air Force Eric Fanning spoke with more than 500 Air Commandos about the future of special operations at an all-call during his two-day visit to Hurlburt Field, Fla., Sept. 9-10.

This visit, his first to the base, was part of his familiarization with different Air Force missions since assuming office June 21.

“There is nothing like getting out and seeing Airmen,” Fanning said. “The Air Force is everywhere and in a lot of places people can’t see, not just supporting, but at the tip of the spear. It’s the one service without which the other services couldn’t do what they do.”

Fanning said he believes special operations will play an increasing role in the future.

“We talk about the pivot to the Pacific as we continue to send more and more forces into places like Africa, the Middle East and remote locations,” he said. “I think there is a fatigue for large-scale ground engagements, which is going to take us a while to recover from; so we’re going to need to rely on methods like special operations.”

Fanning also answered questions from the audience on topics like benefits and budgeting.

He addressed rumors about military retirees having to wait until age 65 to receive their pensions and basic allowance for housing cuts.

“You have to read past the headline and past the first article you see,” he said. “I haven’t heard anyone propose changing the retirement system that dramatically for people in the military. If the decision is made to go through with that, [military personnel] would almost certainly be grandfathered; [changes] would only apply to those coming into the military.”

As for medical and veterans affairs benefits, Fanning said things will improve over time.

“[The war in the Middle East] is a conflict unlike no other for its duration,” he said. “Over the last 10 years more [injured] people are coming back from deployments.”

Fanning said Capitol Hill has made a lot of progress with these issues and are continually trying to improve the care provided to wounded warriors.

“I want to thank you all personally for being so welcoming; it has been an amazing five months for me,” he said. “Thank you all for taking pride in the Air Force, coming to work every day and focusing on the mission.”




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


 
 

 
Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez

Smart-mortar will help Soldiers more effectively hit targets

Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez Nick Baldwin and Evan Young, researchers with the Armament Research Development and Engineering Center at Picatinny Arsenal, Pennsylvania, discuss the 120mm Guided Enhanced Fragmentation Mortar ...
 
 

Air Force assigns new chief scientist

The Air Force announced the service’s new chief scientist to serve as a science and technology adviser to the secretary of the Air Force and the chief of staff of the Air Force, May 21. Dr. Greg Zacharias will be the 35th chief scientist and is ready to “dive in” to his new role. “I...
 
 

TSgt promotion release delayed to allow system validation

Technical sergeant promotion selection results, originally scheduled for release May 28, will be delayed to enable the Air Force to continue to validate extensive system changes to the Weighted Airman Promotion System, officials announced. The 15E6 technical sergeant promotion cycle is the first to incorporate recent changes in the enlisted evaluation and promotion system. Recent...
 

 

Freedom completes rough water trials

The littoral combat ship USS Freedom completed Seakeeping and Structural Loads Trials, commonly referred to as Rough Water Trials in late March the Navy reported May 21. The U.S. Navy must demonstrate the seaworthiness and structural integrity of each new ship class. One of the primary ways the Navy verifies these qualities is through a...
 
 

Air Force releases Strategic Master Plan

The Air Force officially released the Strategic Master Plan May 21, which is the latest in a series of strategic documents designed to guide the organizing, training and equipping of the force over the coming decades. The SMP builds on the strategic imperatives and vectors described in the capstone document, America’s Air Force: A Call...
 
 

HYT extension possible for SrA-MSgt in 35 career fields

Eligible senior airmen, staff sergeants, technical sergeants and master sergeants in 35 Air Force specialties will be able to apply for a high year of tenure extension and, if approved, will be able to extend between 12 and 24 months past their current HYT. The Air Force is introducing several personnel and manpower initiatives to...
 




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>