Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall visited Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., to see the culmination of Red Flag-Nellis 22-3 on July 28, 2022.
For 47 years Red Flag participants have been presented with the latest in adversary tactics and the most challenging training scenarios to ensure their survivability in real conflict, and Red Flag 22-3 took that tradition to a new level by presenting warfighters even tougher problem sets focused on peer competitors’ capabilities.
“We have a high-end peer competitor problem now, and these exercises are enormously valuable in getting people ready to take on that challenge. Our response to this challenge also includes agile combat employment as part of our approach to dealing with the high end threat,” Kendall said.
Before this iteration of Red Flag, the 65th Aggressor Squadron was re-activated to provide dedicated fifth-generation adversary air for our forces and allies to train against.
“It’s critically important that we have training that emulates the kind of adversary that our Airmen might actually have to face,” Kendall said.
During his visit, Kendall learned about the mission of the 414th Combat Training Squadron, Red Flag, and also toured various facilities including the Virtual Test and Training Center, the Shadow Operations Center-Nellis, and the 59th Test and Evaluation Squadron’s Data Lab.
“I saw a lot here that is going to influence where we’re going,” Kendall said. “We’ve long had an advantage in the sophistication and robustness of our training, I saw some examples of that while I was here.”
Kendall emphasized, ”I also saw some things that are pointing out the direction to the future and where we need to go to advance our capabilities even further.”
The Secretary also applauded the USAFWC’s Pacing Challenge Campaign Plan as vital to focusing test, training and tactics development on the future fight.
“The USAF Warfare Center ensures Airmen have the best integrated and advanced training, most capable and operationally agile equipment, and most effective tactics available to conduct joint, all-domain combat operations,” Kendall said.