The F-35A is ready for combat and will deploy “in the
spring to summer” overseas, Air Combat Command chief Gen. Hawk Carlisle
told defense writers in Washington, D.C., Friday.
As the US-led coalition closes the noose on ISIS in
Mosul, Iraq and, later, Raqqa, Syria, deconfliction with Russia’s
separate air campaign is going to be critical, Air Combat Command chief
Gen. Hawk Carlisle told defense writers in Washington, D.C., Friday.
The Iraqi Air Force on Friday conducted its first
strikes inside Syria, hitting ISIS targets in the area of Abu Kamal in
response to that group’s attacks inside Iraq.
The Air Force awarded a $15.6 million contract to ELTA
North America Inc., to deliver 21 “counter-unmanned aerial systems,”
according to a Feb. 21 Pentagon announcement.
The Air Force demonstrated a number of new information
gathering and targeting procedures at Red Flag 17-1 that will help the
service transition to a more networked approach to the battlespace.
The Air Force is preparing to say goodbye to the MQ-1
Predator as it focuses its remotely piloted aircraft forces on flying
the newer, more deadly MQ-9.
Boeing has sued two of its suppliers for allegedly
mislabeling chemicals that damaged the refueling systems in a KC-46A,
which delayed its first flight in 2015 by a month.
MSgt. Israel Del Toro completed his 131st parachute
jump at the US Air Force Academy, Colo., on Feb. 18. It had been about
12 years since his 130th jump—a time filled with the struggle and
courage of his recovery from 100 percent disability status after a 2005
roadside bomb detonated under his Humvee in Afghanistan.
B-1 Lancer from Dyess AFB, Texas, a B-2 Spirit from Whiteman AFB,
Mo., and a B-52 Stratofortress from Minot AFB, N.D., rehearse
formations moments before performing a bomber trio in-trail flyover at
Barksdale AFB, La., Feb. 2, 2017.
The Air Force is “getting ready” to deploy its F-35As
on an overseas deployment, Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein said at
the Center for Strategic and International Studies Thursday.
The Air Force is looking at light attack aircraft that
are “shovel ready,” and could quickly be acquired to perform ground
support missions in “uncontested” regions, Chief of Staff Gen. David
Goldfein said Thursday.
Stateside bases could become a “no fly zone” if the Air
Force can’t get some predictability to its budget, Chief of Staff Gen.
David Goldfein said Thursday.
Asked to compare the capabilities of the Chinese J-20
and J-31 to American F-22s and F-35s, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen.
David Goldfein said it’s almost an irrelevant comparison, and what is a
better discussion is “network versus network.”
The Pentagon’s anticipated review of ways to defeat
ISIS will not solely focus on military actions, but will also call for
political changes to ensure the group does not regain power in the
region, Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, said
The US and Russia will work together in the minimum way
to deconflict operations over Syria and to establish a communication
line to use in the event of a crisis, but current law prevents any
additional work, the top US uniformed officer said Thursday.
Air Force leaders are working to educate the American public on the importance of space in US military operations.
Recent US and coalition airstrikes have taken out a
series of high-level ISIS officials, including those in charge of
anti-aircraft operations and coordination of the group's trademark
Two Air Force C-5s on Wednesday delivered four US Army
AH-64 Apaches to Europe as part of the US build up on that continent,
with more airlifts of helicopters expected.
More US troops could be needed to maintain momentum in
the fight against ISIS and eventually topple the group's capital city of
Raqqa, Syria, the top US official in the region said Wednesday.
Air Mobility Command has approved the use of tablet
computers in place of paper flight manuals at all AMC wings, according
to a press release.
US officials believe that a series of structures
nearing completion on islands China has built in the South China Sea are
designed to house long-range surface-to-air missiles, according to Reuters.
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) has called on the Senate
to form a bipartisan study group to perform a “top to bottom review” of
US policy toward Syria.
The QF-16 aerial target drone took to the skies at
Holloman AFB, Nev., for the first time on Feb. 10, according to an Air
The Pentagon is “on track” to deliver the new plan to
defeat ISIS to President Donald Trump next week as required by a Jan. 28
memorandum, spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said on Tuesday.
Vice President Mike Pence sought both to assure
European allies that the Trump administration is committed to the NATO
alliance and to warn them that the US expects greater contributions to
the common defense in a visit to Brussels Monday.
Lockheed Martin’s second production-ready T-50A aircraft completed its inaugural flight Monday.
Reservists from the 507th Air Refueling Wing, based at
Tinker AFB, Okla., returned on Feb. 17 and Feb. 19 from a deployment to
Incirlik AB, Turkey, according to a press release.
A research team from the Air Force Research Laboratory
at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, recently demonstrated a robotic arm
intended to make aircraft maintenance more efficient and reliable.
Air Education and Training Command activated its first
civil service aircraft maintenance organization during a Feb. 10
ceremony at JBSA-Randolph, Texas.
Col. David Brynteson, 332nd Expeditionary Operations Group commander, checks the engines on an F-15E Strike Eagle Jan. 27, 2016, in Southwest Asia.
Retired Lt. Col. Alan Botine will receive a Silver Star for his actions flying in support of coalition forces in Iraq in 2003.
A team of 25 researchers and scientists recently
visited the 436th Aerial Port Squadron at Dover AFB, Del., to gather
ideas for their project, which calls for them to envision the Aerial
Port of the Future.
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker
encouraged European nations to resist the efforts of US President Donald
Trump and his cabinet to make them contribute more to the common
defense through the NATO alliance.
A new House bill would “exempt certain veterans and other individuals” from the federal hiring freeze ordered by President Donald Trump on Jan. 23.
Given its heavy usage and its high operating cost, the
B-1 may be retired sooner than the B-52, which is 20 years older,
according to Air Combat Command chief Gen. Hawk Carlisle.
Twenty years after the Air Force gave up its EF-111
stand-in jamming platform, it is again looking to create an escort
electronic warfare aircraft capability, inheriting the mission from the Navy.
The next Daily Report column will be on Tuesday, Feb. 21, due to the President's Day holiday.
The US is interested in discussing collaboration with
Russia in the fight against ISIS, but Russia must prove that it will
operate within international norms “and live up to the commitments” it
has made with NATO, Defense Secretary James Mattis said Thursday.
Airmen, F-16s, and KC-135s returned to Europe earlier
this month after a seven-month rotation to Africa that was requested to
help protect American interests in South Sudan.
The United States and NATO must accelerate the fight
against ISIS, which has served as a “direct and immediate threat to
Europe and to us all,” Defense Secretary James Mattis said during a
ministerial meeting Thursday in Brussels.
The Battlefield Airborne Communications Node, or BACN, will soar above US Central Command for its 10,000th mission this month.
The F-35 program won’t be ready for operational testing
on time, but program executive officer Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan
would like to start it with the assets that will be available.
In the world of multi-domain command and control,
victory goes to whomever is quickest, the Air Force’s top information
officers said at an AFCEA event in Arlington, Va.
The Air Force is about to get faster in developing
cyber defense capabilities, top generals in the Office of Information
Dominance said Thursday.
Behind the scenes of the Marine Corps’ historic F-35B
deployment in January was a team of aging tankers, enabling the flight
with 250 total air refuelings. As the next generation fighter force
deploys more, it will rely more on a tanker fleet that is aging and
awaiting its own recapitalization.
Defense Secretary James Mattis, in his first visit to
NATO since his confirmation, warned the alliance that its member
countries must increase defense spending or the US support for the group
Retired MSgt. Kristopher Parker will be honored with a Silver Star for his actions on May 21, 2014, in Afghanistan.
ISIS has had to rely on inaccurate mortar and rocket
attacks in Mosul, along with commercial drones ferrying weapons across
the Euphrates River to hit Iraqi forces that are preparing to liberate
the western half of the city still held by the group.
The US military must think in terms of managing
long-term outcomes in the global war against terrorism, not decisively
winning the conflict, according to security experts who testified before
the House Armed Services Committee on Tuesday.
The Air Force wants a quick-turnaround additional
source of small, precision-guided, and maneuvering munitions to equip
the F-35 as early as next year. Longer term, the Air Force also is looking to develop a
new class of direct-attack munitions to equip the new Penetrating
Counter-Air jet and other stealthy platforms.
Senators from both parties pressed for further
investigation of ties between the Trump Administration and Russia,
following the resignation of National Security Advisor Michael Flynn
late Monday night.
Russia has reportedly deployed a new cruise missile in violation of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.
Setting limited goals and using airpower to help
achieve them is a winning strategy against terrorism, Michael Sheehan
told the House Armed Services Committee Tuesday. In military operations
against terrorist organizations, “aviation is a game changer,” said
A B-52 Stratofortress from the 96th Bomb Squadron,
Barksdale AFB, La., recently traveled to Edwards AFB, Calif., for
Hazards of Electromagnetic Radiation to Ordnance (HERO) testing.
Thirteen F-35As from Hill AFB, Utah, made an impressive
showing at the fifth generation aircraft’s first Red Flag exercise,
notching a 15:1 kill ratio, a mission capable rate of more than 90
percent, and setting the stage for future large-scale exercises and
DARPA is moving ahead with plans to develop
space-faring robots to inspect and fix satellites despite a lawsuit from
Orbital ATK saying those plans violate federal space policy.
An article in the Feb. 13 Daily Report incorrectly stated the date of a Minuteman III test launch. Prior to the Feb. 8 launch from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., the most recent test launch was in September 2016.
A KC-135 out of RAF Mildenhall, England, helped coordinate the rescue of 14 people stranded off the British coast for two days.
About 23,000 California National Guard airmen and
soldiers are on alert as the Oroville Dam threatens to fail, prompting
200,000 people to evacuate the area.
North Korea on Saturday tested an intermediate range
ballistic missile in one of the longest distance tests it has ever
accomplished, the Pentagon said.
Several B-1Bs and some 300 airmen from the 7th Bomb Wing at Dyess AFB, Texas, recently deployed to Andersen AFB, Guam.
The Air Force has upgraded retired Lt. Col. Gregory
Thornton’s Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor to a Silver Star for
his actions in Iraq in 2003.
Col. Christopher Barnett received two Silver Stars for
gallantry in combat operations in a ceremony at Maxwell AFB, Ala., last
Buried deep inside the Pentagon’s sprawling policy bill
is a little-noticed provision that would allow the Air Force to more
quickly hire mechanics and other civilian personnel at its three major
aircraft maintenance facilities, potentially giving the service a big
boost in its readiness rates. But the recent federal hiring freeze could slow efforts
to recruit and hire new workers at the depots, which are tasked with
maintaining the oldest fleet in Air Force history.
A team from the 91st Missile Wing at Minot AFB, N.D.,
launched an unarmed Minuteman III ICBM from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., on
The Air Force’s first class of solely operational combat F-35A pilots flew for the first time on Feb. 8.
About 130 airmen and F-16s from Misawa AB, Japan,
deployed to Andersen AFB, Guam, this week to participate in one of the
largest Pacific exercises hosted by the US Air Force.
Pacific Air Forces is sending 12 F-22 Raptors and 190
airmen to train with their Australian counterparts at Royal Australian
Air Force Base Tindal in February, marking the heaviest commitment of
fifth generation US fighters in Australia to date.
A B-52 Stratofortress takes off Feb. 8 at Barksdale
AFB, La. The B-52 is participating in Combat Hammer, an air-to-ground
weapon system evaluation program that is measuring the B-52’s accuracy and effectiveness of its munition employment.
The US-led coalition in January had its busiest month
of the entire air war against ISIS, dropping the most bombs in that span
since the campaign kicked off in 2014.
US and Russian officials again met via teleconference
on Wednesday to deconflict air operations in Syria as new operations
have further complicated the airspace.
Airmen and C-17s from JB Charleston, S.C., delivered
more than 130,000 pounds of humanitarian aid in early February to
Nicaragua and Haiti.
The top commander in Afghanistan said the US is not
winning the war there and laid out steps to change the course Thursday
at a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
The US military needs thousands of additional troops
to complete its mission in Afghanistan, Army Gen. John Nicholson,
commander of US Forces-Afghanistan, told the Senate Armed Services
Committee on Thursday.
US aircraft earlier this month killed 11 al Qaeda operatives and leaders over two days in Idlib, Syria, the Pentagon announced.
Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) sharply questioned the four
vice chiefs of the military services over the wisdom of beginning
another round of base realignment and closure in the midst of tight
military budgets Wednesday.
Senators on the Senate Armed Forces Readiness
Subcommittee agreed that the Department of Defense is suffering a
dangerous readiness shortfall because of a flawed federal budget
Asked if the Air Force could possibly “accelerate” its
bombing campaign as part of the coalition arrayed against ISIS, Chief
of Staff Gen. David Goldfein said yes, but “only if it’s coordinated
with the rest of the campaign."
The Defense Department will undertake a nuclear
posture review “this spring,” Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David
Goldfein told reporters Tuesday.
Former Air Force acquisition official Richard Lombardi
did not willfully fail to report a conflict of interest involving his
spouse’s Northrop Grumman retirement account and did not participate in any improper activities.
Reps. Mike Coffman (R-Colo.) and Derek Kilmer
(D-Wash.) introduced a bill Tuesday that would give access to mental
health screening for most military veterans.
The commander of the international coalition fighting
ISIS said Wednesday he expects the group’s main cities of Mosul, Iraq,
and Raqqa, Syria, to be retaken within the next six months.
The Air Force wants a more seamless inter-service space
enterprise and is offering the other services training and facilities
to build their own expertise, with the Air Force as the natural leader and coordinator, Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein told defense reporters Tuesday.
The Air Force pilot shortage is now more dire than
during the “hollow force” era of the late 1970s, Vice Chief of Staff
Gen. Stephen Wilson told the House Armed Services Committee Tuesday
Though Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein is
optimistic about the prospect of new monies flowing into the services,
as directed by President Donald Trump and Defense Secretary James
Mattis, he said Tuesday he’s cautious about building a new spending plan.
Another round of base realignment and closure could
save the Air Force $25 billion, Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson
Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson said the Air
Force is not ready to fight against a near-peer adversary, like Russia
or China, that would deploy fifth-generation capabilities.
The Air National Guard makes up 40 to 45 percent of the
Air Force’s airlift fleet and 30 to 35 percent of its combat fleet, but
there is a dramatic need to modernize or recapitalize these aircraft
and money has been short, said Air National Guard Director Lt. Gen.
Scott Rice on Tuesday.
Readiness within the Air Force is currently worse than
it was in the “hollow force” days of the late 1970s, Vice Chief of Staff
Gen. Stephen Wilson told the House Armed Services Committee Tuesday
morning. He raised the alarm before lawmakers, painting a dire picture
of the service’s state of affairs.
The Air National Guard is relying on the Active Duty’s
new remotely piloted aircraft wing to bolster its training
infrastructure and is looking for new investments to build up its own
bases as part of the service’s ongoing battle to get more drone pilots.
President Donald Trump on Monday made his first public
speech to a military crowd, promising changes to uniformed troops at
MacDill AFB, Fla.
Retired MSgt. Keary Miller has been awarded an Air
Force Cross for extraordinary heroism in combat for his actions near
Takur Ghar, Afghanistan, on Mar. 4, 2002.
China sent three warships to the Senkaku Islands on
Monday, just days after Defense Secretary James Mattis reaffirmed its
commitment to Japan’s ownership.
President Donald Trump spoke on the phone with NATO
Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg about a number of issues Sunday
evening, including NATO defense spending, the recent violence in
Ukraine, Russia policy, and counterterrorism efforts.
The Pentagon and Lockheed Martin’s handshake deal
on Lot 10 production of the F-35, announced Friday, brings the cost of
the F-35A model, which is used by the Air Force, below $100 million.
Twelve F-16s and about 200 airmen are deploying to Osan
AB, South Korea, from New Jersey this month to provide security in the
Air Mobility Command has reorganized its directorate
responsible for supporting nuclear deterrence, creating a “new focal
point” for nuclear policy within the command.
Defense Secretary James Mattis reassured South Korea
that it is moving forward with the deployment of a Terminal High
Altitude Area Defense system, even though China and Russia voiced
opposition to the move.
Six US Senators introduced legislation on Feb. 2 aimed
at cementing the permanent membership of the National Security Council
and clarifying that all members of the NSC must hold positions requiring
the advice and consent of the Senate.
Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein said he was recently
given five minutes with President Donald Trump, and he used his time to
emphasize the importance of space to the US military mission.
Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein said space
capabilities are already intimately engaged with ongoing US military
operations, and he offered an example from Operation Inherent Resolve to
illustrate his point.
Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein said the Air Force,
“is eager to be named the lead service for space,” and he wants to
“expand the joint presence in our formations,” meaning a greater role
for USAF space personnel throughout US military commands.
Lockheed Martin did not file an appeal with the Armed
Services Contract Board of Appeals regarding its dispute with the
Pentagon over the F-35 Lot 9 contract.
n the world of asymmetric threats to North America,
NORAD is focused on learning to track low-profile aircraft that fly
slowly at a low altitude, making it difficult to detect on radar.
Lockheed Martin has completed work ahead of schedule on
the first of 12 F-22 Raptors at its Inlet Coating Repair Speedline
facility in Marietta, Ga.
As NORAD’s mission for homeland defense shifts away
from a post-9/11 framework, a key requirement for dealing with the
threat of Russian long-range aviation and advanced cruise missiles is
persistent, over-the-horizon (OTH) radar.
One of the Air Force’s oldest aircraft has been among its busiest in the Middle East.
The Air Force expects to get its maintenance manning
back to 100 percent by 2020 or 2021, after being short 4,000 maintainers
just three and a half years ago.
Air Force rescue airmen from Patrick AFB, Fla., deployed recently for a four-month rotation to Africa and Afghanistan.
A Royal Netherlands Air Force KDC-10 tanker flew its
first mission as part of Operation Inherent Resolve on Feb. 1, refueling
multiple aircraft over a five and a half hour period.
Members of the 33rd Fighter Wing recently shot the
first live air-to-air missiles from operational F-35A strike fighters
during a Jan. 31 weapons system evaluation at Tyndall AFB, Fla.
The Marine Corps is looking to change tanker plans for
long-distance F-35B sorties after a recent flight to Japan required too
many refueling, the head of Marine aviation said.
President Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka Trump
made an unannounced trip to Dover AFB, Del., on Wednesday to witness the
return of a fallen Navy SEAL, who was killed during the first known
counter terrorism raid of his presidency.
Northrop Grumman received an Air Force contract on Jan.
21 to build a “coatings facility” at Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale,
The US-led coalition has delivered a “small” number of armored vehicles to fighters with the Syrian Arab Coalition in recent days—a move the coalition says is a large increase in US support.
Iraqi forces, bolstered by US-led coalition airstrikes,
took over an ISIS chemical weapons facility at Mosul University last
The Marine Corps is working to create a common
configuration of V-22 Ospreys, a move that the Air Force also has
expressed interest in, said USMC Lt. Gen. Jon Davis, deputy commandant
for aviation, on Wednesday.
The military will work through its directed review of
the F-35’s capabilities, related to the F/A-18 Super Hornet, though the
top Marine Corps officer in charge of aviation expects it will confirm
the military’s established plans.
A civilian contractor was killed and an airman hurt when an F-16
dropped an active weapon on a range during active weapons training at
Holloman AFB, N.M.
Defense Secretary James Mattis has outlined his “initial guidance” for strengthening the US military through the budget process.
Russian militarism in Europe and the Middle East indicates an elevated threat to North America as well, NORAD officials told Air Force Magazine.
The Air Force wants to add five more fighter squadrons
over the next five to 10 years, going from 55 to 60 total fighter
The NORAD mission—fundamentally shaped by the threat of
asymmetric terrorism since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001—is shifting
its focus once again to counter a significant threat from Russia, top
officials told Air Force Magazine.
The Air Force recently changed its policy toward
pregnant Reservists, allowing them to serve out their full Active Duty
Operational Support orders.
The Air Force is working with the Defense Department
and State Department to ensure that Iraqi F-16 pilots can come to
Arizona for training in spite of the ban on travel for citizens of seven
Muslim-majority countries, including Iraq.
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