Air Force

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The mission of the United States Air Force is to fly, fight and win in the air, space, and cyberspace.

World War II had been over for two years and the Korean War lay three years ahead when the Air Force ended a 40-year association with the U.S. Army to become a separate service. The U.S. Air Force thus entered a new era in which airpower became firmly established as a major element of the nation’s defense and one of its chief hopes for deterring war. The Department of the Air Force was created when President Harry S Truman signed the National Security Act of 1947.

The Air Force has three core competencies: Developing Airmen, Technology-to-Warfighting and Integrating Operations. These core competencies make six distinctive capabilities possible: 

Air and Space Superiority:  With it, joint forces can dominate enemy operations in all dimensions -- land, sea, air and space. 

Global Attack:  Because of technological advances, the Air Force can attack anywhere, anytime -- and do so quickly and with greater precision than ever before. 

Rapid Global Mobility:  Being able to respond quickly and decisively anywhere needed is key to maintaining rapid global mobility. 

Precision Engagement:  The essence lies in the ability to apply selective force against specific targets because the nature and variety of future contingencies demand both precise and reliable use of military power with minimal risk and collateral damage. 

Information Superiority:  The ability of joint force commanders to keep pace with information and incorporate it into a campaign plan is crucial. 

Agile Combat Support:  Deployment and sustainment are keys to successful operations and cannot be separated. Agile combat support applies to all forces, from those permanently based to contingency buildups to expeditionary forces.

The Department of the Air Force is headquartered in the Pentagon, Washington D.C. The service is organized in nine major commands throughout the world which provide combat aircraft, airlift, refueling, reconnaissance and other support to the Unified Combatant Commands. 

The Air Force also has more than three dozen field operating agencies and direct reporting units which directly support the mission by providing unique services.

There are approximately 332,000 airmen currently serving across the globe.

Tougher Basic Training Trims Air Force Academy's Freshman Class

Basic cadets navigate the monkey bars on the obstacle course in the U.S. Air Force Academy's Jacks Valley during the field portion of their Basis Cadet Training July 22, 2015, in Colorado Springs, Colo. Liz Copan/U.S. Air Force

The Air Force Academy's class of 2019 will finish basic training about 6 percent smaller than it was when the basics arrived at the school in June. The class, which began with 1,248 would-be cadets on June 26, ended Saturday. But a basic training that commanders call the most challenging test of cadets in recent years pared the ranks to 1,177 -... more

Air Reserve Revises IRR Guide

The Headquarters Individual Reservist Readiness and Integration Organization has released a completely revised version of the Guide for Individual Reservists. The document, which is an A-to-Z guide on how to manage an IR career, received its most extensive overhaul in three years. Changes include updated language reflecting last year's transitio... more


Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James A. Cody addressed several topics during his latest CHIEFchat, including the new enlisted performance report (EPR) and Course 15. The chief acknowledged the criticism on why the EPR form has not been officially released. Cody said that because the form is more interactive, they are currently working on finalizing the scripts that make the form work. Also, distance-learning students enrolled in enlisted P... more

Seeing Double: Twins Defend Andersen Air Force Base Together

Airmen 1st Class Colby (left) and Travis Wakefield, 36th Security Forces Squadron entry controllers, stand at the entry to Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, July 29, 2015. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alexa Ann Henderson/Released)

ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam -- There are two very similar Airmen one may encounter while driving through the gates at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam. Though not exactly identical, they could almost be the same person, but one has longer hair. They have the same Washington state accent, stand at about the same height with little difference in th... more

General to Air Force Academy Graduates: You're Idiots

Air Force Academy graduates throw their caps into the air as F-16 jets from the Thunderbirds make a flyover, at the completion of the graduation ceremony for the class of 2015, at the U.S. Air Force Academy, May 28, 2015. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)

A graduation speaker at the Air Force Academy had an odd message for three cadets who joined the ranks of the class of 2015 after wrapping up summer work last week. "You're idiots," retired Brig. Gen. Robert Giffen said during a ceremony at the academy's visitor's center. Giffen said wasn't setting out to insult cadets Taylor Amundsen, Cherie ... more

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