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.

Air Force Officials Review Article Lauding NCO’s Missionary Work

Senior Master Sgt. Larry Gallo, 433rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, maintenance support section chief from Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas poses with children in a village near San Raimundo, Guatemala.

The Air Force Reserve Command is expected to decide Friday whether a Reserve feature story about a senior master sergeant who proselytizes in Guatemala with his family should have been posted on the command's official webpage. And now whether the story should be pulled. The article, "Reservist finds true meaning in Guatemala," is running w... more

Air Force One Selection Could Mean More Jobs at Wright-Patterson

VC-25 Air Force One

Wright-Patterson may gain more jobs with Air Force selection of the Boeing 747-8 as the replacement for the current Air Force One fleet. The new four-engine, wide-body jets would replace two Air Force VC-25s, the current Air Force One aircraft based on the commercial airliner the 747-200B, which have been in service since the early 1990s. The ... more

Lackland Instructor Guilty in Recruit's 1995 Rape


A jury Thursday found a veteran Air Force NCO guilty of raping a recruit he was charged with training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland a decade ago. He also was found guilty of raping a former wife in 2007. Air Force Master Sgt. Michael Silva had been charged with raping three women over a 16-year period, and will now face the punishment pha... more

Air Force Risks Becoming Too Small to Succeed Under Sequestration

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee Jan. 28, 2015, in Washington, D.C., as Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Joesph F. Dunford Jr., looks on. (U.S. Air Force photo/Scott M. Ash)

WASHINGTON -- During testimony on Capitol Hill Jan. 28, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III stressed the negative impact sequestration will have on future Air Force capabilities, emphasizing further budget cuts will lead to low morale and declined readiness in the Air Force. “Pilots sitting in a squadron looking out at their airplan... more

Sequestration Casts Shadow on Shrinking, Aging Air Force Fleet

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WASHINGTON -- Today's Air Force is not only smaller, but its diminutive fleet is older than it has ever been, the service's chief of staff said Jan. 28 in remarks at the Senate Armed Services Committee. Air Force Gen. Mark A. Welsh III reported to Congress that the challenge to modernize won't be easy, and will require accepting prudent operati... more

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