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Proposed force structure changes affect AETC

  • Published
  • By Ann Stefanek
  • Air Education and Training Command Public Affairs
Air Force officials announced proposed force structure changes that support the new Defense Department strategic guidance, retiring or moving aircraft from Air Education and Training Command bases during the next five years, beginning in fiscal year 2013.

According to Secretary of the Air Force, the Honorable Michael Donley, the Air Force is shaping itself for future challenges by realigning Air Force assets with the Defense Department's new strategic guidance.

"We've had to adjust our force structure based on our strategic objectives and to balance capability and capacity with constrained budgets," Donley said. "We must have the right tools and enough of them to credibly deter potential adversaries and to deliver on our objectives."

The new strategic guidance requires the joint force to be capable of fighting one large scale, combined arms campaign with sufficient combat power to also deny a second adversary, and de-emphasized large-scale, prolonged stability operations. The Air Force's approach to this new strategy is to retire fighter, mobility, and ISR that are beyond those needed to meet the capacity requirements of the new defense strategic guidance.

"Where possible, we attempted to retire all aircraft of a specific type, allowing us to also divest the unique training and logistic support structure for that aircraft," Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz explained. "When that was not possible, we worked to retire the oldest aircraft first, and redistributed aircraft into effective and economical units, eliminating other units when that was most efficient. Where we retained older aircraft, we are taking steps to ensure they will remain viable into the future."

"Air Education and Training command will continue its mission to produce Airmen who possess the tactical expertise, the operational competence, and the strategic vision to execute and lead the full spectrum of Air Force missions," said AETC Commander, Gen. Edward A. Rice, Jr. Although resources are constrained, the general said recruiting and training will continue to adapt and improve.

"We have an opportunity to build a fundamentally different construct for recruiting, educating and training the force," Rice said. "If we do it right, it will require less resources and be more effective."

Total force aircraft reductions at AETC bases by FY13:

Retire three active component KC-135s at Altus AFB, Okla.
Begin retirement of C-5A fleet at Joint Base San Antonio, Lackland AFB, Texas.

Proposed FY14 actions:
Remove seven C-130Hs from Maxwell AFB, Ala.
Remove 10 C-130Js from Keesler AFB, Miss.

Proposed FY15 actions:
Retire two additional Air Force Reserve C-5As at JBSA, Texas.

Proposed FY16 actions:
Complete retirement of the Air Force Reserve C-5A fleet by divesting the six remaining aircraft at JBSA, Texas.
Transfer eight C-5Ms within the Air Force Reserve from Westover ARB, Mass. to JBSA, Texas, replacing C-5As.

Proposed FY17 actions:
Remove three Reserve Component C-130Hs from Little Rock AFB, Ark.
Replace six Active Component C-130H3s at Little Rock AFB, Ark. with seven C-130H1s.

For more information about the Fiscal 2013 Force Structure overview, see the news story on the Air Force web site at: http://www.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123288620.

Master Sgt. Rebecca Danét and Dianne Moffett, Air Education and Training Command Public Affairs, contributed to this story.
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