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SECAF: Education greatest weapon

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Scott Moorman
  • Air University Public Affairs
Secretary of the Air Force Michael W. Wynne visited Air University here Monday and addressed the next generation of military leaders.

The audience consisted of newly commissioned second lieutenants enrolled in the Air and Space Basic Course, majors and civilians attending Air Command and Staff College, and colonels enrolled in the Commanders' Professional Development School.

Secretary Wynne said it was an honor to be in the cradle of Air Force education and focused much of his speech on the need for innovation and the pursuit of advanced education in today's Air Force. "The critical thinking you develop here in the classroom will pay greater dividends in the long run than any other weapon we are developing," Secretary Wynne said.

He then told the group of Air University students that America must continue its investment in education to maintain its superiority. He said it was important for all Airmen to share a common understanding of history, doctrine, and air and space power. "The heroes of the past had a great appreciation for the history of warfare and understood the doctrine of their day," he said. "It was only with this foundation that they were able to be creative with the new technologies of their time."

Secretary Wynne discussed the similarities between early Air Force pioneers like Gen. Curtis LeMay and Gen. Bernard Schriever's use of technology to today's mission and the current array of capabilities the Air Force brings to the interdependent joint fight. "Instead of being forward deployed, our Airmen leverage reach-back technology to fly Predators from a world away at Nellis (Air Force Base, Nev.)," he said. "Our Air Force could not do these things unless we had Airmen who've become well versed in cutting-edge technology."

The secretary told the audience the Air Force needs leaders who remove barriers to mission accomplishment and encourage education, exploration and innovation for their people. "This is the essence of Air Force Smart Operations," he said.

Secretary Wynne said education was a springboard of innovation and reminded the group of Airmen they may be called upon to make tough decisions and will be armed with education, backed by experience and integrity. "Make education a priority throughout your career, and doors will continue to open."
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