Schwartz: Air Force Will Preserve ‘Core Contributions’

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. — Air Force lead­ers are focused on man­ag­ing poten­tial bud­get con­straints so that the ser­vice can con­tin­ue to pro­vide its unique con­tri­bu­tions to nation­al secu­ri­ty, the Air Force chief of staff said yes­ter­day.

Air Force Association's 2011 Air and Space Conference and Technology Exposition at National Harbor, Md.
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Nor­ton Schwartz speaks to atten­dees Sept. 20, 2011, at the Air Force Association’s 2011 Air and Space Con­fer­ence and Tech­nol­o­gy Expo­si­tion at Nation­al Har­bor, Md.
U.S. Air Force pho­to by Air­man 1st Class Melis­sa Goslin
Click to enlarge

Speak­ing before hun­dreds of atten­dees at the Air Force Association’s 2011 Air and Space Con­fer­ence and Tech­nol­o­gy Expo­si­tion here, Gen. Nor­ton A. Schwartz said ser­vice lead­ers will not allow bud­get pres­sures to cre­ate a future force that “mere­ly appears on paper to be effec­tive, but in real­i­ty is reduced sub­stan­tial­ly in depth and breadth.” Schwartz said the Air Force’s core con­tri­bu­tions reside in four main areas: con­trol and exploita­tion of the air and space domains, as well as mis­sion assur­ance in cyber­space; glob­al strike; rapid glob­al mobil­i­ty; and world­wide intel­li­gence, sur­veil­lance and reconnaissance. 

These four con­tri­bu­tions are enhanced by the Air Force’s supe­ri­or com­mand and con­trol net­works, Schwartz said. 

“In any bud­get sce­nario, we will be required to con­tin­ue pro­vid­ing capa­bil­i­ties that offer the nation’s lead­ers a wide range of strate­gic options for rapid and flex­i­ble pow­er pro­jec­tion,” Schwartz said. “Our core con­tri­bu­tions enable America’s glob­al per­spec­tive and result in appro­pri­ate­ly tai­lored effects at times and places of our choosing.” 

The Air Force’s unique capa­bil­i­ties are essen­tial for the nation’s strate­gic inter­ests, eco­nom­ic pros­per­i­ty and mil­i­tary readi­ness, Schwartz said, describ­ing the Unit­ed States as an “air and space nation.” 

“So as we may have to care­ful­ly con­sid­er reduced capac­i­ties in some areas while main­tain­ing, and per­haps increas­ing invest­ment in oth­ers, we must care­ful­ly con­sid­er and cal­i­brate our accep­tance of risk, man­i­fest­ed in a force that’s small­er in size and scale,” he said. 

Such “dif­fi­cult choic­es,” will extend into the Air Force’s pro­cure­ment pro­grams, the gen­er­al said. Future devel­op­ment efforts will have to be less ambi­tious, and gov­ern­ment and indus­try must appraise and adhere to gen­uine oper­a­tional require­ments and eval­u­ate man­u­fac­tura­bil­i­ty early. 

“We require straight talk from every­body,” Schwartz said. “Gov­ern­ment must ensure sta­ble require­ments and reli­able fund­ing streams, while indus­try must bid accord­ing to real­is­tic esti­mates, and resist offer­ing to sell more than what is oper­a­tional­ly required.” 

The Air Force’s acqui­si­tion corps is ready for such chal­lenges, giv­en the progress it has made over the last three years, he said. 

“Although we will always be account­able for respon­si­bly expend­ing hard-earned and pre­cious tax­pay­er dol­lars, we can regard our acqui­si­tion process­es and pro­ce­dures as hav­ing achieved a notable restora­tion of effec­tive con­trol and over­sight,” Schwartz said. 

Anoth­er area the Air Force has made sim­i­lar progress in since 2008 is the nuclear enter­prise. “With­out rest­ing on our lau­rels, we can be proud of the result: a nuclear enter­prise that is renewed and focused on its com­mit­ment to avoid­ing crit­i­cal per­for­mance short­falls,” he said. “Our work in this crit­i­cal area remains wor­thy, val­ued and essen­tial to our nation’s security.” 

To main­tain such excel­lence across the Air Force, the gen­er­al said the ser­vice will inten­si­fy its efforts to devel­op air­men, “arm­ing them with intel­lec­tu­al and expe­ri­en­tial strength that is on par with the advanced capa­bil­i­ties that our weapon sys­tems provide.” 

Schwartz acknowl­edged the excel­lence dis­played by all air­men by rec­og­niz­ing the achieve­ments of Staff Sgt. Robert Gutier­rez Jr., a joint ter­mi­nal attack con­troller who, despite suf­fer­ing seri­ous wounds, helped save his Spe­cial Forces team in Afghanistan dur­ing a Tal­iban attack by expert­ly call­ing in air strikes. 

Sec­re­tary of the Air Force Michael B. Don­ley recent­ly approved the award­ing of the Air Force Cross, the service’s high­est mil­i­tary hon­or, to Gutier­rez, Schwartz announced dur­ing his remarks. 

While air­men face a future of fis­cal and oper­a­tional chal­lenges, Schwartz said he remains con­fi­dent that the Air Force will remain ready to defend the nation and its freedoms. 

“The U.S. Air Force will be pre­pared for what­ev­er the nation requires of us,” he said. “We will pro­vide the many util­i­ties of air­pow­er, as only air­men can pro­vide it: vital in the nation­al con­text and indis­pens­able in the proud pur­suit of our nation’s interests. 

“We will be there for our joint team­mates and for the nation,” he con­tin­ued. “We will do it, or we’ll die trying.” 

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs) 

Face­book and/or on Twit­ter

Team GlobDef

Seit 2001 ist im Internet unterwegs, um mit eigenen Analysen, interessanten Kooperationen und umfassenden Informationen für einen spannenden Überblick der Weltlage zu sorgen. war dabei die erste deutschsprachige Internetseite, die mit dem Schwerpunkt Sicherheitspolitik außerhalb von Hochschulen oder Instituten aufgetreten ist.

Alle Beiträge ansehen von Team GlobDef →