Andersen Detachment on Hold, For Now

Pacific Air Force officials have not yet signed a memorandum of understanding that would allow Air Force Global Strike Command to set up a detachment of personnel at Andersen AFB, Guam, to support the command’s continuous bomber presence mission. “We are still in discussions with AFGSC regarding the MOU,” PACAF spokesman MSgt. Matthew McGovern told Air Force Magazine. “Currently, we are determining how the detachment will operate within the PACAF chain of command. This, understandably, raises questions regarding administrative and operational control.” Global Strike has proposed a detachment of roughly 30 Active Duty personnel in a variety of specialties, including mission planners, combat crew communications, a flight safety officer, a standardization and evaluation officer, as well as maintainers, former AFGSC boss Lt. Gen. Stephen Wilson said in June. Lt. Col. Michael Pritchett, who has been tapped to lead the detachment, was originally expected to deploy to Andersen in September along with his superintendent, while the rest of the personnel were slated to arrive by December. However, those deployments are on hold until the MOU is signed, AFGSC officials said. “I cannot provide a specific date of completion, but both of our commands are working closely to ensure effective, responsive lines of control,” said McGovern. “PACAF has maintained close working ties with AFGSC since its founding and we believe this detachment will further enhance our relationship.” (See also Bombers on Guam from the August issue of Air Force Magazine.)