Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr.

Meet Your Next Chief of Staff of the Air Force: Gen. Charles Q. Brown

President Trump nominated Gen. Charles Q. Brown, head of Pacific Air Forces, to be the next Air Force Chief of Staff, succeeding Gen. David Goldfein, who retires this summer. If confirmed, Brown would be the first African American to serve as Chief of Staff of any of the U.S. Armed Forces. The only other African American to serve on the Joint Chiefs of Staff was Army Gen. Colin Powell, who was Chairman from 1989-1993. "I am truly honored and humbled by the nomination to serve as the Air Force's 22nd Chief of Staff," Brown said in March 2 statement. "If confirmed, Sharene and I look forward to building upon the legacy of Gen. Dave and Dawn Goldfein, and the many airpower giants before who have served our Air Force and our nation with such dedication."
Gen. Charles Q. Brown

Here’s What the Next Chief Was Saying Last Week

Gen. Charles Q. Brown sat down with reporters at AFA’s Air Warfare Symposium, just days before officially being tapped as the next Chief of Staff of the Air Force. The wide-ranging interview touched on Joint All-Domain Command and Control, logistics while under attack, the challenges facing U.S. forces in the vast Indo-Pacific region, and standing up the Space Force. Read what he had to say on nine pressing topics he’ll have to deal with as Chief of Staff.
SecDef Esper Speaks at U.S.-Afghanistan Joint Declaration Announcement

Afghanistan Drawdown Gets Green Light Despite Recent Violence

U.S. forces have the green light to begin withdrawing from Afghanistan under the recently signed deal with the Taliban, even though some pockets of violence have already returned. Defense Secretary Mark Esper urged Gen. Austin Miller, the commander of Operation Resolute Support, to “get moving and show our full faith and effort” with the deal. Under the agreement, US forces will initially draw down from about 12,000 to 8,600, with a full withdrawal expected within 14 months. For now, the U.S. will “maintain whatever capability is necessary to defend the United States against terrorists,” Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said.

Roper: The ARRW Hypersonic Missile Better Option for USAF

The Air Force picked the AGM-183 Air-launched Rapid Response Weapon hypersonic missile over the Hypersonic Conventional Strike Weapon because it's more advanced and is a better match to the Air Force's needs, and the HCSW just didn't fit in an overcrowded budget, service acquisition chief Will Roper said. “The reason we went with ARRW was not that HCSW was bad, but ARRW is smaller; we can carry twice as many on the B-52, and it’s possible it could be on the F-15 … It’s in the class to be able to fit on the centerline” station, Roper told reporters at AFA’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla. Though he didn’t elaborate on this point, the F-15 could accelerate the ARRW to Mach 3 before launch, potentially reducing the size of the booster needed to get the weapon to hypersonic speed.
022920 Spark Tank

Spark Tank Tie: Threat Emitter, Weapons-Loading Checklist Take Top Honors

In a first for Spark Tank, the Air Force’s Airman-powered innovation competition, two teams were named co-champions. The winning ideas that bested over 200 other submissions—six of which were live-pitched onstage at the Air Force Association’s 2020 Air Warfare Symposium here on Feb. 28—look to improve the quality of F-35 pilot training, and to add speed and efficiency to the weapons-loading process. USAF acquisition chief Will Roper decided to award a third team the 3D printer it requested, and AFWERX Marketing Manager Jordyn Fetter told Air Force Magazine senior leadership has requested every Airman who took part in the Feb. 28 event get "support to make their idea a reality. So, we consider them all winners."
Goldfein Air Warfare Symposium

Air Force Updates Song to be More Inclusive

The Air Force has updated its official song to be more inclusive of the women who wear the uniform, Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein announced. The third verse of the song, which originally included the lines “to a friend we send a message of his brother men who fly” and “a toast to the host of men we boast, the U.S. Air Force” was clearly exclusive, Goldfein said. This wasn’t intentional—the song dates back to the late 1930s and was officially adopted in 1947—but it needed to be updated to better define the makeup of the service.
Dawn Goldfein at Key Spouse conference

First USAF-Level Key Spouse Conference Focuses on Quality of Life Issues

The top couple in the Air Force on Feb. 27 hosted the first-ever Air Force-level Key Spouse conference, bringing together 300 spouses from across the service to discuss issues they all face and to find ways to improve the quality of life in the service. “Our key spouses are probably our most important retention tools,” said Dawn Goldfein, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein’s spouse, who hosted the event. “If we don’t take care of our families, who’s going to stay?”

Radar Sweep

U.S. Loses Drone Over Niger

Military Times

The U.S. military says it lost an MQ-1 drone on Feb. 29 near Agadez, Niger, according to U.S. Africa Command. “Our initial and current assessment is that the RPA [remotely piloted aircraft] was lost due to mechanical failure. We do not believe the RPA was lost as a result of any hostile action,” Navy Lt. Christina M. Gibson, a spokeswoman with U.S. Africa Command, told Military Times in an email March 2.

A Hacker Group Says It Has Major Defense Companies’ Data

Fifth Domain

A manufacturing subcontractor in the defense industry has become the latest victim of hackers, Emsisoft told Fifth Domain. Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, Boeing, and SpaceX are among dozens of companies named as victims of compromised data, accessed through the hacking of Visser Precision LLC, a Colorado-based aerospace, automotive, and industrial parts manufacturer. DoppelPaymer, a ransomware group, perpetrated the hack, according to Brett Callow, a threat analyst with Emsisoft.

Rapid Acquisition & Sustainment

Air Force Magazine

All the news and insight on the Air Force’s moves to streamline acquisition and accelerate the future. Check out our comprehensive landing page for USAF acquisition coverage.

OPINION: Sorry, Elon, Fighter Pilots Will Fly and Fight for a Long Time

Defense News

“Despite impressive gains in autonomous technology, manned fighter aircraft will continue to provide the underpinnings of the air superiority mission for decades into the future,” writes Doug Birkey, executive director of the Air Force Association’s Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies.

OPINION: No, Elon Musk: The Era Of The Manned Fighter Jet Won’t Be Over Anytime Soon


“His proclamations, while perhaps ‘fascinating,’ are actually fallacious for a time when modernized manned fighter aircraft are needed to deter, and if necessary, fight and win,” writes retired Air Force Lt. Gen. David Deptula, dean of AFA’s Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies. “For the next several decades, air superiority depends on fielding fifth- and next-generation aircraft, namely the F-35 and the next-generation air dominance (NGAD) system. There is no chance some auto-park technology can replace them.”

Vice Chief’s Challenge Is Back—to Save Airmen Time

USAF release

The Department of the Air Force is focused on working faster and smarter, leveraging technology to give Airmen back their most important resource—their time. That’s the intent of this year‘s Vice Chief’s Challenge, which will allow Airmen to pitch ideas and solve problems related to automation or elimination of menial tasks.

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Closures at U.S. Bases in Italy Continue as Coronavirus Spreads

Stars and Stripes

U.S. bases in northern Italy entered a second week of school, day care, and gym closures as the country’s cases of the new coronavirus doubled over the weekend. The number of confirmed cases jumped to 1,694 in Italy, the country’s Civil Protection Agency reported March 1. The death toll also rose to 34, up from 29 the previous day.