Wilson: US in Talks with Turkey on Purchase of Russian S-400 Missile System
Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson told a Washington gathering Tuesday that the Trump Administration is in talks with Turkey over the plan by that country, a NATO member, to buy the modern S-400 anti-aircraft missile system from Russia. Wilson said the move “”does present some operational problems that we’re discussing with Turkey.” Read the full story by Steve Hirsch.
USAF Releases A-10 Re-Winging RFP
The Air Force on Friday released the official request for proposals to re-wing its A-10 fleet. The service is seeking an indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract for what it has titled the A-10 Thunderbolt Advanced-Wing Continuation Kitting (ATTACK) assemblies, with a five-year ordering period following by two optional ordering periods if the service decides to continue. The wings will be delivered over a four-year period after the orders are placed, according to the posting ?on FedBizOpps. The service is looking to buy 112 wing sets and 15 kits. Responses are due by Aug. 23. Under a previous contract with Boeing, 171 A-10s had already been upgraded, but that program “came to the end of its life for cost and other reasons,” the Air Force said.—Brian Everstine
Moody A-10 Pilots Receive Distinguished Flying Crosses
Two A-10 pilots with the 74th Fighter Squadron from Moody AFB, Ga., received Distinguished Flying Crosses for supporting US-backed fighters inside Syria. Maj. Matthew Cichowski and Capt. William Dana were deployed to Incirlik AB, Turkey, as part of Operation Inherent Resolve and risked life and limb” to support Syrian Democratic Forces that were under attack. Dana and a wingman, on Aug. 14, 2017, were notified by a Joint Terminal Attack Controller that friendly forces were under attack, and immediately felt a “sense of urgency” and “needed to get out there quickly because good guys were dying,” Dana said in a rel?ease. Throughout a three-hour period, Dana dropped 11,000 pounds of ordnance, killing 37 enemies and destroying 10 enemy positions with no friendly losses. As he became low on fuel, Dana decided to strike within danger close range, destroying a building that was within 30 feet of friendly forces. On Jan. 9, 2018, Cichowski was on a routine mission when he and his wingman were alerted by a JTAC that friendly forces were taking fire. He faced accurate surface-to-air fire, and struck enemy forces that outnumbered friendly forces 3-to-1, the release states. Cichowski identified 25 enemy fighters about 150 meters away from friendly forces, and employed both a Joint Direct Attack Munition and the A-10’s GAU-8 gun to take out the enemy fighters. “It’s unbelievable to get a mission like this and to see the enemies’ control of the area shrink each week,” Dana said in the release. “The sense of pride I have to effect the fight the way we did leaves me at a loss for words.” —Brian Everstine
Air Force Starts MQ-9 Operations out of Poland
The Air Force recently began flying MQ-9s out of Poland, the service announced last week. Citing the US-Polish interests in addressing regional and global security issues, the announcement said the MQ-9s are being operated at Miroslawiec Air Base “as a visible expression of U.S. efforts to enhance regional stability.” The mission is coordinated with Poland and “is designed to promote stability and security within the region and to strengthen relationships with NATO allies and other European partners. “ —Steve Hirsch
NATO to Begin Air Patrols in Montenegro
NATO will begin air patrols on June 5 to protect Montenegro air space, about one year after the country joined the alliance. Montenegro does not have an air force, so Italy and Greece will deploy next week for NATO’s newest air policing mission. Under NATO regulations, allied air forces need at least two aircraft on alert, according to a NATO release. In addition to this mission, Spain, Portugal, and France are currently deployed for air policing missions in Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia, according to NATO. Additionally, Italy helps patrol Slovenian airspace and the United Kingdom supports air patrols in Romania. —Brian Everstine
—A1C Isaiah Edwards has been charged with the murder of A1C Bradley Hale while both were in Guam. Edwards is in custody at Barksdale AFB, La.: Associated Press.
—Col. Brenda Cartier is slated to become the first female air commando brigadier general in the Air Force Special Operations Command after being nominated to be AFSOC operations director. Cartier is now commander of the 58th Special Operations Wing at Kirtland AFB, N.M.: Military.com.
—Ramstein AB, Germany, is believed to be the first overseas base to change the employment status for third-country nationals to the host-nation or non-U.S. employment program, a change that will increase their benefits and job security, but may cut their take-home pay: Stars and Stripes.
—The remains of USAF Col. Peter J. Stewart, whose F-4C Phantom jet was shot down over North Vietnam on March 15, 1966, have been identified. Stewart was deployed to Vietnam less than a year before his plane went down: Ocala Star-Banner.
—J. Reece Roth, a former director of the Plasma Sciences Laboratory at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville and former Air Force researcher who spent four years in prison for export controls violations, claims the issue was academic freedom, not giving China secrets: The Daily Beast.
—Poland, concerned about Russia, is offering as much as $2 billion for a permanent US military base there, according to a Defense Ministry proposal a Polish news site has obtained: Politico.