Air Force Special Operations Command activated the Special Tactics Training Squadron June 1 at Hurlburt Field, Fla. The newly designated unit was formerly the Advanced Skills Training Flight under the base’s 720th Operations Support Squadron. The new training squadron, which currently has about 56 instructors, will now fall under the 720th Special Tactics Group until October, when it moves under the Air Force Special Operations Training Center, which will stand up then. The STTS performs the final phase of training for combat controllers and special tactics officers before they depart for operational special tactics squadrons. The unit’s scope is expected to grow. For example, it will train more special operations weather airmen as that career field expands. (Hurlburt report by 1st Lt. Amy Cooper)
The Air Force will begin its 71st annual Operation Christmas Drop on Dec. 4. The weeklong exercise is a yearly tradition that delivers supplies such as food, fishing equipment, school books, and clothes to remote islands in the Pacific. It is the longest-running Department of Defense humanitarian mission.