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SECAF visits Airmen, Guardians, sees AFFORGEN in action

  • Published
  • Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall visited U.S. Air Force Airmen and U.S. Space Force Guardians deployed throughout the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility Dec. 4-11, as part of a senior leader visit to thank Airmen and Guardians for their expeditionary service during the holiday season.

During his visit with the first Airmen to deploy under the new Air Force Force Generation model, Kendall learned about how Airmen and Guardians are delivering capabilities, developing critical relationships with allies and partners and supporting the enduring defense initiatives throughout the region.

“First and foremost, I'm here to say thank you for your service to the country and for what you’re doing,” said Kendall during an all-call with service members. “You remain focused on providing presence and stability in a critical region of the world. What you do is not easy, and it is especially challenging during this time of the year when our thoughts turn to home and loved ones. Please know my sincere appreciation, our nation is indebted to the sacrifice made by you and your families.”

During these all-call sessions, Kendall took a variety of questions, including on the future direction of the Department of the Air Force.

“As I got to know the Air Force and the Space Force more intimately, it became more apparent to me that we need to make some changes,” Kendall said. “A major effort is underway with Chief of Staff [of the Air Force Gen. David W.] Allvin and Chief of Space Operations [of the Space Force Gen. Chance] Saltzman is to look at our current posture, how we are organized to fight, how we train and how we equip. We will be making a series of announcements regarding changes to make the current forces as capable as possible for the most difficult security challenges we currently face.”

Kendall also received updates on how the United States and regional partners are postured to defend common security interests through multilateral coalitions of competent, capable and integrated air dominance forces.

Through his visits with the 332nd, 378th, 379th, 380th, and 386th Air Expeditionary Wings, the 609th Air Operations Center, and the Combined Air Operations Center, he highlighted the value of sustaining relationships with joint and coalition partners.

“A key element of our strategy is integrated deterrence, the idea that we integrate not just U.S. capabilities but the capabilities of our partners—our success in this part of the world depends upon having strong partners that we can work with,” Kendall said. “The multi-national team at the CAOC is a striking example of the teamwork we have fostered and continue to build.”

Throughout the tour, Kendall recognized top performers for their hard work and dedication to the Air Force and Space Force missions conducting combat operations in support of U.S. national security objectives throughout the Middle East.

“You are deeply appreciated,” Kendall said. “Every day your senior leadership teams get up and head to work knowing that supporting you is our core purpose, and we will continue to do that for you.”