NAVAL AIR STATION FORT WORTH JOINT RESERVE BASE, Texas --
Hello, 10th Air Force Airmen and Families! I’ve been your Vice Commander for about 18 months now, and it’s been an impressive experience. In case you didn’t know, 10th Air Force is unique in the Air Force as it’s a “horizontal slice” of all of Big Air Force’s combat capabilities, and while it’s easy to think of 10th as “the Fighter NAF,” we’re more than that, and our other missions like rescue, special operations, bombers, Command and Control, intel, cyber, and space are equally important.
With that in mind, I want to take a couple minutes and highlight some Air Force-level changes that will soon affect our cyber and space missions.
First, earlier last month the Air Force announced that its 39 Cyber Mission Force teams had reached full operational capability, four months ahead of schedule. Our 960th Cyber Operations Group, headquartered at Joint Base San Antonio has one of these 133-person teams supporting US Cyber Command. This is a fantastic achievement and our Airmen at the 960th should feel a sense of pride in contributing to this success.
Next is a reporting change for Air Force cyber forces that will go into effect later this year. Today, Air Force Space Command is the Air Force’s mission owner for cyber. On October 1, the mission will transfer to Air Combat Command, along with 24th Air Force. Day-to-day there should be no significant difference in how we do our business as Airmen at the 960th will remain under 10th; just know that over time the Air Force’s cyber guidance will flow from ACC and not AFSPC.
Looking at the Air Force’s space portfolio, there are changes coming quickly, and some of these will impact AFRC and 10th Air Force. First, beginning with the President, and moving through Congress, the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of the Air Force, and the Chief of Staff, there is a renewed focus on the importance of space to our national security. Every major weapon system, including every system operated by our 310th Space Wing, is being reviewed for its ability to survive and prevail in a contested environment, and as a result many of these are being redesigned and recapitalized at an accelerated pace. To make this happen, Congress is currently considering an addition of almost 7 billion dollars to the Air Force’s space budget, beginning in Fiscal Year 19.
In addition to putting money against space systems, the Air Force is also adding people to this mission, and here 10th Air Force is playing a significant role. This year, the 26th Space Aggressors, under our 926th Wing, added 55 positions to its manning document to support realistic training and tactics development for our Air Force. This marks the first growth to the Air Force’s space aggressor mission in many years. Looking ahead to Fiscal Year 20, Air Force Space Command is asking the Active Duty Air Force, Air National Guard, and Air Force Reserve to add significant manpower numbers for new missions as well as increasing capability in current operations, testing, and training. The exact amount of manpower being requested and the outcome of this request will be settled early next year.
Before I go, I want to tell each and every one of you that General Miller, Command Chief Loper, myself, and the entire 10th Air Force staff appreciate you and the sacrifices you, your families, and your employers make for our Nation. While I’ve spent a couple minutes focusing on our space and cyber missions, know that all of our missions, and more importantly all of you, are valued to us. Keep up the good work and I hope to see you soon!