Wednesday, June 27, 2012

PTSD Awareness Day

To bring greater attention to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the United States Senate designated June 27th as National PTSD Awareness Day, now in its third year.

So many of our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines have suffered from posttraumatic stress disorder -- an anxiety disorder resulting from a traumatic event that is life-threatening to the individual and/or to others. It's so important to learn the symptoms to get the help that is needed.

This Day in History: US air and sea forces ordered to help South Korea

Fifth Air Force, Korea. B-26 (Courtesy of National Archives)
On this day in history -- June 27, 1950 -- President Truman ordered US air and sea forces to help the South Korean régime. It was a mere two days after the North Korean People’s Army (NKPA) crossed the 38th parallel border into South Korea, intending to reunite the country under one central communist rule.

On the 28th Truman authorized the Commander in Chief Far East to use certain supporting ground units in Korea, and authorized the U.S. Air Force to conduct missions on specific targets in North Korea. On the 30th the President further authorized the C. in C. Far East to use all forces available to him to repel the invasion, and ordered a naval blockade of the entire coast of Korea.

On this day in history -- June 27, 1950 -- President Truman ordered US air and sea forces to help the South Korean régime. It was a mere two days after the North Korean People’s Army (NKPA) crossed the 38th parallel border into South Korea, intending to take it over.

On the 28th he authorized the Commander in Chief Far East to use certain supporting ground units in Korea, and authorized the U.S. Air Force to conduct missions on specific targets in North Korea. On the 30th the President further authorized the C. in C. Far East to use all forces available to him to repel the invasion, and ordered a naval blockade of the entire coast of Korea.

By this time, the U.S. Air Force had gained independence based on its success in World War II and the effects of strategic bombing. However, since the end of World War II, there was a stronger focus on preparing for nuclear war. Investment followed the focus. This left the Far East Air Force (FEAF), the U.S. Air Force’s force in Asia, with aging aircraft and too few men to fly them as they were ordered to Korea.

Air Force Chief of Staff Hoyt Vandenburg called FEAF "the shoestring Air Force."

Like the rest of the American military establishment, the Air Force was in no way prepared for battle at the western rim of the Pacific. Yet the USAF did the best with what he had, responding quickly and effectively, proving in many ways the utility of airpower in modern war.

With virtually no warning, the Air Force injected itself into the war in the first critical week. It transported troops and equipment, evacuated American nationals, provided significant intelligence through aerial reconnaissance, and most importantly helped to slow the North Korean advance so that the United Nations forces could construct a defensive position on the peninsula.

In addition, the Korean War was the first time U.S. jet aircraft entered into battle. The F-86 Sabre was of much use, conducting most of the air-to-air fighting, battling the Soviet-built MiG-15 fighters. 

World War II-era F-51D Mustangs were pressed into the ground-air support role, and large formations of B-29 Superfortresses flew for the last time on strategic bombardment missions. While strategic bombing did not yield any apparent results, air interdiction was more successful, especially as there were very few roads or railroads leading from the north to the south. The raids focused on NKPA’s supply routes to stop the flow of reinforcements and supplies.  

Airlift techniques from the Berlin Airlift were perfected during Korea. Airlifts were especially important during the first year of the war when rapid advances and retreats would sometimes cut ground units off from the main force. The Korean War also saw the first large-scale use of rotary-wing helicopters.

The Korean War saw another case of a strong partnership across the Services. Finally, on July 27, 1953 an armistice was signed between the United States, North Korea, and China. (However, there is still no peace treaty.)

For more information about airpower in the Korean War, check out:

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

AFA in the Journal of International Security Affairs

"Today, the overwhelming focus of the United States and its allies is aimed at stopping Iran from securing a nuclear weapon. The ongoing nuclear weapons program of North Korea appears to be, at best, a serious but somewhat secondary consideration. Yet the two programs are inexorably intertwined, and are part of an identical strategy adopted by these two rogue states and their allies to harm U.S. security interests."

This is just the mere introduction to an 8-page article entitled "Our Pyongyang Problem," recently published in the Journal of International Security Affairs written by AFA's President and CEO, Mike Dunn, along with Peter Huessy, President of GeoStrategic Analysis and a senior defense consultant to AFA.

The piece contextualizes the global threats faced by North Korea, mentions the the failed diplomatic attempts from the international community to suspend NK's covert nuclear weapons program, and identifies North Korea's ultimate goals. Check it out in the Spring/Summer 2012 edition!  

To read the full article click on the link to purchase this issue or subscribe:

The Journal of International Security Affairs is the flagship publication of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA), a non-profit, non-partisan educational organization based in Washington, D.C., dedicated to explaining the need for a prudent national security policy for the United States, addressing the security requirements of both the United States and the State of Israel, and strengthening the strategic cooperation relationship between these two great democracies. 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Boeing Video Featuring Air Force Cycling Classic

AFA's Wounded Airman Program was the beneficiary of the 2012 Air Force Cycling Classic. More than 2,000 bikers of all skill levels participated in the Crystal City races held on Sunday, June 10, ready to ride for a worthy cause.

Boeing was the presenting sponsor of this event. Check out the video to learn more about the event and AFA's Wounded Airman Program!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Note From AFA President -- Law of the Sea Treaty

You might find it odd that your AFA President is sending you a couple of pieces on the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST).  However, this is what national security is all about.  We depend on sea commerce for our commercial well-being.  Close to 85% of all our trade (by weight) goes by sea.  [And … you should all know that almost 100% of our high value commerce goes by air and increasingly by cyberspace through space.]
The Administration has submitted LOST to the Senate for ratification.  I have seen many, many articles supporting ratification and none urging the Senate to not ratify it.  This surprised me … since President Reagan refused to sign the Treaty and convinced Prime Minister Thatcher to not support it.
Then last week, the Wall Street Journal carried an op-ed by former Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld which argued against ratification. 
In this note, I offer both sides of the issue. 
And here is the Wall Street Journal piece:'t_Own_The_Seas.pdf.
For your consideration.
PS – it’s not “lost” on me of the irony of the abbreviation of the treaty.
Michael M. Dunn
Air Force Association

"The only thing more expensive than a first-rate Air Force is … a second-rate Air Force."  --  Senate staff member

Monday, June 18, 2012

Note From AFA President -- Defense Budget -- the True Picture

When the Administration rolled out its FY13 budget request, it showed a slide which pointed to the draw-downs after each of our latest wars.  The slide said we drew down after Korea -42%; after Vietnam -30%; after the Cold War -33%, and after Iraq and Afghanistan (only) -21%.
This picture was presented to show that our projected draw-down “was not so bad.”
The only problem was … there were a lot of factors missing … such as the impact of sequestration.  I have been searching for a piece that … well … presents the numbers in a different way.  And … I found it.  It was written by Peter Huessy, Senior Defense Consultant to AFA.  What Peter did was look at the numbers in a different way.  Instead of looking at them 4 years after Korea; 6 years after Vietnam; 12 years after the Cold War; and 7 years after Iraq/Afghanistan, he looked at them at a constant interval afterwards … plus a "peak to trough" comparison.  And he put the numbers into context of other things going on in the world … such as the formation of the All-Volunteer Force.
The piece is full of numbers … and I tried to simplify it … but as I read it for the 3rd and 4th time, anything I took out just weakened Mr. Huessy’s point.  And … he does have a chart which summarizes all the numbers.
Take a look at the piece ... you can find it at… and as always … give me your views.  If you think this note is worthwhile, consider forwarding it to your friends, the press, or anyone else who might be interested.
For your consideration.

Michael M. Dunn
Air Force Association
"The only thing more expensive than a first-rate Air Force is … a second-rate Air Force."  --  Senate staff member

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Happy 237th Birthday, Army!

When the American Revolution broke out, the rebellious colonies did not possess an army in the modern sense. They created an amateur force with no unified chain of command and were led, equipped, armed, paid for, and supported by the colonies from which they were raised. But by spring of 1775, this “army” was about to confront British troops near Boston and found that they needed to re-organize their forces quickly if they were to stand a chance against Britain’s seasoned professionals. 

A need was recognized. On June 14, Congress resolved to form a committee “to bring in a draft of rules and regulations for the government of the Army,” and voted $2,000,000 to support the forces around Boston, and those at New York City. 

Two hundred and thirty-seven years ago, the Continental Army was established, beginning a rich heritage of successfully defending this great country and her citizens. Today, we celebrate the continued honor, loyalty and bravery of our Soldiers. From Saratoga to Bastogne and Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army has been committed to defending our Nation and its core values and beliefs.  

Happy 237th Birthday to the U.S. Army! 

But as today is not just the Army’s Birthday, but also Flag Day, we ask you all to take a moment to celebrate the service and sacrifices of men and women who have worn the nation's uniform – rather Army, Air Force, Navy or Marine Corps – and valiantly worked to defend this great country to keep Old Glory standing tall.

Note From AFA President -- Spaatz Foreign Affairs 1946

One of our staff members (thanks, Doug) came across an article in Foreign Affairs from 1946.  [You might recall that the Air Force Association was created in 1946 – one year before the “birth” of the Air Force.]
The article was written by Gen Carl Spaatz and was entitled:  “Strategic Air Power – Fulfillment of a Concept.”  The piece is a testimony to Airpower.  A few quotes from it to interest you:
“Fortunately for us, neither Hitler nor the German High Command understood the strategic concept of air power or the primary objective of a strategic air offensive.  The Germans had air supremacy on the continent.  They also had air superiority in numbers over Britain; but they were unable to establish control of the air, and this was essential to carry out sustained operations.”
Comment:  Saddam Hussein, too, did not understand this … as well as some present and past US political leaders.
“Strategic bombing is thus the first war instrument of history capable of stopping the heart mechanism of a great industrialized enemy.  It paralyzes his military power at the core.  It has a strategy and tactic of mobility and flexibility which are peculiar to its own medium, the third dimension.  And it has a capacity, likewise peculiar, to carry a tremendous striking force, with unprecedented swiftness, over the traditional line of war (along which the surface forces are locked in battle on land and sea) in order to destroy war industries and arsenals and cities, fuel plants and supplies, transport and communications – in fact, the heart and the arteries of war economy – so that the enemy’s will to resist is broken through nullification of his means.”
“The first and absolute requirement of strategic air power in this war was control of the air in order to carry out sustained operations without prohibitive losses.”
“Another war, however distant in the future, would probably be decided by some form of air power before the surface forces were able to make contact with the enemy in major battles.  That is the supreme military lesson of our period in history.”  
The piece is long – 13 pages on my computer.  And there are a few spots where the ink has faded … probably from too much copying. 
As always, tell me what you think.
For your consideration.

Michael M. Dunn
Air Force Association

"The only thing more expensive than a first-rate Air Force is … a second-rate Air Force."  --  Senate staff member

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Note From AFA President -- Nigeria, AFCC, CSAF, SA, Flag Day

I was attending an event with a former Chief of Safety of the Air Force – and he remarked that Nigeria had implemented a relatively new policy.  No aircraft could come into their country if it were older than 22 years old.  Seems Nigeria believes aircraft older than that are “dangerous.”  As most of you know … that is less than the average age of the Air Force fleet.
AFA’s Wounded Airman Program was the beneficiary for the 2012 Air Force Cycling Classic, receiving a check for $25,000 on Sunday during its awards program. It’s a tremendous contribution to the initiative, by far our largest donation to date. Our wounded Airmen have made sacrifices that few Americans have had to make, and this initiative is a small way for the AFA to show gratitude to the brave men and women and their families who devote their lives defending this nation.  Thank you for all who supported the event and who donated on behalf of those who need our help.  And … a special thank you to the presenting sponsor of the Cycling Classic – The Boeing Corporation.
Third, yesterday we hosted Air Force Chief of Staff Gen Schwartz at our June session of the AFA Air Force Breakfast Series. It was well attended, and possibly one of the last AFA speaking engagements Gen Schwartz will make as Chief of Staff. But as he spoke to the audience of the importance of readiness, modernization and force structure in regards to the success of our Air Force, he reminded us that “while our force is decidedly resilient, it’s certainly not unbreakable.” The transcript can be found here:
Fourth, the General Billy Mitchell Institute recently hosted a talk and book signing by author Tom Lippman as part of our Mitchell Hour speaking series. Lippman is a former Middle East bureau chief for the Washington Post and author of the book, Saudi Arabia on the Edge. The book is a fascinating look at Saudi Arabia as it enters the 21st century and deals with it restless neighbors. A few takeaways from his talk is that Saudi Arabia uses about 2.5 million barrels of oil per day to generate electricity and to make water.  It is unlikely to pursue a nuclear weapon even if Iran reveals to the world that it has one of its own, since they are part of the Nonproliferation Treaty.  Further, the Arab Spring did not take root because the Saudi people recognize the Royal family as the rulers of the country.  I have not read his book, but bought one – as his talk was intriguing. 
Finally, for those in the DC area, we invite you to join us at the Air Force Memorial for our annual Flag Day ceremony, which will be at NOON on June 14th. This ceremony, which is open to the public, provides an opportunity for all Americans to pause and pay respect to our Nation's great symbol, Old Glory!  Come out and show your patriotism on this special day.
For your consideration,

Michael M. Dunn
Air Force Association

Monday, June 11, 2012

AFA’s Wounded Airman Program Gets Support from Air Force Cycling Classic

This weekend hosted the Air Force Cycling Classic, June 9-10, which saw more than 1,700 cyclists of every skill ride through Arlington, VA, to support a cause. And this year's designated principal beneficiary was AFA's Wounded Airman Program! At a ceremony held Sunday, June 10, 2012, AFA received a check for $25,000, raised through pledges made by those participating as part of Team Sabre, Airmen Helping Airmen, to help support this newest initiative. 

This year also had over 55 individual and corporate fundraisers.
“The Air Force Association is very pleased to have been selected as the principal beneficiary of the 2012 Air Force Cycling Classic,” said Mike Dunn, AFA President and CEO. “The nation’s airmen have been dedicated to the war on terrorism, humanitarian assistance around the world and providing national security for us all. We owe it to the men and women of the Air Force to take care of them when they return home in need of care, and this program helps fulfill that duty.”
AFA's President and CEO Mike Dunn accepts the $25,000 check
on behalf of the Wounded Airman Program during an
awards ceremony, June 10, 2012, at the Air Force Memorial.
Earlier this year AFA and its chapters established this program, through the Air Force Recovery Care Coordinators, to help care for wounded Airmen as they make their way from the front line to their home. The Wounded Airman Program helps ease their discomfort by offering a variety of both required and congenial items, ranging from immediate small sundries, gift cards, casual clothing, and entertainment to connection with larger support agencies for longer term support. The program also helps to provide support for family members who come to assist in the recovery and rehabilitation of their loved one.

Arlington Sports, the organization who annually organizes the Air Force Cycling Classic, is dedicated to the development and promotion of amateur and professional cycling and is proud to use their events as a means to help various causes. Proceeds from each of their fundraising events go to designated beneficiaries.

As for the Wounded Airman Program, all donations to date go 100% to the initiative. For more information, click here.

Air Force Chief of Staff at Air Force Breakfast Session

Gen Schwartz, Key Bridge Marriott,
Arlington, VA
AFA started the week off bright and early with an Air Force Breakfast Session, with guest speaker Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz. In his morning address, he spoke of the three important pillars to mitigating the possibilities of a hollow force: readiness, modernization and force structure.

"While our force is decidedly resilient, it's certainly not unbreakable," he added while discussing balance and the future of the Total Force.

He maintained that though we will find the Air Force reduced in the years to come, it still will be able to provide full spectrum airpower for America. He also spoke of the importance of a strong relationship between Active Duty and the Reserves. "It will take teamwork to maintain certain advantages. I'm confident we can do this," he said.

The transcript of this session can be found here:

Mark your calendars for the next AF Breakfast Session: July 17, Dr. Mark Maybury, Chief Scientist of the Air Force, at the Crystal City Marriott, 1999 Jefferson Davis Highway, Arlington, VA. (Hotel entrance: 20th & S. Bell St.)

June 2012 Scholarship Deadlines!

It’s that time of the year again! AFA offers several opportunities for scholarships and grants for the upcoming school year, and here are a few with approaching deadlines (JUNE 30)!

Lt Col Romeo and Josephine Bass Ferretti Scholarship
This scholarship is made possible by a bequest from the estate of Lt Col Romeo and Josephine Bass Ferretti and was established for minor dependents of active-duty enlisted Air Force, Guard, and Reserve. It is for students pursuing an undergraduate degree in STEM (science, technology, engineering, or math). The scholarship will be awarded to a student who has graduated from high school in 2012 and who is entering their first year at an accredited institution of high learning. Scholarships will be awarded for the 2012-2013 school year in the amount of $2,500. Recipients will be selected by committee based upon high academic achievement, good character and financial need.

For more information:

Captain Jodi Callahan Scholarship
This scholarship is in memory of Captain Jodi Callahan who was an AFA Under-Forty National Director and a Trustee of the former Aerospace Education Foundation. The Capt. Jodi Callahan Memorial Scholarship provides a $1,000 scholarship to an active duty Air Force, full time Air National Guard or full time Air Force Reserve (officer or enlisted) pursuing a Master’s degree in a non-technical field of study.

For more information:

Full Scholarship to Grantham University
Through AFA's affiliation with Grantham University, AFA is pleased to provide an online degree scholarship to an Active Duty Dependent, an AFA Member, or a dependent of an AFA Member. For more information:

Civil Air Patrol Unit Grants
AFA has long supported the Civil Air Patrol, the official Auxiliary of the United States Air Force.  The missions of both organizations include the need to educate the general public about the importance of aerospace power, both now and in the future.  STEM education initiatives are paramount in fulfilling this mission, and both the AFA and CAP provide a multitude of K-12 STEM opportunities for young people. 

For more information: