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: http://www.af.mil/shared/media/document/AFD-120611-028.pdf
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

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