Battlefield Airmen Considered a Weapon System

Ravage

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http://www.dvidshub.net/?script=news/news_show.php&id=40568

TUCSON, Ariz. – The capabilities of battlefield Airmen are considered just as lethal as any advanced weapons system. For that reason, tactical air control party personnel, pararescuemen, security forces personnel and special operations weathermen have been included in the annual Weapons and Tactics Conference held here this week.

Nearly 1,200 Air Force warfighters met in 30 working groups on Air Force weapons systems to decide on what's needed to succeed in future battles and missions. WEPTAC took place at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base and the Air Guard and Air Force Reserve Command Test Center, Oct. 19 – 23.

In the working groups that involved battlefield Airmen, there were two common questions: how to apply their combat experience to best recruit, train and equip themselves for the next battle, and how to present that to the leadership to get what they need.

"We provide the same deliverables that the other working groups provide and give the same briefings to the generals," said Capt. Jim Robinson, chairman for WEPTAC's security forces working group and commander of the 183rd Security Forces Squadron in Springfield, Ill.

Robinson said that several years ago, the director of security forces advocated for security forces representation at WEPTAC. He said that inclusion has filled a need for equipment and funding, and a representative is now on the Air Guard's staff to represent them with decision-makers.

"He tries to get funding for us, the TACPs, PJs and others ... he goes behind closed doors with other weapon system reps to come to an agreement on who's going to get what, if anything."

But understanding how battlefield Airmen use their equipment – traditionally, different then how pilots use aircraft – is a challenge, said Senior Master Sgt. Nick Lowe, an Air Guard combat controller who manages joint tactical air control tests at the AATC.

"Sometimes it can be challenging to figure out how we fit in," he said.

Lowe should know. He develops new technology for battlefield-Airmen the same way a test pilot develops new aircraft systems and tactics.

He said the field is acknowledging that more, along with how to go about leveraging a battlefield-Airman's capability with technology.

"WEPTAC for them [battlefield Airmen] is really useful, because they get visibility as a weapon system with the upper-tier leadership," Lowe said. "This is the forum they use to air those problems and identify what they need to accomplish their combat missions."

Senior Master Sgt. John Babcock, chairman for WEPTAC's TACP and air special operations center working group, said the rapid growth of his Air Guard career field has brought recognition as well as challenges in recruiting, training and equipping. He said recruiters are concentrating on TACPs this year and bottlenecks at the schoolhouse are being addressed at WEPTAC.

Babcock said being recognized as a weapon system at WEPTAC and by leadership helps, and it's a title held highly among the TACPs.

"We believe it gets us better visibility," he said. "A lot of problems will not necessarily be rectified, but gets better advocacy because we are recognized as a weapon system."

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Air Guard battlefield Airmen try out new equipment at the Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command Test Center, Ariz., in May 2009. Battlefield Airmen held several weapon system working groups, Oct. 19 - 23, as part of the annual Air Guard and Air Force Reserve Weapons and Tactics Conference.
 

Teufel

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http://www.dvidshub.net/?script=news/news_show.php&id=40568

TUCSON, Ariz. – The capabilities of battlefield Airmen are considered just as lethal as any advanced weapons system. For that reason, tactical air control party personnel, pararescuemen, security forces personnel and special operations weathermen have been included in the annual Weapons and Tactics Conference held here this week.

What does this mean??? How is a person (other than Chuck Norris) be considered an advanced weapons system? Are they going to change the 1st SOF truth to "Humans are more important than hardware unless of course you consider humans hardware." Do we really need to define battlefield airmen as weapons in order for higher HQ to pay attention to them and their requirements?
 

DA SWO

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It also standardizes equipment and training. People are part of a weapon system, airplane is pretty useless with out a pilot, or operator somewhere in the chain.

This took a lot of diverse efforts and combined them into a more coherent package.

Lot of non-AF folks don't understand what we bring to the battlefield and why we bring it.
 

Teufel

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It also standardizes equipment and training. People are part of a weapon system, airplane is pretty useless with out a pilot, or operator somewhere in the chain.

This took a lot of diverse efforts and combined them into a more coherent package.

Lot of non-AF folks don't understand what we bring to the battlefield and why we bring it.

This is the problem I have experienced with big Air Force. People are not part of a weapon system, weapon systems are an extension of people. Most organizations get this. Sometimes it seems that the Air Force does not.
 

amlove21

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Wow, unreal here. EVERYONE LINE UP, PRESENT LEFT SHOULDER FOR 1G ERTAPENEM RIGHT NOW! Now, no more shenanigans. You all know those AF girls are just a breeding ground for silly shit.

Army- stop sniping the girls on runs! Marines- i dont even know how you attract them, but stop it. Sheesh.
 

Nasty

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This is a prime example of why you don't put engineers in charge of people: oceans of book knowledge, puddles of common sense.

You're right J; to them if it ain't an airplane, it ain't a weapon system. Back in the early '80's I earned a CRM because I was qualifed on the C-9A Nightingale (Aeromedical Evacuation aircraft with a huge Red Cross on the tail) weapon system(?). These guys just don't think about AF boots on the ground outside of the wire!
 
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