SERE training to be required for all Airmen



SERE training to be required for all Airmen

8/10/2007 - WASHINGTON (AFPN) -- Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. T. Michael Moseley met Aug. 10 at the Pentagon with several Air Force leaders to discuss the road ahead for survival, evasion, resistance and escape training.

Air Force leaders plan to broaden the focus of SERE training for all Airmen due to the threat of isolation and capture for Airmen supporting the war on terrorism.

"As we've seen recently, the capture of military personnel has the potential of exploding into a larger strategic event with global impacts," General Moseley said. "Today's battlefields are non-linear and non-contiguous; their shape and venue change constantly. I worry we've not prepared our Airmen for the world we're operating in."

In today's ever-changing world, Airmen increasingly find themselves in a non-traditional environment outside the wire. SERE training teaches Airmen principles, techniques and skills to survive in any environment, avoid capture, resist and escape if captured.

SERE training is currently conducted on three levels. All Airmen receive entry-level, or A-level, training. B-level is provided to those with a moderate risk of capture and C-level is reserved for those with a high risk of capture. B- and C-level training is provided primarily to aircrew members, those traditionally in higher risk duties.

Col. Bill Andrews, a guest speaker at the summit, was an F-16 Fighting Falcon pilot flying his 35th mission in the final stages of Operation Desert Storm when he was shot down, captured and spent time as a POW.

"An Airman captured faces grave moral and physical challenges," Colonel Andrews said. "My training gave me a gut understanding that I was still at war and not in a time-out. My SERE training at the Air Force Academy, 14 years earlier, was clear as a bell, giving me the confidence to not break in the face of the enemy."

In addition to aircrews, advanced SERE training currently is provided to battlefield Airmen, those with the responsibility for combat control, pararescue, tactical air control and combat weather.

"This is a great day. For the first time in history, we're talking about preparing all Airmen in the total force to deal with the increasing threat of isolation and capture," said Chief Master Sergeant John Myers, SERE career field manager.

"With the issues we've addressed at this summit, we've taken a great step forward in facing this ultimate challenge that confronts our Airmen who fall into enemy hands," Colonel Andrews added.

General Moseley's new initiative will be to incorporate SERE training throughout the Air Force.

"We need to inject these skills across the entire force," General Moseley said. "Whether deployed for combat operations, stationed overseas or even in the continental United States, there are persistent threats to all Airmen. We must ensure every Airman is properly trained to deal with these threats. From the moment Airmen report for initial training until they separate or retire, we must train them to ensure they return with honor."

What do they mean when they say "all airmen"? Do they mean all aircrews? Or everybody in the entire Air Force. No offense, but I can think of a lot of other servicemembers that need advanced SERE training before the B-2 ground crewman at Whiteman or the finance clerk at Bolling need it. I can see where they'd do it before you deploy to a combat area, but how much is it going to end up costing and couldn't we use that money for something more important?

Also, what will the new "I completed SERE training" badge look like? :D
Also, what will the new "I completed SERE training" badge look like? :D

A spinning propeller to attach to the top of your Kevlar, that way the Enemy will know to release you if captured.
yeah I have no idea , maybe an AF dude can weigh in. It wouldnt make sense for everyone, then again, maybe it's good. Surely everyone isnt willing though...
Oh...well then stand-by for the slap session. Lo siento hermano, them's tha breaks.
I can think of more than a few AF guys I have worked with that won't take this lying down.

I mean, we could barely get them to take the garbage out, and strenuous PT was definitely out of the question! :)
I can think of more than a few AF guys I have worked with that won't take this lying down.

I mean, we could barely get them to take the garbage out, and strenuous PT was definitely out of the question! :)

I realized I might have joined the wrong service when I spent a weekend at Davis-Monthan.

I can understand aircrews getting the SERE training, which I thought many of them already did.
They do, with refreshers at three year intervals conducted by SERE specialists assigned to either their wing or a nearby wing.

That would be a fun gig if you liked being outdoors. Anyone know if the AF's SERE cats are on jump status?
The basic SERE course was pretty fun i thought...however i couldn't imagine ALL the AF going through it. Not to knock my service, but there are people in here who just couldn't handle it. Just in the way you see someone fail the initial PT Test at Airborne, their unit burns the money to send them there, only for them to fail because they don't want it...same thing. Plus, if everyone knows SERE, it'll make my job even less eventful.

btw, our SERE guys are some of the most professional people i've had the pleasure of working with. They're typically spot-on and know their shit inside personnaly, i'm all for them getting rewarded by getting jump or freefall if they so want.
Went I went though SERE we had a few DOR in my class (non of them were the "volunteers" AKA Marine Combat MOS, 2 Army Rangers and one EOD), and it cost them their MOS. Low that was Level C but I cant see the entire Air Force doing that unless they drop the standards big time! first "save" was during my sere training when i was only an EMT-B. Some fucktard officer decided that he was gonna fall down and play "Spinal injury" during a 0% illum night movement. Called in the helos, cleared an LZ, had him packaged up and raised. I found out the next day that there was nothing wrong with him and he's was "probably going to be booted." I was so fuckin pissed that someone would risk other peoples lives so that he doesn't have to endure anymore discomfort.
SERE 100

Well to answer everyones question... I wish I could use my coersive pressures on all the members of the AF and give them the good version of SERE..i.e some time alone in a box.....but everyone is going to be required to do a 3 hour CBT covering all aspects of unclassed SERE stuff like Gov Detention and hostage is just to help out that poor schmuck who gets in trouble while driving in a convoy....I think it is a great alternative to just having someone read the Code of conduct during basic training and having the remember it their whole it the be all end all?....probably not but it may help someone Return with Honor
Bump - I was looking around for things I could contribute to because of JAB's "Where do you post?" thread and found this!

Interesting read! I was a Gray Hat during the first 4 years of AD.

I was not stationed at any of the Big Schools (other than the instructor course and some smaller subject specific training) but attached to the 22nd AF as a refresher course. The technical equipment and rigger portions where done at Chanute AFB in Illinois, Lowry AFB CO and I think Shepard AFB too. (Shows how long ago that was for me! Chanute and Lowry AFB are both long gone!)

We did A and B refresher training. C stuff was all done by the Big AF Schools. Fairchild being the center of it all with contingents at Eielson AFB AK, NAS Pensacola FL, and there used to be a bunch of Squadrons spread out among the active Wings. Since the late 80's most of the survival training has been decomissioned at the Operations Support/Combat Support squadrons levels.

Not sure how they do refresher training now! We did do some TDY's to geographic locations to conduct refreshers from time to time.

NOT all AIRMAN (In the general sense of the term for all AF members) recieved this training! Only those that were expected to operate in/over or near active hostile/combat zones.

Note: Please keep in mind that this has all certainly changed from back in my day!

I would love to hear from anyone who has attended any of these schools recently or is an Active AF SERE instructor to find out what it is like now. Without revealing OPSEC of course!

Anyone want to share thier schools and experince in the recent past?

I wonder how the Army SERE school differ's from the AF SERE school. Same for the Navy/Marine's. I know we had members from all the branches attend our schools. Do they still do that? Or does each branch maintain thier own?

How many SERE grad's are on SS? (Is that violating OPSEC? If so then please ignore that question!)

Also - What do conventional units like Infantry do? Is there any training and if so is unit run/specific training?

Is anything like that done at AIT?