Air Force Secretary: The branch is focused on confronting China, hence aging platforms must be retired.
In his first public speech, Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall stated that the branch is focused on battling China as well as maintaining unity among its members, and that the service has to retire obsolete aircraft and programs in order to focus on those that work.
Kendall delivered the remarks at the Air Force Association Air Space and Cyber Conference in National Harbor, Md., as a “blueprint” for the Air and Space forces, Congress, and others to follow in order to address national security concerns, according to a press statement from the US Air Force.
Kendall stated “time is short” to address these security concerns during his speech, which was delivered in front of thousands of active-duty troops, congressional staffers, and others in the military sector.
“While America is the world’s greatest military force, we are being militarily challenged more effectively than at any – any – other point in our history,” he said.
In his remarks, Kendall made it clear that China was the most serious of those problems.
“So, now that I have this job, what are my plans?” he inquired rhetorically. “Sen. Jon Tester asked me what my priorities were over a brunch on Capitol Hill shortly after I was sworn in. “I have three,” I replied, “China, China, and China.”
Kendall referenced China 27 times in his speech, compared to a single mention of Russia and three mentions of Afghanistan, according to the Air Force.
The West Point graduate with over 50 years of Army service and former top Defense Department official in the Obama administration, who was selected for the role in April and sworn in a few months ago, also stressed the importance of unity.
Kendall’s organizing principle is simple: “One squad, one fight,” he stated.
He went on to say that adhering to a “one team” approach was critical, pointing out that failure to do so has had disastrous results in the past.
“There is a lesson from the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan that we as Americans, Airmen, and Guardians should not overlook,” Kendall added.
While historians and policy experts will spend years trying to figure out why the Afghan government fell so swiftly after 20 years of US and ally backing and training, the Air Force chief stated that Article Summary from Nokia News