Building the Air Force We Need

Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson issued a warning at AFA?s Air, Space & Cyber Conference last September: ?We must see the world as it is. That is why the National Defense Strategy explicitly recognizes that we have returned to an era of great power competition. We must prepare.?

World events back up this assertion in no uncertain terms. With China aggressively expanding its territorial zone of control in the Pacific Ocean in excess of international norms, and Russia pursuing overt acts of hostility in places like Ukraine and Syria, the global threat environment is growing to levels unseen since the Cold War. North Korea?s possession of nuclear weapons and Iran?s continued assertiveness in the Middle East are also generating strategic-level threats from regional actors.


Goldfein’s Multi-Domain Vision

Two years after Chief of Staff Gen. David L. Goldfein named it as one of his top three focus areas at AFA?s 2016 Air, Space & Cyber Conference, the service has now matured its thinking on multi-domain operations, or MDO. Goldfein said in an August interview with Air Force Magazine that he is confident USAF is heading in the right direction when it comes to communicating and fighting across air, sea, land, space, and cyberspace.

Goldfein said when he first took the helm as USAF?s top uniformed officer he asked himself where the service ?needed to be in 2030.?

The Air Force, he determined, no longer has the luxury of being able to take its time developing new capabilities. Peer adversaries have studied US military operations, are quickly improving their capabilities, and ?contest our dominance in all domains.? USAF must move fast to ensure it stays ahead of these adversaries, and ?if deterrence fails, we must be ready to win in a peer-to-peer conflict,? he added.