Another important role the Reserves will play is within the cyber mission of the Air Force. Since some Reservists work in the private sector, they are more familiar with the constantly evolving nature of technology and can bring that experience to the Air Force.
Air Force Reserve Modernization By Nick Morgan, RADM James Cary Washington Scholars Fellow T he Air Force faces challenges tion is not just an upgrade of equipment the Reservist is on active duty. One op- as it attempts to modernize and infrastructure, but also a modern- tion Maj Gen Thompson suggested is while maintaining a focus on ization of thought. an improvement in Tricare, which he its mission to provide the U.S. military Since Operation Desert Shield in termed one of the most successful pro- asymmetric advantages in airpower and 1990, the Air Force has increasingly grams the Department of Defense has cyber warfare. Participants in a June 22 operationalized the Air Force Reserve, ever implemented. Another important Defense Education Forum discussed which had traditionally been kept as a change will be a sustainable operation the impact that current modernization strategic reserve, Maj Gen Thompson tempo for the Reserves in order to en- would have on the Air Force Reserve, said. Nevertheless, a balance between courage volunteerism within the force specifically the challenges for Reserve the operational requirements and the and reduce the threat to the strategic members and their families, equip- mission of retaining the strategic Re- reserve. A third priority for the Reserve ment upgrades, and the evolution of the serve must be maintained, he said. The is integrating into the Regular Air Force role the Reserves play within Air Force metric to judge that balance is volun- in order to train more highly rated and strategy. teerism within the Reserve. Ensuring competent forces ready to serve on ac- ROA invited speakers from the Air that the Air Force Reserve can achieve tive duty. Force Reserve community and indus- its operational requirements through The final priority for the Reserves try to comment on modernization from steady volunteerism is the number-one is a modernization of infrastructure different aspects. goal for the Reserve. and facilities. Maj Gen Thompson said The program’s keynote speaker, Maj The next priority for the Reserve is military facilities must be recapitalized Gen Howard N. Thompson, mobili- maintaining the Reserve triad, which every 60 years to remain modern, but zation assistant to the chief of the Air consists of the Reservist, the Reserv- the rate is now approximately 213 years. Force Reserve, discussed the priorities ist’s family, and the Reservist’s employer. It would require $97 million just this the Air Force has for the Air Force Re- The Reserve needs to modernize the year to keep
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