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    Agile Defense: Osan’s Intensive Training to Forge Multi-Capable Airmen

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    Osan Air Base, South Korea, is strengthening its defense capabilities through an innovative Combat Readiness Course (CRC), ensuring Airmen are well-equipped and prepared to face any threat.

    This initiative aligns with the U.S. Air Force’s forward-thinking Agile Combat Employment (ACE) strategy, focusing on versatility and adaptability in a rapidly evolving military landscape.

    FILE PHOTO — An F-22 Raptor in full afterburner during flight testing at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. The Raptor is the replacement for the F-15 Eagle. It is the most advanced fighter aircraft in the world, combining a revolutionary leap in technology and capability with reduced support requirements and maintenance costs. The F-22’s integrated avionics gives it first-look, first-shot, first-kill capability that guarantees U.S. air dominance for decades. (U.S. Air Force photo)

    The 51st Security Forces Squadron at Osan has developed the CRC, a 10-day comprehensive training regimen, to instill Airmen with advanced combat skills and solidify the base’s readiness posture. “The Combat Readiness Course is designed to keep our Airmen lethal and prepared to face any threat they may encounter,” stated Chief Master Sgt. James Tavenner, underscoring the significance of the program in bolstering base defense.

    KC-135R Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor

    The F-22 Raptor, developed at Aeronautical Systems Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the replacement for the F-15 Eagle air-superiority fighter and will become operational early in the next century. It combines stealth design with the supersonic, highly maneuverable, dual-engine, long-range requirements of an air-to-air fighter, and it also will have an inherit air-to-ground capability, if needed. The F-22’s integrated avionics gives it first-look, first-shot, first-kill capability that will guarantee U.S. air dominance for the next three decades. The KC-135 Stratotanker’s principal mission is air refueling. This asset greatly enhances the U. S. Air Force’s capability to accomplish its mission of Global Engagement. It also provides aerial refueling support to U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and allied aircraft. Four turbofans, mounted under 35-degree swept wings, power the KC-135 to takeoffs at gross weights up to 322,500 pounds (146,285 kilograms). Nearly all internal fuel can be pumped through the tanker’s flying boom, the KC-135’s primary fuel transfer method. A special shuttlecock-shaped drogue, attached to and trailed behind the flying boom, may be used to refuel aircraft fitted with probes. An operator stationed in the rear of the plane controls the boom. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kevin Robertson)

    This theater-specific training draws participants from diverse career fields across the installation, imparting crucial skills such as weapon safety, tactical casualty care, and both mounted and dismounted operations. The course culminates in a 5-mile graduation ruck march, showcasing the physical endurance and combat preparedness honed through rigorous exercises.

    Reflecting on the transformative experience, Senior Airman Ethan McGregor-Offen, a volunteer from the 51st Logistic Readiness Squadron, remarked, “The course prepared me to overcome any obstacle.” His sentiment echoes the broader goal of the CRC: to develop multi-capable Airmen who are mission-ready and capable of tackling challenges head-on.

    A B-2 Spirit soars after a refueling mission over the Pacific Ocean on Tuesday, May 30, 2006. The B-2, from the 509th Bomb Wing at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo., is part of a continuous bomber presence in the Asia-Pacific region. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Bennie J. Davis III)

    Furthermore, the 51st Fighter Wing’s dedication to the ACE concept is exemplified through recent deployments to Gwangju Air Base, where Airmen practiced operating in unfamiliar settings and adapting to roles outside their usual specialties.

    An F-15 Eagle aircrew from Kadena Air Base, Japan, returns to the “fight” after receiving fuel from a KC-135 Stratotanker from Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash., during Red Flag-Alaska April 27. Red Flag-Alaska is a field training exercise that provides joint offensive counter-air, interdiction, close air support, and large force employment training in a simulated combat environment. (U.S. Air Force photo/Capt. Shannon Collins)

    Maj. Joseph Basala, a 36th Fighter Squadron pilot, highlighted the strategy’s essence, “The more Airmen that we train to be multi-capable, the less people we have to take with us when we deploy.”

    An Israel Aircraft Industries (IAF) ‘Kfir C2’ at the Muzeyon Heyl ha-Avir (Israeli Air Force Museum), Hatzerim Air Base, Israel, in 2006.” by aeroman3 is licensed under CC CC0 1.0

    The ACE initiative, as described by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr., seeks to make the U.S. Pacific Air Forces “light, lean, and agile.” This approach minimizes reliance on main operation bases and enhances the capacity to project air power from smaller, dispersed locations, crucial in contested and degraded environments.

    Australian Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II – Luke Air Force Base, AZ, UNITED STATES 06.27.2018” by aeroman3 is licensed under CC PDM 1.0

    The 51st FW’s commitment to readiness and adaptability, as well as plans to integrate Republic of Korea Air Force partners into the CRC, demonstrates a proactive stance in defense and a robust deterrent against threats to peace on the Korean Peninsula.

    “This comprehensive combat course showcases the 51st FW’s readiness and resilience,” Tavenner emphasized, affirming the unyielding determination to protect Osan AB and its strategic objectives.

    U.S. Army Pfc. Tim Hofmann
    U.S. Army Pfc. Tim Hofmann by U.S. Department of Defense is licensed under CC-CC0 1.0

    The ACE and CRC initiatives reflect the Air Force’s evolution towards more agile and versatile forces, embodying the principles of multi-capability and readiness.

    Indian and U.S. Army troops
    Indian and U.S. Army troops by U.S. Air Force is licensed under CC-CC0 1.0

    As the training programs continue to expand and integrate, Osan Air Base stands as a testament to the U.S. military’s ability to adapt and excel in an ever-changing global security environment.

    U.S. Soldiers of 2nd Platoon, B Troop, 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, receive instructions from a helicopter crew chief during Aerial Response Force Training, at Forward Operating Base Loyalty, Beladiyat, eastern Baghdad, Iraq, on Feb. 25.
    Relampago 2014, South Carolina Air National Guard and Colombian Air Force combined air cooperation engagement” by S.C. Air National Guard is licensed under CC PDM 1.0
    A U.S. Army paratrooper assigned
    A U.S. Army paratrooper assigned by U.S. Department of Defense is licensed under CC-CC0 1.0

    Relevant articles:
    Combat course at air base in South Korea aims to forge ‘multi-capable airmen’, Stars and Stripes
    Osan enhances defense with Combat Readiness Course, Osan Air Base (.mil)
    Osan trains multi-capable Airmen under ACE, Osan Air Base (.mil)
    Airmen Learn Forklifts, Firearms, And More for Near, Air & Space Forces Magazine

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