Monday, January 26, 2009

New to the Pentagon

I had the opportunity to speak today with Airmen who are new to the Pentagon. They all go through a course called HAF (Headquarters Air Force) Orientation. Air Force Public Affairs is a standard on the schedule to brief these folks. For many it's their first tour and first time in the Pentagon.

I like to tell them that this is my third tour at the Pentagon since 2000 and that it's really a great place to work. The biggest challenge really--because of the insane traffic-- is getting to work in the morning and getting home at night.
I told them today that they're here at a very important juncture in the history of the Air Force and our country. With a Presidential Administration change you just never know what's going to happen next as far as the priorities of the new President are concerned. I shared with them that I'm encouraged by President Obama's new web site--especially that it's interactive--but that on today's site the Administration staunchly supported air power with the following comment: "We must preserve our unparalleled air power capabilities to deter and defeat any conventional competitors, swiftly respond to crises across the globe, and support our ground forces."

The fact sheet on the President's site also states support for the C-17 cargo plane, unmanned aerial vehicles and for a new aerial refueling tanker. That's all good news for those of us who have been fighting the battles in the media about Air Force modernization.

I also told these officers and senior enlisted Airmen that they're here at the Pentagon because they are experts in their career fields. Truly, the Air Force needs their expertise now more than ever as we continue to ensure America's Air Force stays the most powerful air force on the planet.
The next couple of years should be interesting around here. I'm looking forward to sharing my thoughts with you in future posts. I also look forward to your comments.

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