HomeNewsArticle Display

Crushing ISIS: Air power operations in a complex battle space

Crushing ISIS

Lt. Gen. Jeffrey L. Harrigian, U.S. Air Forces Central Command commander, speaks about the challenges of air power operations in a complex battle space as part of the Air, Space and Cyber Conference in National Harbor, Md., Sept 18, 2017. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne A. Clark)

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (AFNS) -- Lt. Gen. Jeffrey L. Harrigian, commander of U.S. Air Forces Central Command, discussed the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria during the 2017 Air Force Association Air, Space and Cyber Conference, Sept. 18, 2017.

Since assuming command in July 2016, Harrigian has directed operations to defeat ISIS, to include the liberation of Mosul and the ongoing fight to liberate Raqqa and the remaining ISIS held territory within Iraq and Syria.

“Crushing ISIS,” he said. “Let there be no doubt in anybody’s mind that’s what we are doing and that’s what this is about.”

According to Harrigian, part of the AFCENT mission is distributing, with precision, 150 to 175 weapons a day with support from a targeting teams across the U.S.

“We got to have action that moves us forward, solves our problems and ultimately, at the end of the day, it’s about winning,” said Harrigian. “That’s what our Airmen provide for us.”

He detailed the operational complexities of the environment that coalition forces deal with on the ground every day.

Harrigian emphasized a leader’s role in every mission is to provide guidance and intent, then Airmen execute the mission on the tactical side.

“It gets back to empowering our team. When I talk about empowering, there’s a trust factor,” he said. “You’re going to make a decision and I’ll back you up.”

For the last 20 years Airmen resorted to using a seven foot wide whiteboard to monitor airspace. As technology progressed, Airmen on the ground developed the Tanker Planning Tool.

“[This tool] allowed them to focus on good quality mission planning,” Lt. Col Enrique Oti, Defense Innovation Unit Experimental director said. “It allowed for changes in the plan…they could run through multiple different options and try different scenarios.”

Harrigian imparted how his team is providing air superiority, and failure to achieve that mission endangers the joint force while increasing the cost of achieving victory against ISIS .

“At the end of the day, this is all about providing security and stability for those that have to live in this part of the world,” Harrigian said. “I’m privileged to be a part of this team. It’s been an experience, personally for me unlike anything I’ve ever had a chance to be a part of, and I’m just a small part of a great team that’s winning.”


Facebook Twitter
Tune in to @AFSpace’s latest episode of Generation Space GPS III (Part 3) featuring our partners at @LockheedMartinhttps://t.co/MHgxgQ64cV
RT @thejointstaff: #GenSelva was greeted with a water salute upon landing @Andrews_JBA for the final flight ✈️ of his 39-year career July 2…
RT @DeptofDefense: This community center may not be open yet, but kids from Amelia’s Ward in Guyana 🇬🇾 got a chance to enjoy it early durin…
“On a daily basis we are involved with creativity, adventure & challenge,” @4CTCS Staff Sgt. Corban Lundborg.… https://t.co/GpzjDqoQup
RT @AirmanMagazine: Getting help to the right location for land rescues in the aftermath of a major hurricane falls to the @usairforce Resc…
#B2 Spirit, a combination of #stealth & advanced avionics. #ThisWeekinHistory https://t.co/Bd7OrB3bbb
RT @AF_WSOC: 👀 who popped up with the big dogs on TopDrawerSoccer’s Top 40 Ranked Recruiting Classes for 2019! Excited to have these fresh…
For saving two fellow wingmen while deployed in Afghanistan, Tech. Sgt. Nick Torres received two bronze star medals… https://t.co/83bcAvqCxG
@AF_Falcons @NCAA @AF_trackfield @MW_OlySports Congratulations!!! Fit to fight!!
RT @DefenceHQ: Today the various NATO aircraft flypast at #RIAT19 to mark the 70th anniversary of NATO! Since its creation, NATO has been…
The @DeptofDefense has partnered with the @DeptVetAffairs to implement the first Women's Health Transition Training… https://t.co/JUTFicsXDw
⚡️ “Apollo 11 50th anniversary” https://t.co/GSeJYz6wPJ
The 413th Flight Test Sq. @TeamEglin successfully conducted the 1st #USAF piloted flight of the #HH60W Combat Rescu… https://t.co/wTyTtcmZjv
Jetting into the weekend like... #F16 https://t.co/wEWD7vr476
.@AstroHague showing his #USAF pride during the anniversary week of the #Apollo50 landing. @ISS_Researchhttps://t.co/WdgCFDmz6f
'Only two of us were not shot or dying': #USAF #Airman receives Silver Star for heroism in Afghanistan heroism… https://t.co/IdmKq8gtDx
RT @AFResearchLab: Dr. Lisa Rueschhoff was one of 82 engineers chosen to attend @theNAEng 2019 U.S. Frontiers of Engineering Symposium! Sh…
RT @ActingSecAF: .@GenDaveGoldfein is bolstering partners & #allies across Europe, discussing how we can be #StrongerTogether in air, #spac