HomeNewsArticle Display

Operation Rapid Forge concludes

U.S. Air Force Capt. Joseph Walz, 421st Fighter Squadron F-35A Lightning II pilot, prepares to taxi during Operation Rapid Forge at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, July 18, 2019. The goal of the operation is to enhance interoperability with NATO allies and partners to improve combined operational capabilities. F-35s provide unmatched lethality, survivability, and adaptability to war-fighter aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Valerie Seelye)

Capt. Joseph Walz, 421st Fighter Squadron F-35A Lightning II pilot, prepares to taxi during Operation Rapid Forge at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, July 18, 2019. The goal of the operation is to enhance interoperability with NATO allies and partners to improve combined operational capabilities. F-35s provide unmatched lethality, survivability and adaptability to war-fighter aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Valerie Seelye)

An F-35A Lighting II, assigned to the 421st Fighter Squadron, Hill Air Force Base, Utah, takes off during Operation Rapid Forge at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, July 23, 2019. Operation Rapid Forge aircraft deployed to train in coordination with NATO allies in the Baltics and Poland. The operation ensures the U.S. Air Force is engaged and ready with credible force to assure, deter and defend during a potential threat. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Branden Rae)

Operation Rapid Forge continues at Spangdahlem

An F-15E Strike Eagle, assigned to the 4th Fighter Wing, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., taxis toward the runway at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, July 18, 2019, during Operation Rapid Forge. Operation Rapid Forge aircraft deployed to bases in the territory of NATO allies in order to enhance readiness and improve interoperability. The goal of the operation is to enhance readiness in coordination with U.S. allies and partners in Europe. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Preston Cherry)

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany (AFNS) --

Operation Rapid Forge concluded July 25 at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany.

The 10-day operation helped ensure U.S. forces’ ability to fulfill the European Deterrence Initiative, a policy to assure and defend NATO allies, while promoting deterrence in an increasingly complex security environment.

Members of the 4th Fighter Wing, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina, set up a mobile command and control facility in a simulated austere environment. The 4th FW and the 421st Expeditionary Fighter Squadron, Hill AFB, Utah, used the C2 node throughout the operation for sorties as the U.S. forces practiced interoperability with NATO partners.

“Rapid Forge is assuring our NATO partners,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Donn Yates, 4th FW commander. “Rapid Forge is developing interoperability between 4th and 5th generation aircraft, F-35A (Lightning II) and F-15E (Strike Eagle) and it is also rapidly projecting airpower into the theater using amazing capabilities that we have and then being able to test and experiment with command and control, in accordance with a flexible mindset.”

The operation was a collaborative effort between European and U.S. Forces.

“European forces from NATO member nations of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland participated alongside Airmen from U.S. Air Forces in Europe, F-15E Strike Eagles from the 4th FW and F-35A Lightning II from the 421st EFS,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Maxwell Cover, 421st EFS F-35A pilot.

A key part of Operation Rapid Forge was testing the U.S. Air Force’s ability to operate in an austere environment.

“The U.S. Air Force had been looking to explore its ability to deploy a light and lean force to rapidly stand up a C2 facility anywhere in the world,” Yates said. “This ability prevents U.S. forces from being restricted to a fixed site, while demonstrating we are a credible and capable competitor with any adversary.”

Operating this way has resulted in the concept of the multifunctional Airman, an Airman who is trained to perform a variety of tasks, not just those within their specific specialty.

Cover said the 421st EFS had a team of highly trained maintenance personnel at each training location for Operation Rapid Forge. Airmen were cross-trained into all the different F-35A maintenance functional areas. Instead of having seven to nine personnel to operate all the functional areas, two personnel can do all the F-35A servicing.

The 4th FW also discovered the concept of the multifunctional Airman to be beneficial.

Yates said his base built their team towards the multifunctional Airman concept prior deploying to Operation Rapid Forge. He said for his team, the concept involved training Airmen to fuel jets, marshal aircraft, provide security and lead troops, among other skills.

This concept makes expeditionary operations like Rapid Forge possible.

“The multifunctional Airman concept is key to operating in an austere environment,” Cover said. “We want to minimize our footprint and change the calculus of where a potential adversary thinks we can operate. To do that, we are going to need to cut down the number of people we need to accomplish the mission and have more of a middleweight fighting force that is highly capable.”

The continued change in strategy and policy during Operation Rapid Forge was intended to strengthen the deterrence effect of U.S. forces.

Cover said it is important the U.S. Air Force maintains a strategy that seeks a continuing advantage to deter aggression and assure NATO allies. Operation Rapid Forge was built upon a strategy that allows the U.S. to promote deterrence of possible aggressors by operating in remote locations with a minimal footprint, while still maintaining the strength of our fighting force.

The lessons and skills learned from Operation Rapid Forge resulted in a successful operation.

“We came here to accomplish three objectives,” Yates said. “Get the team here in a very quick timeline, establish our air expeditionary wing and achieve training, and get everyone home safe. We have accomplished the first two objectives and are working on the third, so I consider Rapid Forge to be a huge success.”

Engage

Twitter
Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: Maintaining resiliency in paradise - https://t.co/IXktGzGgWc (Story by the @624RSG) #ReserveResilient https://t.co/ta8mMTP…
Twitter
RT @hack_a_sat: Tune in at 11 AM PDT to watch the LIVE closing ceremony with Dr. Will Roper and @bjgol. 🚀It's all happening at https://t.c…
Twitter
Difficult, but not impossible. @GenCQBrownJr addresses the challenges the Air Force faces going forward. https://t.co/kF4FdxN5S6
Twitter
“I want to show people the power of having faith & sticking to what you say you’re going to do.” - Staff Sgt. Gerem… https://t.co/524l6BUsyI
Twitter
What operates 24/7 ensuring the safety of aircraft & aircrews, AND provides prompt service to whoever is flying?… https://t.co/JMaYsTV5XH
Twitter
.@GenCQBrownJr explains what the Air Force can expect from his leadership: https://t.co/bxeqgZ1NSi
Twitter
RT @AirmanMagazine: Your daily @usairforce news! ✅ @Team_Tinker Airmen are using 3D printing to manufacture metal components successfully…
Twitter
5-year-old Wilder Umbarger, who suffers from X-Linked Adrenoleukodystrophy, wished he could see a real plane and me… https://t.co/nUtEk9e0u4
Twitter
.@GenCQBrownJr assumed his new role as Air Force Chief of Staff Aug. 6. https://t.co/kk8y15fOYe
Twitter
RT @AirNatlGuard: "Their exceptional service in conducting over 100,000 COVID tests set the conditions to reduce the effects of this pandem…
Twitter
Botinsol Analytics has developed a portable precision chem-bio lab for people who need to do real-time analysis in… https://t.co/XgOq8ROkSE
Twitter
#FollowFriday: The 22nd Air Force Chief of Staff @GenCQBrownJr https://t.co/UOG0JDKTVJ
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: On #PurpleHeartDay we honor and remember the members of the U.S. Armed Forces who were wounded in combat or paid the ulti…
Twitter
.@GenDaveGoldfein retired from active duty and passed on the duty of Air Force Chief of Staff to @GenCQBrownJr. https://t.co/AdlykogVjZ
Twitter
.@GenCQBrownJr's tenets of leadership: - Execute at a high standard - Be disciplined in execution - Pay attention… https://t.co/9EmCYue0OO
Twitter
RT @AirMobilityCmd: We are incredibly proud of our #TotalForce #MobilityAirmen and their support to ongoing relief efforts in #Lebanon. Del…
Twitter
Today, we salute the #heroes, wounded or killed in action, who have served our country. #PurpleHeartDay https://t.co/4yHljdUaNf
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: I’m blessed to have Sharene by my side & the support of our sons, Sean & Ross. She has committed so much to our family &…
Twitter
RT @CENTCOM: Gen McKenzie informed Gen Aoun of the impending delivery of three C-17s shipments of U.S. relief supplies including food, wate…
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,262,786
Follow Us