HomeNewsArticle Display

Barrett highlights space, modernization, alliances, people as pressing priorities

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett delivers remarks during the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 27, 2020. The three-day event is a professional development forum that offers the opportunity for Department of Defense personnel to participate in forums, speeches, seminars and workshops with defense industry professionals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne Clark)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AFNS) --

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara M. Barrett said Feb. 27 that successfully launching the Space Force while also modernizing the Air Force, strengthening ties with allies and partners and ensuring a culture of trust for Airmen and their families are the priorities that will drive the service into a successful future.

“Our priorities can be summed up simply,” Barrett told an audience of more than 2,000 Airmen, industry officials and retirees at the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium.

“We need a modern, smart, connected, strong, Air and Space Force to deter and defend against aggression and to preserve precious freedom and peace,” Barrett said in one of her most high-profile appearances since becoming secretary. “We have that in the United States Department of the Air Force today.”

Barrett touched on a range of highlights and aspirations for the Department of the Air Force.

She unveiled the official name of the HH-60W, a new combat rescue helicopter that will be known as the Jolly Green II, a direct connection to the historical exploits of the Air Force rescue community.

She spoke about the importance of space and how the Space Force provides crucial new capabilities in a way that most Americans still don’t fully recognize but rely on every day.

“Few Americans think about how reliant we are on space or how vulnerable our country’s space assets are,” she said. “But as you know, space is essential in today’s American way of life. GPS enables everything from ATMs to weather and traffic reports to ride sharing apps to your phone alarm clocks to precision cameras to the gig economy.

“While space was a relatively peaceful and benevolent domain at the dawn of the space age, things have changed. … Today most of America’s space assets are defenseless. That’s why the president and the secretary of defense formed the Space Force,” she said.

The push to modernize is a common thread across the Department of the Air Force. In space that means adding new jam-resistant satellites and having the ability to respond “if deterrence fails,” she said.

For the entire department it means, “harnessing the power of technology” to develop a new class of weapons such as hypersonics and those using directed energy. It means broader use of artificial intelligence and quantum computing, she said.

Modernization requires updates that are equal parts cultural and operational. The prime example is creating a battle network for the joint force. The concept known as Joint All Domain Command and Control, or JADC2, provides new abilities to collect, analyze and share vast amounts of data to commanders across a spectrum of air, land, sea, space and cyber operations. The common shorthand for such efforts is to connect all shooters to all sensors.

Modernizing the Air Force also means developing and deploying new hardware and equipment. “We’re fielding new weapons such as the F-35 Lightning II, the B-21 Raider, MH-139 Grey Wolf,” she said, referring to the Air Force’s state of the art fighter, the new long-range strike bomber that will eventually replace the venerable B-1 Lancer and B-2 Spirit, and a new multi-mission helicopter.

“These platforms form the core of our future force,” she said.

The strategy outlined Thursday by Barrett was the latest refinement of an effort launched in 2018 that came to be known as “the Air Force We Need.” That effort included the technology focus that Barrett highlighted in her remarks but also the need to increase the Air Force to 386 squadrons.

Barrett also noted the Arctic’s strategic importance and highlighted the department’s efforts in that region as an example of how allies and partners can work together for a common benefit.

“As in space, America is resolute in defending and protecting international norms of access and navigation as Arctic resources and sea routes gain importance. … That’s why maintaining strong defense relationships with Arctic nations who are willing to cooperate is critical. We stand with Canada, Iceland, Norway, Finland, Sweden and Greenland via Denmark. We are stronger together,” she said.

She praised the quality and determination and focus of the 685,000 Airmen of the total force. “The most rewarding part of my role is talking with, and learning from, you,” she said.

“In the last four months I’ve heard from and visited thousands of Airmen, and I’m impressed. Our Airmen and space professionals are among the most talented leaders in the world,” she said.

In return, Barrett said the Air Force must do whatever it can to provide services and support. As an example, she said the Air Force is working with governors and legislatures to increase the chance that professional licenses, such as those for nursing or teaching, granted by one state are recognized in other states. She also said the Air Force must ensure “first-rate schools” for families.

Engage

Twitter
RT @AETCommand: The @DoDEA approved Maxwell Elementary Middle School @MaxwellAFB as the first site for a four-year pilot program to open en…
Twitter
#Airmen and B-52 Stratofortress aircraft operating out of Morón Air Base, Spain, are demonstrating U.S. commitment… https://t.co/mVoSP7Rv9O
Twitter
The #AirForce Service Center launched a new website to serve as a single point of information for #Airmen,… https://t.co/k8VrbtpoP7
Twitter
RT @AFmuseum: Check out this view of the McDonnell XH-20 Little Henry, Bensen X-25A Gyrocopter and the American Helicopter Co. XH-26 Jet Je…
Twitter
.@AirNatlGuard #Airmen helped build Cherokee #veterans homes in Oklahoma as part of the @DeptofDefense's Innovative… https://t.co/9i0p5CgLER
Twitter
.@POTUS to #Airmen during his visit to @RAFMildenhall: "You’re the best of our country. Less than 1% of Americans… https://t.co/VlmUkvizpY
Twitter
RT @HQ_AFMC: High energy lasers kill one target at a time, & high powered microwaves can kill groups or swarms, which is one reason that TH…
Twitter
Check out the latest #AirForce Week in Photos! Which one is your favorite? See the rest at https://t.co/PUTukgX3Qe https://t.co/bWyy06fZ3k
Twitter
RT @AFGlobalStrike: 10 cadets and midshipmen from the @WestPoint_USMA, the @NavalAcademy and the @AF_Academy visited @90thMissileWing as pa…
Twitter
#ABMS will deliver decision superiority to the @usairforce & @SpaceForceDoD. This is all-domain command and contr… https://t.co/52J0YQEQhn
Twitter
The 2-week training will focus on @GenCQBrownJr's #AccelerateChange Action Order C: Competition by dissecting the g… https://t.co/J97obvYz10
Twitter
Building on women’s hair updates announced in February 2021, beginning June 25 when hair is secured behind the head… https://t.co/kjocdaU8Co
Twitter
“When you look at the numbers, 500,000 is a lot of [#COVID19] vaccinations. That reflects every #Soldier and… https://t.co/0hDKneUwUU
Twitter
The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center is sponsoring a research project with the @WitchitaState's National Inst… https://t.co/r1SZzmLUGo
Twitter
.@NellisAFB recently hosted an #AirForce Weapons School Integration exercise that taught graduate-level instructor… https://t.co/sdRcG9Tqle
Twitter
Industry and government operators, engineers, and test professionals assessed the ability to do medical evacuation,… https://t.co/GosqQbx3Ac
Twitter
RT @AirNatlGuard: As part of the @UTNationalGuard's state partnership with Morocco, @UtahAirGuard Airmen are taking part in African Lion 21…
Twitter
“This office is the first organization that will stand-up from an enterprise-wide perspective to address digital ne… https://t.co/94P7CNFxGj
Twitter
"Multi-capable #Airmen is a series of training events designed to engage Airmen in developing a combat skillset out… https://t.co/7b4VFMb9cm
Twitter
"I'm probably not the first to be qualified, but the first to have the opportunity." @GenCQBrownJr sat down with… https://t.co/vh14QdB6sp
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
1,346,627
Follow Us