Innovation is key to stabilizing the Pacific

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Torri Ingalsbe
  • Air Force Public Affairs Agency, Operating Location-P
The only way to continue forward is through innovation, Gen. Hawk Carlisle, commander of the Pacific Air Forces Command, said during a speech at the 2014 Air Force Association’s Air & Space Conference and Technology Exposition, Washington D.C., Sept. 16.

“You need only look at the papers or the news today and everybody realizes the world that we face in respect to adversaries and challenges,” Carlisle said. “The way to get through this is through innovation.”

The PACAF strategy is a three-pronged approach of expanding engagement, increasing combat capability and improving warfighter integration to satisfy the needs and requirements from the U.S. and its allies.

“It’s not earth-shattering,” Carlisle said. “But it’s the kinds of things we do day in and day out in support of the [combatant commander] out in the Pacific to get the mission done that he’s asking us to do.”

The general noted challenges, but also the new and different ways PACAF Airmen are meeting those challenges.

“Today we have significantly more mission than we have money, manpower or time,” Carlisle said. “I want every Pacific Airman to go and do the next most important thing for the warfighter, not the next thing in his inbox.”

He explained that thinking about tactics, techniques and procedures in a different way, and using existing equipment in a different way, helps meet the challenges of an every-changing fiscal and geopolitical environment.

“We owe that to the American people, that the very next dollar we spend is an increase in combat capability for our force,” Carlisle said. “We have a moral obligation to this nation to produce the very best Air Force we can produce, given the resources they give us.”
He highlighted stories of PACAF Airmen, who are leading the charge with innovative ideas and dedication to the mission.

“Our resilient Airmen are absolutely incredible,” he said. “We don’t have enough of them, but they are amazing. We’re doing everything in our power to make sure we’re taking care of our Airmen. They’re the ones who make the mission happen, they’re the ones who are going to make us successful, they’re the ones who are going to innovate and find ways to solve the problems that we have.”