Airpower Nation

Americans love aircraft. They captivate us, from the crowds that throng to airshows to the children in the airport lounge to the toddler whose finely-cut dinner is “flown” noisily into her mouth on Air Fork One. The Union Army saw its first aviation advantage with the balloon corps in 1861, and the Wright Brothers built and flew the first controllable, powered heavier-than-air airplane some forty years later. Since that fateful day in 1903, aircraft and later spacecraft firmly embedded themselves in our national character, as American aviators accomplished a long string of first-ever accomplishments with ever-improving machines, pushing to the absolute limits of aerodynamic flight and beyond.

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Airpower’s Dirty Words

No, this isn’t a call for the resurrection of “cranium” and “container” (if they ever really went away). Nor is it a discourse of the pregame compliments shouted at opposing teams by fans of the Eagles or Raiders.  This is a Leading Edge series where we collectively examine those words we airpower advocates employ that…

The DNA of Airpower

Sharing a rich history and close friendship, the French Air Force, Royal Air Force and United States Air Force signed a Tri-Lateral Strategic Initiative Charter in 2013. The Charter was intended to aggregate the world’s pre-eminent airpowers into “three air forces capable of rapid, cohesive and effective coalition operations across the full spectrum of conflict.”[1]…

F-22A Raptor Demonstration Team Prepares for Launch (USAF Photo, SrA Christopher L. Ingersoll)

Airmindedness

Too often our air forces are over-identified with “things”—airplanes, mission sets, or various technologies.  This misses the key reason why our nations have independent air forces.  It is not about tools—it is about the unique way in which independent air force Airmen provide our respective nation’s leaders with effective, efficient policy options that are only…