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1. REPORT DATE 2. REPORT TYPE 3. DATES COVERED JAN 1983 N/A TITLE AND SUBTITLE 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Short of War: Major USAF Contingency Operations, 1947-1997 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER
6. AUTHOR(S) 5d. PROJECT NUMBER A. Timothy Warnock 5e. TASK NUMBER 5f. WORK UNIT NUMBER
7. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION NAME(S) AND ADDRESS(ES) 8. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION
REPORT NUMBERAir Univ, Maxwell AFB, AL
9. SPONSORING/MONITORING AGENCY NAME(S) AND ADDRESS(ES) 10. SPONSOR/MONITOR’S ACRONYM(S)
12. DISTRIBUTION/AVAILABILITY STATEMENTApproved for public release, distribution unlimited
13. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES
15. SUBJECT TERMS
USAF Enlisted Men Prepare to Load a C-130....... 182 F-16 at Incirlik AB..................... 187 F-16 Test Aircraft at Eglin AFB.............. 192 437th Airlift Wing Globemaster.............. 206 C-141 at Mogadishu.................... 213 C-5 Unloads Vehicles in Somalia............. 215 NATO AWACS Aircraft over the Adriatic Sea........ 222 F-15 Refuels from a KC-135................ 223 C-130s Staging at MacDill AFB.............. 233 Foreword Since the fall of the Berlin Wall, a series of geographically localized crises caused by political, religious, or ethnic unrest ;
outright military aggression; and natural disasters has re placed the relative stability that characterized international relations for more than fifty years of the Cold War. For the United States Air Force (USAF), this has meant short-notice deployments, airlifts, and other operational missions conducted in reaction to local crises. Such missions-once of secondary importance to nuclear deterrence or preparations for theater war-have come to dominate Air Force operations.
The result has been recognition that global aerospace power and mobility are central to effective American crisis intervention in the post-Cold War world. This recognition has led the U.S. Air Force to restructure itself as an Expeditionary Aerospace Force, exploiting diverse core competencies consisting of global air and space superiority, rapid global mobility, precision engagement, global attack, information superiority, and agile combat support. Via rapid-response air expeditionary forces, the U.S. Air Force can furnish global power and presence for humanitarian or combat purposes-"bombs or bread or both"-in hours to any spot on Earth. A traditional precept of USAF doctrine has been that the service must always be prepared to assess its roles and missions in light of new and ever-changing national policy and strategy. Recognizing that doctrine is largely a distillation of knowledge gained from historical experience, the Air Force Historical Research Agency has compiled this record of USAF contingency operations covering the last half-century.
This book is an effort to meet the needs of Air Force commanders and other decision makers for a useful reference work on contingencies. One of an ongoing series of reference works, it is organized in the style of the recently published The United States Air Force and Humanitarian Airlift Operations, 1947-1994. It adds to the history of the Air Force by providing statistics and narrative descriptions of the Air Force's most significant contingency operations over the last fifty years.
Decision makers, planners, logisticians, and educators may find in these pages examples of lessons learned or themes worthy of further analyses. Scholars, educators, journalists, and the general public may gain an understanding of how the Air Force meets its obligations in a rapidly changing world.
Air Force Basic Doctrine 1, September 1997, states, "... military operations other than war may deter war, resolve conflict, relieve suffering, promote peace, or support civil authorities."
Scope and Definition Sp anning the decades from the beginning of the Cold War to today's strategy of global engagement, the twenty-three operational summaries in this book illustrate each of the objectives for military operations other than war. The summaries deal with a particular type of military operation; that is, contingency, which is defined as an emergency caused by natural disasters, terrorists, subversives, or other unexpected events and involving military forces. A contingency requires plans, rapid response, and special procedures to ensure the safety and readiness of personnel, installations, and equipment. Such operations are as old as the U.S. Air Force, but professional interest in them has increased in direct proportion to their growing importance in the spectrum of post-Cold War operations. This book provides a reference resource that, hopefully, will also stimulate disciplined and analytical investigation of the subject.
The U.S. Air Force conducted each of these contingencies in a combat zone or area of serious civil disturbance. Armed raids, major evacuations, major rescue operations, movement of troops or equipment into foreign countries for peace operations or in support of war, or enforcement of no-fly zones are typical. In sum, the contingencies in this book represent the most significant Air Force flying campaigns undertaken in a hostile, potentially dangerous milieu short of war. The compilation is representative rather than comprehensive. Excluded are operations involving small numbers of aircraft and personnel, strictly humanitarian airlift operations, shows of force, peace operations not involving combat, and those contingencies in which the Air Force played a minor role. Most of the twenty-three entries deal with a single contingency, but several cover two, and occasionally even more, where the operations are closely related.
Arranged chronologically, each entry includes the datesbeginning with the first day of USAF involvement and ending with the last day of USAF operations. Also listed are the location or theater of operations and overseas air bases used. The list of USAF flying organizations involved includes from major command level, where relevant, down to the squadrons and flights, but the latter are recorded only if the parent wings did not physically participate. Also listed are the types of USAF aircraft used ; in the narrative, the writer may also identify aircraft of other services and nations. A map of the area of operations shows geographical and political features affecting events. A brief narrative states the principal purposes of the campaigns, a summary of activities, and lessons learned.
Political/Military Environment Until the collapse of the Soviet Union, most contingencies were either directly or indirectly associated with the Cold War.
At least seven Cold War operations effectively countered Communist provocation. Breaking the Berlin Blockade by airlift marked the first Western victory over post-World War Ii Soviet expansionism. Thirteen years later, the Cuban Missile Crisis ended in a humiliating defeat for the Soviet Union with the forced withdrawal of its nuclear missiles from their bases in Cuba. Several contingencies in Africa, such as Operation NEW TAPE and Operations ZAIRE I and ZAIRE II served to prevent the expansion of Soviet and Cuban influence across the emerging nations of the continent. U.S. intervention in the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Grenada not only countered Communist expansion but also introduced requisite political and economic stability, allowing democratic processes to take root. Eleven Cold War contingencies imposed political stability on chaotic nations or supported peace operations.
Principal Missions USAF airlift capabilities have always been the cornerstone for U.S. global-projection missions. Twelve of the twenty-three entries in this book involved principally military airlift; such as transport of troops, their equipment, and other cargo to support combat operations. Virtually all twenty-three also included some humanitarian airlift; that is, transport of food, clothing, tents, medical supplies, or other cargo for the relief of a civilian population.
Although airlift played a significant supporting role, the basic missions in seven summaries entailed reconnaissance, air-to-air combat, air-to-ground attacks, or close air support of ground forces. The Air Force amply demonstrated its abilities to maintain air superiority with aerial victories over enemy aircraft during Operations SOUTHERN WATCH and PROVIDE COMFORT and by damaging or destroying enemy air defense systems during operations such as URGENT FURY and DENY FLIGHT. Operation DENY FLIGHT also saw the effective use of precisionguided munitions to force an end to violence and aggression. In addition, Air Force personnel usually provided critical combatsupport elements such as reconnaissance, command and control of air traffic, logistics, and air refueling to other U.S. services and allied forces during most military actions.
Role of the Reserve Component One of the clearest changes, illustrated through the study of contingencies, is the, steadily increasing importance of the Air Reserve components-the Air National Guard (ANG) and Air Force Reserve (AFRES). For example, no ANG or AFRES unit participated in Operation VPI'I'LES in 1948-49. During the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, personnel and aircraft from AFRES units supplemented active duty airlift capabilities within the United States. A short three years later, AFRES members voluntarily flew missions to the Dominican Republic, and an ANG unit provided aircraft to enhance long-distance communications. In the early 1970s, implementation of the Total Force Policy resulted in far greater Reserve participation, as was evident in Operations ZAIRE I and II in 1978. During those, at least three AFRES associate airlift wings participated. By Operation UPHOLD DEMOCRACY in 1994, the Air Reserve components were thoroughly integrated into the activities of the regular Air Force.
Not only had they become a vital, integral part of the Air Force's airlift mission capability, but they also provided fighter,
reconnaissance, air refueling, and other functions amounting to some 10 percent of deployed forces.
Joint and Combined Operations In these twenty-three summaries, the U.S. Air Force operated alone in only three. The remainder were joint operations, involving one or more of the other U.S. armed services. Until enactment of the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act of 1986, few joint contingencies had a true joint commander. Rather, the unified (i.e., joint) commander coordinated operations, with each armed services component commander retaining control of his forces. Prime examples included the Dominican Crisis and Operation URGENT FURY.
But, every contingency since 1986 has benefited from a joint commander who exercised full command of all military forces in the area of operations, thus improving the integrated application of force, including air power, towards successful operations.
Fourteen summaries describe combined operations ; that is, military forces from other nations cooperated or worked closely with U.S. armed services, and beginning with DESERT SHIELD /DESERT STORM in 1991, coalition force commanders have directed all contingencies. Ten entries involved multinational organizations, such as the United Nations, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, and the Organization of American States. Virtually all required cooperation from other nations to provide to the U.S. Air Force overflight rights, forward air bases, and other logistical support.
A. TIMOTHY WARNOCKChief, Organizational History Branch Air Force Historical Research Agency
AcknowledgementsRobert T. Cossaboom, Chief, History Office, Air Mobility Command, and members of his staff, Daniel F. Harrington, Historian, History Office, United States Air Forces in Europe ;
Jacob Neufeld, Chief, Projects and Production Division, Air Force History Support Office (AFHSO) ; and Daniel R. Mortensen, Chief of Research, Airpower Research Division, College for Aerospace Doctrine, Research and Education, Air University, carefully read the manuscript, offering constructive, critical comments to improve it. Other readers at AFHSO were Richard Davis, Sheldon Goldberg, Perry Jamison, Priscilla Jones, Edward Mark, Roger Miller, Diane Putney, Wayne Thompson, George Watson, Herman Wolk, and Tom Y'Blood. Larry Benson, AFHSO, provided a copy of his background paper on "Historical Examples of USAF Operations Tempo," which proved very useful. Tammy Rodriguez, editorial assistant, Air Force Historical Research Agency (AFHRA) pulled the material into a single document and edited it for format and consistency.