‘Our Alliance now faces the increasingly dire risk of not having the right capabilities and / or sufficient quantities of air power and access to space capabilities to cope with the security challenges outlined in NATO’s forward looking Strategic Concept.’ – This is a quote from General Frank Gorenc, out of the foreword of the JAPCC study ‘Air and Space Power in NATO – Future Vector’. It refers to the lengthy run of defence cuts over the last decades and the diminishing Air and Space Power capabilities as a consequence.
It’s my pleasure to open the 18th JAPCC Journal. First of all I would like to welcome our new Director, General Frank Gorenc. We are delighted to have him as our new boss. I am also very pleased with the interview from our former Director, General Breedlove, since May the Supreme Allied Commander Europe. The use of armed Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) in operations has already led to heated and intensive discussions. Dr. Mark R. Jacobson stresses that NATO has to begin both informal and formal discussions over what role these RPA (erroneously called ‘drones’) may play in Alliance operations.
I am delighted to introduce the 17th edition of the JAPCC Journal which contains two specific articles that expand on the Pooling and Sharing issues I raise above (page 54 and 74); I urge you to read them. But we start this edition with an interview with Major General Finn Kristian Hannestad, Chief of the Royal Norwegian Air Force (page 6); who says that Norway’s unique situation allows it to continue investing in future technologies, such as the F-35A.
We begin this edition with an interview with Brigadier General Jiří Verner, Chief of the Czech Air Force; whom we are indebted to for providing a privileged insight into developments within the Czech Air Force whilst also stressing the exceptional importance of Air Forces in military operations. Later we take a look at the Czech approach to maintaining a viable Ground Based Air Defence (GBAD) capability through modernisation and the possibilities of cooperation with neighbouring nations as a ‘Smart Defence’ opportunity.
In this edition of the Journal we offer our analysis of counter-piracy operations and provide you with an update to this delicate issue. Our Maritime Air expert will present the key results of an experiment conducted in gaining insights into potential commitment levels of A&S ISR platforms in the Region off the Horn of Africa.
This edition contains submissions from Australia, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. I want to especially thank our contributors, and I hope you feel inspired to further debate the topics inside these pages. Your thoughts and ideas will help shape the future of Air and Space Power.
We begin the thirteenth edition of the JAPCC Journal with two contrasting articles. The first looks at one of the world’s oldest Air Forces and the second at its youngest. Few need reminding of the genesis of Air Warfare during the Italo-Turkish War in 1911, where reconnaissance and bombing sorties by the Servizio Aeronautico represented the first ever use of heavier-than-air aircraft in armed conflict. Air Power has come a very long way since then and we are indebted to the Chief of the Italian Air Force for his insights into today’s challenges.
Air Power is fundamental to ISAF campaign design; in their article, Gen Both and Col Jinnette describe the contribution of CAS and suggest that role realignment might better utilise platform versatility. In addition to ends and means, we must look at the ways; do we really still need to predominantly operate in pairs?
A&S Power judicially applied can have a profound effect and provides western powers with their very own asymmetric advantage. Indeed, it might be argued that we have contributed to the complex character of contemporary operations by driving competitors from the skies. Against that backdrop, and with our 2010 Conference in mind, we have dedicated this edition to the ‘Roles and Challenges of A&S Power in Contemporary Operations’ and I have been delighted with the contributions that have explored a challenging theme from many angles.
Air & Space provides a vital line of communication for both the movement of materiel and information and, therefore, must be protected if we are to even reach the starting line in fulfilling our goals. But it doesn’t end there – countless operations have highlighted the advantages of dominating the Air environment and, as a number of articles in this edition point out, Space is rapidly reaching, if not already at, a similar point.