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Air Force Reveals New Airpower Doctrine

Washington Report

Air Force leaders have approved what the service has referred to as “perhaps the most sweeping change of Air Force basic doctrine in the service’s history.”

The revised Air Force Doctrine Publication-1 sets the foundation for the evolution of airpower and the concept of mission command, officials said.

The changes coincided with a new mission statement for the service. The new mission is “To fly, fight, and win… airpower anytime, anywhere.”

Gen. Charles Q. Brown, the Air Force chief of staff, said the revised doctrine and mission statement are meant to ensure that all airmen – active duty, Guard, Reserve or civilian – understand their contribution to airpower.

“When it comes it comes to airpower, it’s about the fact that we can fly, fight and win anytime and anywhere,” Brown said. “That is tried and true – how we exploit the air domain, operating in and through the air domain. That’ what we’ve done since we became an Air Force and that’s what we’ll continue to do. How we do that might change based on what we see happening in the world and where technology might take us.”

The updated doctrine defines mission command as “a return to the philosophy of mission accomplishment guided by commander’s intent, while operating in environments characterized by increasing uncertainty, complexity and rapid change.”

It also updates the legacy tenant of “centralized control, decentralized execution” to “centralized command, distributed control and decentralized execution.”

Brown said distributed control will allow the force to focus on the Joint Warfighting Concept and address rapidly changing and increasingly challenging operating environments.

The full doctrine is available online at af.mil.