Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson announced the results of an in-depth analysis aimed at outlining what the Air Force needs to implement the National Defense Strategy while speaking at the Air Force Association's annual Air, Space and Cyber conference Sept. 17.
“The analysis says what every Airmen already knows,” Wilson said. “The Air Force is too small for what the nation is asking us to do. We have 312 operational squadrons today. The Air Force We Need has 386 operational squadrons by 2030.”
The National Defense Strategy, Air Force leaders said, marks the reemergence of long-term, strategic competition with China and Russia. The Air Force’s imperative is to compete, deter, and win this competition by fielding a force that is lethal, resilient, rapidly adapting and integrates seamlessly with the joint force, allies and partners.