The Air Force stood up its newest numbered Air Force, the 16th, on Friday at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland’s Gateway Club. It will play a central role in information warfare.
Since last year, the Air Force worked to merge its cyber components with its intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. They will now fold into a new organization under a single commander, Maj. Gen. Timothy Haugh.
One of the organization's goals is to get better information to combatant commanders and other decision makers faster.
Haugh spoke at the Air Space & Cyber Conference in National Harbor, Maryland, in September.
“We're seeing dots connect across missions that are going to enable intelligence to support cyber operations and generate new possibilities," he explained. "What can we do within the cyber domain to now inform decisions in all the other domains that produce outcomes?'
In his new role, Haugh will be in charge of network operations throughout the Air Force. He will also support airmen sent to work with the National Security Agency and other parts of the intelligence community.
This isn’t the first time the 16th Air Force has been active. It was part of a command that saw conducted intelligence operations during the Balkans air campaigns in the 1990s, and it set new precedents for joint warfighting, strategic deterrence and military partnerships. It stood down in 2006.
Carson Frame can be reached at Carson@TPR.org and on Twitter at @carson_frame.