JANUARY 11 In Washington, D. C., a Congressional Space Commission report recommends that the Air Force receive increased responsibilities and increased organizational realignments.

JANUARY 20 In Washington, D. C., Law­rence J. Delaney becomes acting secretary of the Air Force.

JANUARY 22—26 “Schriever 2001,” the first war game to include elements of space control, including countering hos­tile space capabilities, is conducted by the Air Force Space Command Warfare Center.

February 3 In India, Air Mobility Command (AMC) C-17 Globemaster IIIs convey reliefsupplies and food to vic­tims of a recent earthquake. They are refueled while traversing the Pacific and Indian Oceans by KC-135s.

February 21 At Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, an RQ-1 Predator pilotless drone has been modified to carry a Hell- fire C missile, which it then fires to destroy a target. This becomes the first unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to do so.

February 24 At March Air Force Base, California, Lieutenant Colonel Stayce D. Harris takes control of the 729th Airlift Squadron, becoming the first African

American woman to command an Air Force unit.

April 22—23 At Edwards Air Force Base, California, the RQ-4 Global Hawk flies nonstop to Adelaide, Australia. This is the first transoceanic flight by an unmanned aerial vehicle and it covers 7,500 miles in 23 hours, a new world’s record.

May 7 Off the China coast, an RC-135

aircraft from Kadena Air Base, Okinawa, resumes intelligence flights in inter­national airspace.

May 8 In Washington, D. C., the Secre­tary ofDefense declares that the Air Force has the sole executive control over the Pentagon’s activities in space.

JUNE 1 In Washington, D. C., James G.

Roche gains appointment as the new sec­retary of the Air Force.

June 5 Major GeneralJames E. Sherrard, III, the Air Force Reserve commander, gains his third star to lieutenant general. He advocates a “total force” concept closely integrating Reserves into the regular Air Force.

July 13 Historic Kelly Air Force Base, Texas, the cradle of American military aviation, and McClellan Air Force Base, California, are closed due to budget cuts.

Подпись: 2001 Подпись: 319

AUGUST 6 At Edwards Air Force Base, California, the XF-35B returns to Palm­dale, signaling the end of another success­ful round of flight-testing. En route the aircraft reaches 34,000 feet at Mach 1.2, and sustains it for 3.7 hours, the longest flight of the test program so far.

AUGUST 24 At Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, another Cold War mile­stone passes as the final Minuteman III missile silo, which formed the bulwark of American nuclear deterrence for three decades, is destroyed.

September 6 In Washington, D. C., General John P. Jumper gains appointment as Air Force chief of staff.

September 19 Lockheed Martin contracts with the Air Force to produce an initial production batch of 10 ultramodern F-22 Raptors.

SEPTEMBER 27 In Washington, D. C., Sec­retary of War Donald Rumsfeld declares that President George W. Bush has authorized military aircraft to shoot down commercial liners hijacked in American airspace if an emergency presents itself.

September 29 At the Kodiak Launch Complex, Alaska, the Air Force launches its first space satellite. Heretofore, all space launches were from either Florida or California.

OCTOBER In Afghanistan, the Air Force and CIA begin operations against the Taliban with unmanned, remotely guided RQ-1 Predator aircraft. These high­flying drones are armed with television cameras and deadly Hellfire missiles.

OCTOBER 1 In Washington, D. C., Gen­eral Richard B. Myers becomes the first Air Force officer to serve as chairman of
the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) in almost 20 years.

The Air Materiel Space and Missile System Center are now subordinated to the Air Force Space Command (AFSPA – CECOM). The latter organization now monopolizes all Air Force space concerns.

OCTOBER 7 Over Afghanistan, Opera­tion enduring freedom begins as United States and British warplanes begin a concerted aerial campaign to drive the Taliban and al-Qaeda from power. Lieutenant General Charles F. Wald is also the Joint Force Air Component Commander throughout this operation.

At Whiteman Air Force Base, Mis­souri, B-2 Spirit bombers of the 509th Bomb Wing fly to Afghanistan and back during the longest bombing mission in aviation history.

OCTOBER 8 Over Afghanistan, C-17 Globemaster IIIs perform their first com­bat mission by airdropping pallets of humanitarian daily rations to territory controlled by the Northern Alliance.

Coalition aircraft begin around – the-clock air strikes against Taliban positions throughout Afghanistan. This enables the Northern Alliance to counterattack.

OCTOBER 26 The Department of Defense awards the Lockheed Martin Corporation with a contract to develop the new and highly advanced F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) while Pratt and Whit­ney will develop the engine. This new aircraft will be deployed by Air Force, Navy, and Marine units.

October 28-November 4 Over Afghanistan, coalition aircraft switch from bombing fixed assets of the Taliban and al-Qaeda, to front-line units oppos­ing the Northern Alliance.

NOVEMBER 2 In Afghanistan, the crew of an MH-53J Pave Low helicopter of the 20th Special Operations Squadron lands behind enemy lines to rescue the crew of another MH-53 that crashed; they receive a Mackay Trophy.

NOVEMBER 28 Near Kandahar, Afg­hanistan, Operation SWIFT FREEDOM

unfolds as Air Mobility Command (AMC) C-17 Globemaster III transports convey Army and Special Forces troops to an airstrip.

December 4 Over Afghanistan, coalition aircraft bomb the mountain refuge of Tora Bora, a heavily fortified cave com­plex 55 miles south of Jalalabad, which holds an estimated 2,000 al-Qaeda Arab fighters.

December 5 In Afghanistan, a 2,000- pound bomb dropped by a B-52 acci­dently strikes an American command post, killing three Special Forces soldiers and five Afghan allies. These are the first

American fatalities of Operation endur­ing FREEDOM.

December 12 Over the Indian Ocean, the destroyer Russell rescues the crew of a B-1B bomber that ditched en route to targets in Afghanistan. This is the first B – 1B lost in combat, and also the first air­craft lost during Operation enduring


December 17 At Istres Air Base, France, Air Mobility Command (AMC) C-17 Globemaster IIIs convey French military forces to Afghanistan in concert with Operation ENDURING FREEDOM.

December 26 In Washington, D. C., Undersecretary of War Pete Aldrich announces that the Pentagon approves acquisition of the one-ton, Joint Air-to- Surface Standoff Missile. This is an advanced, precision-guided weapon capable of destroying targets 200 miles distant.