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News > AFCENT stands up Air Warfare Center
AFCENT stands up Air Warfare Center

Posted 8/11/2011   Updated 8/11/2011 Email story   Print story


by Master Sgt. Chance Babin
380th Air Expeditionary Wing public affairs

8/11/2011 - SOUTHWEST ASIA  -- Lt. Gen. Mike Hostage, the commander of U.S. Air Force Central Command, presided over a ceremony here July 21 in which officials activated the AFCENT Air Warfare Center and marked the inactivation of the 363rd Flying Training Group.

"The men and women of the 363rd have played a central role in events that have shaped our Air Force for the past 60 years," Hostage said. "You have been on the cutting edge, building partnership capacity in this region."

The new AFCENT AWC provides a training venue, the opportunity to develop better working relationships with participating nation states and strengthens U.S. commitment to regional allies, officials said.

The staff of the new AWC will also include the Integrated Air Missile Defense Center of Excellence (IAMDC) and supports host nation air force and air defense in a wide spectrum of tactical and operational training. The center is modeled after the U.S. Air Force Warfare Center at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., and provides strategic-level engagement for the U.S. Air Force and develops partnerships with nations who support the U.S.

At the ceremony, Hostage explained that the 363rd has particular meaning for him because of its rich heritage and the role the unit has had in several Air Force events through its history. Hostage thanked the men and women of the 363rd for their service.

"It was your decision to put on this uniform and serve your country that makes all of this possible," he said. "Your service allows the men and women of the U.S. and its coalition partners the privilege of freedom and the ability to live their lives in security and peace."

Hostage then thanked outgoing 363rd FTG Commander Col. Jonathan Owens for his leadership of the unit and welcomed in Col. Robert Swaringen as the commander of the AFCENT AWC.

Swaringen took command of the AWC, highlighting the incredible opportunities that lie ahead. He promised to not waste a single day.

"I will do everything in my power to continue the great legacy [Owens] has set," Swaringen said. "I am excited to be here and be a part of this team. Our mission has not changed--to forge tomorrow's coalition today. Together we will further our enduring legacy of cooperation."

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