MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho (AFNS) --
Air Combat Command selected five units to serve as test beds for the Air Force’s new deployment model in January 2022 and these units, designated as “lead wings,” were tasked to figure out how to rapidly generate combat power as a deployed force anytime, anywhere.
The 366th Fighter Wing was one of the five units selected and the wing finished their final self-generated exercise, Raging Gunfighter 23-1, and are now approaching their final test before initial operational capability, Agile Flag.
Raging Gunfighter 23-1 required the construction of a forward operating site providing Airmen with life-support functions, such as heat and shelter during the cold Idaho winter and would support operations during field-conditions.
“Raging Gunfighter was a significant test of the Airbase Squadron Construct,” said Senior Master Sgt. Patrick Garber, 366th Airbase Squadron senior enlisted leader. “Our ABS Gunfighter Airmen exhibited resilience and showcased advanced problem-solving skills turning an empty field into a life support area capable of supporting lead wing operations.”
The ABS support enabled lead wing Airmen to operate in a simulated contested environment, forcing previously more operationally independent units to work and communicate together to ensure safe and effective F-15E Strike Eagle operations at home station and at nearby simulated contingency airfields such as Magic Valley Regional Airport in Twin Falls, Idaho, or Gowen Field, the home of the 124th Fighter Wing, in Boise, Idaho.
The conclusion of RG 23-1 aimed to arm Airmen with critical information about their strengths and weaknesses going into Agile Flag and earning the Initial Operational Capability status achievement.
Gunfighter Airmen now have a brief period to address any gaps in capabilities and develop improved processes before leaving for Agile Flag.
The 366th FW lead wing construct is made up of an airbase squadron sustaining the force at a forward operating site; mission force generation elements projecting combat airpower in diverse locations; and a lead wing command and control element tracking and deconflicting aircraft.
"It is an honor that Air Combat Command chose the 366th Fighter Wing to serve as a lead wing," said Col. Ernesto DiVittorio, 366th FW commander. "The Gunfighters have been hard at work honing Agile Combat Employment skills to be the nation's most lethal lead wing. The success of Raging Gunfighter is the result of that hard work. The 366th Fighter Wing is ready to take on Agile Flag and achieve initial operational certification."