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REMOTE “CONTROL”

How (and why) America can now command its key air assets in the Middle East remotely from U.S. soil.

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WHAT TO KNOW

Al Udeid Air Base

What: Main point of command for all of U.S. air power in the Middle East. Largest U.S. airbase in the region.

Where: Qatar

Why: Positions hundreds of planes, drones, fighter jets and as many as 10,000 troops strategically in the Persian Gulf.

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WHAT HAPPENED

Historic First: On the last Sunday of Sept., instead of controlling hundreds of air assets from the Middle East, U.S. command & control operations moved to a South Carolina air base.

The U.S. military plans on shifting control to S.C. base (or elsewhere) periodically; has goal of doing so routinely, even daily, in the future.

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WHY IT MATTERS

Having a “remote” Middle East command center for air assets gives America a “back up” to its regional base.

“…we can’t afford to have a single point of failure.”

Maj. Gen. Chance Saltzman

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ALSO…

“Iran has indicated multiple times through multiple sources their intent to attack U.S. forces.”

Col. Frederick Coleman, commander of the 609th Air & Space Operations Center at Al Udeid, went on to say "the region is calming down…except for Iran.” Some suggest a remote command center makes Al Udeid less of a physical target.
Current Events

MIDDLE EAST LATEST

  • Iran: Recently bombed an oil tanker; reportedly behind a drone strike in Saudi Arabia.
  • Iraq: Nationwide protests ignited this week due to poor living conditions. Current gov’t viewed as having tight ties with Iran.
  • Saudi Arabia: U.S. recently deployed equipment & 200 “support personnel” to Saudi Arabia in light of oil field attack.
Current Events

Al Udeid is pronounced "All You Deed" - Col. Coleman who overseas the base told The Washington Post (granted access to observe the remote command operation): "Eventually I'd like to be able to do this from Starbucks."

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