NEWS | Dec. 9, 2013

"Value the mission," USSTRATCOM Commander speaks to Airmen Conducting Strategic Deterrence

By 2nd Lt. Christen Ornella 90th Missile Wing Public Affairs

F.E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE, Wyo. -- Admiral Cecil D. Haney, commander, U.S. Strategic Command, and a career Navy submariner, visited F.E. Warren AFB, Wyo. following his trip to Minot Air Force Base, N.D., to see the deterrence mission close up, and share his thoughts and insight with base personnel at a commander's call, Dec. 3, at the base theater.

Haney began by thanking the Airmen who carry out the strategic deterrence mission every day.

"Being able to get some dose of the reality of the hard work that goes on here was validated today by my opportunity to see these stellar, stellar folks," Haney said, applauding the wing for what he witnessed during his visit. "It is good to see in the audience today civilian as well as uniformed members, because we are one in the same -- one sport -- that allows us to have such a significant and respected strategic nuclear capability."

Haney reminded Airmen to be proud of being a part of the nuclear deterrent business and commended them for their professionalism.

"I'm here to tell you that your work, at all levels, is very well-appreciated and admired," Haney said.

Haney told the gathered crowd that he had been impressed by all he had seen during his visits with the missile wing personnel and units.

"Whether it is getting to see some of the maintenance facilities, some training facilities, or our security forces, it is all good."

Haney thanked the Airmen for sharing their facilities and knowledge with him.

"From all of the scorecards I've looked at very recently, you all are doing a fantastic job," Haney said.

During a recent conversation between Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter and Haney, Carter, who frequently discusses and has a lot of respect for the nuclear enterprise, asked Haney to pass along a message to the wing:

"[Carter] said, 'Make sure you tell them not to get mesmerized about what's in the news, stay focused on the job, and know that they've done a job we can all be proud of.'"

Haney then described how much our mission means to the American people.

"You should want to be -- expect to be -- held to a higher standard," Haney explained. "[The nuclear enterprise is] an essential piece about what America is about."

Haney asked the audience to remember why they do what they do every day.

"If you start thinking it is going to be a mundane kind of day, pinch yourself, and understand just how important what your part is and just how important it is to our nation," Haney said. "Value the mission you do here."

The deterrence mission is a high priority, and Haney plans to return here for future visits.

He concluded with some career advice for the audience.

"Don't take it for granted. Continue to learn and grow in your technical area and improve your educational dimension and stature," Haney said, "and don't let anything sacrifice your integrity."

Haney left F.E. Warren Airmen with a charge to take care of themselves and each other, and as leaders, to be hopeful, creative and innovative.

Source: "Value the mission," U.S. Strategic Commander speaks to Airmen Conducting Strategic Deterrence