LACKLAND AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- Twenty-Fourth Air Force changed from Air Forces Strategic to Air Forces Cyber today, thus moving to a nomenclature which better reflects the mission the Numbered Air Force performs for the Air Force and the Department of Defense.
"The name change will not impact the 24th Air Force's mission," said Col. Mark Ware, 24th Air Force director of cyberspace plans and operations. "What the change does is maintain the Air Force naming convention of aligning the Numbered Air Forces with the combatant commands they support. The mission of 24th Air Force has always been grounded in the cyberspace domain. "
Implementation must be accomplished using currently programmed manpower and budgetary resources.
"When 24th Air Force was activated on Aug. 18, 2009, U.S. Strategic Command's cyberspace entities included Joint Functional Component Command - Network Warfare (JFCC-NW) and Joint Task Force - Global Network Operations (JTF-GNO)," said Colonel Ware. "There was no U.S. Cyber Command. On May 21, JFCC-NW and JTF-GNO combined to form the core of USCYBERCOM - a sub-unified command under the authority of USSTRATCOM. On that same day, USSTRATCOM delegated control of the Air Force service component for cyberspace operations - 24th Air Force (AFSTRAT) - to USCYBERCOM. 24th Air Force immediately submitted the organization change request to change its name to 24th Air Force (AFCYBER), to clearly articulate the NAF's role. "
The name change came on a special date for cyberspace history. Colonel Ware said on this date in 2005, then Secretary of the Air Force Michael Wynne and Air Force Chief of Staff T. Michael Moseley added cyberspace into the Air Force mission statement.
'"Deliver sovereign options for the defense of the United States of America and its global interest - to fly and fight in air, space and cyberspace,"' quoted Colonel Ware. "This was the first Air Force-wide acknowledgement of the importance of this warfighting domain. "
In line with the current Air Force mission statement, to fly, fight and win . . . in air, space and cyberspace, the new name of 24th Air Force succinctly conveys the NAF's role in Department of Defense operations.