In episode 46 of the Aerospace Advantage podcast, Operation Enduring Freedom: A 20-Year Air Commander Retrospective Part 1, General Buzz Moseley, USAF (ret), General Chuck Wald, USAF (ret), Lt Gen Dave Deptula, USAF (ret), and Maj Gen Larry Stutzriem, USAF (ret) explore what it was like to plan and execute an air campaign like none other. Their efforts began hours after the 9/11 attacks, with combat operations commencing on October 7th, 2001. Sortie durations stretched aircraft and crews to their limits given the lack of proximate regional bases. In a matter of months, U.S. airpower, in conjunction with indigenous Afghan ground forces and a handful of U.S. special operations units, removed the Taliban from power and destroyed terrorist training camps. In fact, Afghanistan was already in allied control by the time the broader U.S. Army and Marine Corps deployments arrived. So, if you want to know about the decisive phase of Operation Enduring Freedom, it’s a story about airpower. General Wald, USAF (ret.) and General Moseley, USAF (ret.) each served as the head of Central Command Air Forces Commander in back-to-back assignments, General Deptula, USAF (ret.) commanded the combined air operations center, and Major General Stutzriem, USAF (ret.) was the Director of Operations for Joint Task Force – Southwest Asia and Deputy Director of the Combined Air Operations Center. At their core, they were all air commanders in an absolutely pivotal moment in our nation’s history. Today we explore this history and talk about experiences and memories none of them will ever forget. This is the first time they have discussed this history as a group in twenty years, so this is a set of episodes you will not want to miss.
Host: Lt Col John “Slick” Baum, USAF, ret.
Producer: Daniel C. Rice
Executive Producer: Douglas Birkey
Guest: Lt Gen (ret.) David Deptula, Dean, The Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies
Guest: Maj Gen (ret.) Larry “Stutz” Stutzriem, Director of Research, The Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies
Guest: Douglas Birkey, Executive Director, The Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies
Guest: Gen (ret.) T. Michael “Buzz” Moseley, USAF
Guest: Gen (ret.) Charles F. “Chuck” Wald, USAF