The Air National Guard has a dilemma: Under current plans, the Air Force's purchase of fifth-generation aircraft to recapitalize the fighter force will not meet Air Guard needs as 85 percent of its F-16s will reach the end of their service lives in eight years. That means the nation has a serious problem, because the Air Guard carries the bulk of the homeland air sovereignty mission. Here, two F-16Cs from the Minnesota ANG's 148th Fighter Wing prepare for takeoff next to an F-22 Raptor March 3, 2008, during a deployment to Elmendorf AFB, Alaska. The 148th FW is the first lower-48 unit to support Alaska Command alert and the first F-16 unit to intercept Russian bombers.
US Air Force photo by Lt. Col. Kevin Peterson
Daily Report: The day's top news on the US Air Force, airpower, and national security issues.
Daily Report: Read the day's top news on the US Air Force, airpower, and national security issues.
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