23rd Special Tactics Squadron

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23rd Special Tactics Squadron
USAF Combat Control Team at Toussaint L'Ouverture Airport with C-17.jpg
Country United States of America
Branch United States Air Force
TypeSpecial Operations Forces
RoleSpecial Operations
Part ofUnited States Special Operations Command Insignia.svg U.S. Special Operations Command
Shield of the United States Air Force Special Operations Command.svg Air Force Special Operations Command
Garrison/HQHurlburt Field, FL
Motto(s)We Who Dare
EngagementsWar in Afghanistan
Iraq War
23rd Special Tactics Squadron emblem23rdSTS.jpg

The 23rd Special Tactics Squadron (23rd STS) is one of the Special Tactics units of the United States Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC). The 23rd STS was previously designated the 1723rd Special Tactics Squadron prior to 1992.


The squadron was constituted as the 23rd Fighter Control Squadron (Special) on 10 January 1943, and activated on 6 February. It dropped the "(Special)" designation on 16 September. The 23rd was inactivated on 29 October 1945, and disbanded on 8 October 1948.[1]

It was reconstituted and consolidated with the 1723rd Combat Control Squadron on 1 March 1992. The 1723rd was redesignated the 1723rd Special Tactics Squadron on 1 April 1990. On 31 March 1992, it was redesignated the 23rd Special Tactics Squadron.[1]

Then-MSgt Bart Decker from the 23rd STS, on horseback in the Balkh valley, during the initial days of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan in 2001.
U.S. Air Force Special Tactics Commandos from the 23rd Special Tactics Squadron training in Jordan

Members of the unit have participated in Operation Just Cause (1989), Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm (1990–1991), Operation Provide Comfort (1991), Operation Allied Force, Kosovo in 1999, and have been engaged in combat since October 2001 in Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Members of the U.S. Air Force's 23rd Special Tactics Squadron took part in Haiti earthquake relief operations by providing air traffic control operations at Haiti's Toussaint Louverture International Airport.[2] In the aftermath of Hurricane Michael in 2018, the 23rd came to clear and establish the runway at Tyndall Air Force Base. [3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "23rd Special Tactics Squadron". Hurlburt Field. 27 April 2009. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  2. ^ Shaughnessy, Larry (15 January 2010). "Chaos at Haiti airport calmed by Air Force". CNN. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  3. ^ "Tyndall F-22s, Left Behind Before Michael Hit, Possibly Damaged Beyond Repair". Retrieved 2018-10-13.

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