The Kosovo Force is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force, responsible for establishing a secure environment in Kosovo. Its operations are being reduced as Kosovo's armed forces, Kosovo Security Force, established in 2009, become self sufficient. KFOR entered Kosovo on 11 June 1999, two days after the adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 1244. At the time, Kosovo was facing a grave humanitarian crisis, with military forces from the FRY and the KLA in daily engagement. Nearly one million people had fled Kosovo as refugees. KFOR has transferred responsibilities to the Kosovo Police and other local authorities; as of 29 November 2018, KFOR consisted of 4,000 troops. NATO's initial mandate was: to deter renewed hostility and threats against Kosovo by Yugoslav and Serb forces. Today, KFOR focuses on building a secure environment in which all citizens, irrespective of their ethnic origins, can live in peace and, with international aid and civil society are gaining strength. KFOR tasks have included: assistance with the return or relocation of displaced persons and refugees.
The Contact Group countries have said publicly that KFOR will remain in Kosovo to provide the security necessary to support the provisions of a final settlement of Kosovo's status. KFOR contingents were grouped into 4 regionally based multinational brigades; the brigades were responsible for a specific area of operations, but under a single chain of command under the authority of Commander KFOR. In August 2005, the North Atlantic Council decided to restructure KFOR, replacing the four existing multinational brigades with five task forces, to allow for greater flexibility with, for instance, the removal of restrictions on the cross-boundary movement of units based in different sectors of Kosovo. In February 2010, the Multinational Task Forces became Multinational Battle Groups and in March 2011, KFOR was restructured again, into just two multinational battlegroups. Kosovo Force, in PristinaHeadquarters Support Group, in Pristina Multinational Specialised Unit, in Pristina Multinational Battle Group-East, at Camp Bondsteel near Ferizaj Multinational Battle Group-West, at Camp Villaggio Italia near Peć Joint Logistics Support Group, in Pristina KFOR Tactical Reserve Battalion, at Camp Novo Selo Joint Regional Detachment–North, at Camp Novo Selo Joint Regional Detachment– Centre, in Pristina Joint Regional Detachment–South, in Prizren At its height, KFOR troops numbered 50,000 and came from 39 different NATO and non-NATO nations.
The official KFOR website indicated that in 2008 a total 14,000 soldiers from 34 countries were participating in KFOR. The following is a list of the total number of troops. Much of the force has been scaled down since 2008, so current numbers are reflected here as well: Mike Jackson Klaus Reinhardt Juan Ortuño Such Carlo Cabigiosu Thorstein Skiaker Marcel Valentin Fabio Mini Holger Kammerhoff Yves de Kermabon Giuseppe Valotto Roland Kather Xavier de Marnhac Giuseppe Emilio Gay Markus J. Bentler Erhard Bühler Erhard Drews Volker Halbauer Salvatore Farina Francesco Figliuolo Guglielmo Luigi Miglietta Giovanni Fungo Salvatore Cuoci Lorenzo D'Addario Note: The terms of service are based on the official list of the KFOR commanders and another article; when KFOR and other organisations were established, according to some international organisations, Kosovo became a major destination country for women and young girls trafficked into forced prostitution, in part as a result of the presence of peacekeeping forces.
Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force
The Chief of Staff of the Air Force is a statutory office held by a four-star general in the United States Air Force, is the most senior uniformed officer assigned to serve in the Department of the Air Force, as such is the principal military advisor and a deputy to the Secretary of the Air Force. The Chief of Staff is the highest-ranking officer on active duty in the Air Force unless the Chairman and/or the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff are Air Force officers; the Chief of Staff of the Air Force is an administrative position based in the Pentagon, while the Chief of Staff does not have operational command authority over Air Force forces, the Chief of Staff does exercise supervision of Air Force units and organizations as the designee of the Secretary of the Air Force. The current Chief of Staff of the Air Force is General David L. Goldfein. Under the authority and control of the Secretary of the Air Force, the Chief of Staff presides over the Air Staff, acts as the Secretary's executive agent in carrying out approved plans, exercises supervision, consistent with authority assigned to Commanders of the Combatant Commands, over organizations and members of the Air Force as determined by the Secretary.
The Chief of Staff may perform other duties as assigned by either the President, the Secretary of Defense or the Secretary of the Air Force. The Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force a four-star general, is the Chief of Staff's principal deputy; the Chief of Staff of the Air Force is a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff as prescribed by 10 U. S. C. § 151. When performing his JCS duties the Chief of Staff is responsible directly to the Secretary of Defense. Like the other members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the CSAF is an administrative position, with no operational command authority over the United States Air Force; the CSAF is nominated for appointment by the President and must be confirmed via majority vote by the Senate. By statute, the CSAF is appointed as a four-star general; the Chief of Staff is authorized to wear a special service cap with clouds and lightning bolts around the band of the hat. This cap is different from those worn by other general officers of the Air Force and it is for use by the Chief of Staff and Air Force officers serving as Chairman or Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Prior to the creation of this position, General Henry H. Arnold was designated first Chief of the Army Air Forces and Commanding General of the Army Air Forces during World War II. *Three former chiefs of staff would serve as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff: Twining served as the Chairman from August 1957 to September 1960. Brown served as the Chairman from July 1974 to June 1978. Jones served as the Chairman from June 1978 to June 1982; the fourth Air Force officer to have served as the Chairman, General Richard B. Myers, did not serve as Chief of Staff of the Air Force. McPeak is the only Chief of Staff of the Air Force to date who has served as Acting Secretary of the Air Force, thus being the only uniformed Air Force officer to have been the "head of the Air Force". Vice Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force Department of Defense Key Officials 1947–2015. Washington, D. C.: Office of the Secretary of Defense, Historical Office. 2015. HAF MISSION DIRECTIVE 1-4 - CHIEF OF STAFF OF THE AIR FORCE.
Washington, D. C.: Secretary of the Air Force. 7 March 2012. Headquarters United States Air Force Key Personnel. Washington, D. C.: Air Force Historical Studies Office. January 2013. Air Force History Support Office: Air Force Chiefs of Staff
Air Force Cross (United States)
The Air Force Cross is the second highest military award that can be given to a member of the United States Air Force. The Air Force Cross is the Air Force decoration equivalent to the Distinguished Service Cross, the Navy Cross, the Coast Guard Cross; the Air Force Cross is awarded for extraordinary heroism not justifying the award of the Medal of Honor. It may be awarded to any individual who, while serving in any capacity with the U. S. Air Force, herself by extraordinary heroism in combat. Entitled the "Distinguished Service Cross", the Air Force Cross was first proposed in 1947 after the creation of the United States Air Force as a separate armed service; the medal was designed by Eleanor Cox, an employee of the Air Force, was sculpted by Thomas Hudson Jones of the Institute of Heraldry. The Air Force Cross was established by Congress in Public Law 88-593 on July 6, 1960, amending Section 8742 of Title 10, U. S. Code to change the designation of "Distinguished Service Cross" to "Air Force Cross" in case of awards made under Air Force Authority.
Additional awards of the Air Force Cross are annotated by oak leaf clusters, the reverse of every Air Force Cross is engraved with the recipient's name. Title 10, Section 8742. Air Force Cross: Award "The President may award an Air Force Cross of appropriate design, with ribbons and appurtenances, to a person who, while serving in any capacity with the Air Force, distinguishes himself by extraordinary heroism not justifying the award of a Medal of Honor: while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States; the Air Force Cross consists of a bronze cross with an oxidized satin finish. Centered on the obverse of the cross is a gold-plated American bald eagle, wings displayed against a cloud formation; this design is encircled by a laurel wreath in green enamel, edged in gold. The reverse of the cross is suitable for engraving; the service ribbon has a wide center stripe of Brittany blue with narrow stripes of white and red at the edges. The ribbon is identical to that of the Distinguished Service Cross, except for the lighter blue center stripe, indicating the close connection of these awards.
The first award of that Air Force Cross was made posthumously to Major Rudolf Anderson, a U-2 pilot, for extraordinary heroism during the Cuban Missile Crisis. As of October 2017, there have been 202 awards of the Air Force Cross to 197 individuals. One award, the first made, was for actions in the Cuban Missile Crisis. Three were retroactively awarded for actions in World War II. One hundred eighty were awarded for heroism in the Vietnam War, four for heroism during the 1975 Mayagüez Incident following. Two were awarded for the 1991 Gulf War. One was awarded to combat controller Zachary Rhyner for actions in the Shok Valley, Afghanistan on April 6, 2008. Another was awarded to USAF Pararescueman MSgt Ivan Ruiz for heroism in Kandahar Province, Dec. 10, 2013. On October 17, 2017, the Air Force Cross was awarded to Staff Sergeant Richard Hunter, for actions against the Taliban in Kunduz province Afghanistan on November 2, 2016. Fifty awards have been posthumous, including 30 to members missing in action.
Twenty-four have been awarded including 12 Pararescuemen. Seventeen graduates of the United States Air Force Academy have been presented the award, 13 were awarded for conduct while a prisoner of war. There have been four multiple recipients: James H. Kasler John A. Dramesi Leland T. Kennedy Robinson Risner Maj Rudolf Anderson, Jr.: First recipient, posthumously awarded for valor during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Gen Charles G. Boyd, POW for 7 years and the only Vietnam-era POW to reach the four-star rank. Lt Col Charlie L. Brown: One of the three recipients of the award for actions during World War II, while serving with the United States Army Air Forces, the predecessor of USAF. MSgt John A. Chapman, awarded posthumously for heroism in the Battle of Takur Ghar, during the War in Afghanistan. Upgraded to the Medal of Honor. Col George E. "Bud" Day: Medal of Honor recipient and Vietnam War POW Capt Charles B. "Chuck" DeBellevue: F-4 weapon systems officer ace, credited with six MiG kills, the most of any U.
S. aviator during the Vietnam War. Maj Urban L. Drew: One of the three recipients of the award for actions during World War II, while serving with the United States Army Air Forces, the predecessor of USAF. CMSgt Richard Etchberger: USAF Airman who died in the Battle of Lima Site 85. Award upgraded to Medal of Honor. A2C Duane D. Hackney: Pararescueman decorated for valor in Vietnam. Maj Gen Paul Johnson: an A-10 pilot during the Gulf War, helped rescue a downed pilot behind enemy lines. Lt Col James H. Kasler: Vietnam War fighter pilot and POW. Capt Leland T. Kennedy: Vietnam War rescue helicopter pilot. Brig Gen Robin Olds: World War II and Vietnam War fighter pilot, triple ace. Col Ralph Parr: Korean War fighter ace a recipient of the Distinguished Service Cross. A1C William H. Pitsenbarger: Pararescueman and the f
Outstanding Airman of the Year Ribbon
The Outstanding Airman of the Year Ribbon is a military award of the United States Air Force, created on February 21, 1968 by order of Secretary of the Air Force Harold Brown. The first presentation of the award was in June 1970; the Outstanding Airman of the Year Ribbon is the highest personal ribbon award of the United States Air Force. The Outstanding Airman of the Year Ribbon is awarded to any enlisted member of the U. S. Air Force, nominated by their Major Command, Field Operating Agency, or Direct Reporting Unit for competition in the 12 Outstanding Airmen of the Year Program; the Outstanding Airman of the Year program recognizes 12 enlisted members from a cross section of Air Force Career fields. Nominated personnel compete in one of three categories Airman, Non-commissioned Officer, Senior Non-commissioned Officer. Nominations are based only on the member's achievement for the prior calendar year. Though only the prior year is used for nominations, nominees must pass a certain level of scrutiny for their total life and career since nominees are expected to be the most outstanding representatives of the Air Force enlisted force.
The Outstanding Airman of the Year Ribbon is light blue with a center stripe of white, flanked on either side by thin stripes of dark blue and red. Airmen selected as one of the 12 Outstanding Airmen of the Year are authorized to wear the Outstanding Airman badge for one year, are awarded the ribbon with a bronze service star. All other nominated competitors are authorized to wear the ribbon without the service star. Subsequent awards of the ribbon are represented by oak leaf clusters, with the service star being worn to the wearers right. 12 Outstanding Airmen of the Year Program Complete listing of all recipients since the Award's inception Link
The Achievement Medal is a military decoration of the United States Armed Forces. The Achievement Medal was first proposed as a means to recognize the contributions of junior officers and enlisted personnel who were not eligible to receive the higher Commendation Medal or the Meritorious Service Medal; each military service issues its own version of the Achievement Medal, with a fifth version authorized by the U. S. Department of Defense for joint military activity; the Achievement Medal is awarded for outstanding achievement or meritorious service not of a nature that would otherwise warrant awarding the Commendation Medal. Award authority rests with local commanders, granting a broad discretion of when and for what action the Achievement Medal may be awarded; the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, is the United States Navy and U. S. Marine Corps' version of the Achievement Medal; the U. S. Navy was the first branch of the U. S. Armed Forces to award such a medal, doing so in 1961, when it was dubbed the “Secretary of the Navy Commendation for Achievement Medal”.
This title was shortened in 1967 to the "Navy Achievement Medal". On 19 August 1994, to recognize those of the United States Marine Corps who had received the Navy Achievement Medal, the name of the decoration was changed to the "Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal"; the award is referred to in shorthand speech as a "NAM". From its inception in the early 1960s to 2002, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal could not be approved by the commanding officers of ships, aviation squadron, or shore activities who held the rank of Commander. Awards for crewmembers had to be submitted to the Commodore or Air Wing Commander or the first appropriate O-6 in the chain of command for approval, who signed the award and returned it; this led to a lower awarding rate when compared to similar size units in the Army or Air Force awarding their own achievement medals considering that those services did not establish their respective achievement medals until the 1980s. Since 2002 the commanding officers of aviation squadrons and ships have had the authority to award NAMs without submission to higher authority.
For the Army, battalion commanders (or the first O-5 in a soldier's chain of command for the Army Achievement Medal. The United States Coast Guard created its own Achievement Medal in 1967. S. Army and U. S. Air Force issued their own versions of the award with the Army Achievement Medal in 1981 and Air Force Achievement Medal in 1980. Effective 11 September 2001, the Army Achievement Medal may be awarded in a combat area. Since this change over sixty thousand Army Achievement Medals have been awarded in theaters of operations such as Iraq and Afghanistan; the Joint Service Achievement Medal was created in 1983. This award was considered a Department of Defense decoration senior to the service department Achievement Medals; the following devices may be authorized to be worn on the following achievement medals suspension ribbon and service ribbon: All Achievement Medals, "C" device, which signifies meritorious performance "under combat conditions", after January 2016 Army Achievement Medal, for additional awards - oak leaf clusters Air Force Achievement Medal, for additional awards - oak leaf clusters Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, for additional awards - 5/16 inch stars Coast Guard Achievement Medal, for additional awards - 5/16 inch stars Joint Service Achievement Medal, for additional awards - oak leaf clusters Coast Guard Achievement Medal - Operational Distinguishing Device Coast Guard Achievement Medal - Combat Distinguishing Device The following ribbon devices were authorized in the past but have now been discontinued: Air Force Achievement Medal - "V" Device, until December 2016 Army Achievement Medal - "V" Device, until December 2016 Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal - Combat Distinguishing Device, until December 2016 Awards and decorations of the United States government Awards and decorations of the United States military Awards and decorations of the United States Coast Guard Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal Citation Examples HRC Joint Awards FAQ
NATO bombing of Yugoslavia
The NATO bombing of Yugoslavia was the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation's military operation against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia during the Kosovo War. The air strikes lasted from March 24, 1999 to June 10, 1999; the official NATO operation code name was Operation Allied Force. The bombings continued until an agreement was reached that led to the withdrawal of Yugoslav armed forces from Kosovo, the establishment of United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo, a UN peacekeeping mission in Kosovo; the bloodshed, ethnic cleansing of thousands of Albanians driving them into neighbouring countries, the potential of it to destabilize the region provoked intervention by international organizations and agencies, such as the United Nations, NATO, INGOs. NATO countries attempted to gain authorisation from the United Nations Security Council for military action, but were opposed by China and Russia that indicated they would veto such a proposal. NATO launched a campaign without UN authorisation, which it described as a humanitarian intervention.
The FRY described the NATO campaign as an illegal war of aggression against a sovereign country, in violation of international law because it did not have UN Security Council support. The bombing killed between 489 and 528 civilians, destroyed bridges, industrial plants, public buildings, private businesses, as well as barracks and military installations. In the days after the Yugoslav Army withdrew, over 164,000 Serbs and 24,000 Roma left Kosovo and many of the remaining civilians were victims of abuse. After Kosovo and other Yugoslav Wars, Serbia became home to the highest number of refugees and IDPs in Europe; the NATO bombing marked the second major combat operation in its history, following the 1995 NATO bombing campaign in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was the first time that NATO had used military force without the approval of the UN Security Council. After September 1990 when the 1974 Yugoslav Constitution had been unilaterally repealed by the Socialist Republic of Serbia, Kosovo's autonomy suffered and so the region was faced with state organized oppression: from the early 1990s, Albanian language radio and television were restricted and newspapers shut down.
Kosovar Albanians were fired in large numbers from public enterprises and institutions, including banks, the post office and schools. In June 1991 the University of Priština assembly and several faculty councils were dissolved and replaced by Serbs. Kosovar Albanian teachers were prevented from entering school premises for the new school year beginning in September 1991, forcing students to study at home. Kosovar Albanians started an insurgency against Belgrade when the Kosovo Liberation Army was founded in 1996. Armed clashes between the two sides broke out in early 1998. A NATO-facilitated ceasefire was signed on 15 October, but both sides broke it two months and fighting resumed; when the killing of 45 Kosovar Albanians in the Račak massacre was reported in January 1999, NATO decided that the conflict could only be settled by introducing a military peacekeeping force to forcibly restrain the two sides. After the Rambouillet Accords broke down on 23 March with Yugoslav rejection of an external peacekeeping force, NATO prepared to install the peacekeepers by force.
NATO's objectives in the Kosovo conflict were stated at the North Atlantic Council meeting held at NATO headquarters in Brussels on April 12, 1999: An end to all military action and the immediate termination of violence and repressive activities by the Milosevic government. Operation Allied Force predominantly used a large-scale air campaign to destroy Yugoslav military infrastructure from high altitudes. After the third day of aerial bombing, NATO had destroyed all of its strategic military targets in Yugoslavia. Despite this, the Yugoslav Army continued to function and to attack Kosovo Liberation Army insurgents inside Kosovo in the regions of Northern and Southwest Kosovo. NATO bombed strategic economic and societal targets, such as bridges, military facilities, official government facilities, factories, using long-range cruise missiles to hit defended targets, such as strategic installations in Belgrade and Pristina; the NATO air forces targeted infrastructure, such as power plants, water-processing plants and the state-owned broadcaster, causing much environmental and economic damage throughout Yugoslavia.
The Rand Corporation examined the issue in a study. The Dutch then-foreign minister Jozias van Aartsen said that the strikes on Yugoslavia should be such as to weaken their military capabilities and prevent further humanitarian atrocities. Due to restrictive media laws, media in Yugoslavia carried little coverage of what its forces were doing in Kosovo, or of other countries' attitudes to the humanitarian crisis. According to John Keegan, the capitulation of Yugoslavia in the Kosovo War marked a turning point in the history of warfare, it "proved that a war can be won by air power alone". By comparison, diplomacy had failed before the war, the d
Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon
The Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon is a military award of the United States Air Force, first created in June 2003. The ribbon is awarded to any member of the Air Force who completes a standard contingency deployment; the regulations of the Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon define a deployment as either forty-five consecutive days or ninety non-consecutive days in a deployed status. Temporary duty orders qualify towards the ninety-day time requirement. For deployments exceeding 45–90 days, a single Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon will be awarded for the entire time frame rather than issuing multiple awards for the same period of deployed service. For those service members who serve in designated combat zones while deployed, a gold frame, which the Air Force refers to as a gold border, may be attached to the AFESR basic ribbon; the gold border is issued as a one-time award only, regardless of the number of combat operations in which a service member is involved. The Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with gold border may be awarded to certain "over-the horizon" combat assignments, such as remotely piloted vehicle operators for employing a long-range weapon into a combat zone.
It is therefore possible to earn the gold border when stationed at a secure military installation in the United States geographically separated from the battlefield by thousands of miles. Such personnel, must have first earned the Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon before the ribbon can be upgraded with a gold border. Additional awards of the Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon are denoted by oak leaf clusters and the award is retroactive to October 1, 1999; the center stripe is light blue and stands for Air Force capability. From this center stripe outward on each side, the narrow white stripe stands for integrity. Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon Air Force Personnel Center New ribbon recognizes deployed airmen, Air Force Personnel Center Public Affairs, 9/26/2003