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USAF Teaches Brawling
by James Dunnigan
February 24, 2008

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The U.S. Air Force, with over 20,000 of its airmen having served in Iraq, and been exposed to ground combat, has decided to upgrade the combat training all airmen get. While the air force has its own force of security troops, who receive infantry training, Iraq demonstrated that the war could come to everyone. Not since Vietnam, have air force ground operations faced the threat of ground attack. While most air force warplanes operate from nearby nations, and not in Iraq itself, there are still plenty of airfields in Iraq and Afghanistan that have to be defended, and are always subject to terrorist attack. Such attacks have been rare, largely because the air force has, like the army, put a lot of effort into defending those bases.

But from now on, in addition to more training with assault rifles and pistols, all airmen will also take a course in hand-to-hand combat. The new Air Force Combatives program [PHOTO] is a 20 hour version of the 40 hour U.S. Army Combatives Program. It basically teaches you the best moves to make if you are ever in a hand-to-hand combat situation. Airmen will be encouraged to take additional training, after they have completed the mandatory 20 hours of instruction. Those who have served in Iraq, and especially those who came back with a combat badge, don't need much encouragement.

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