Air Power in Interagency Operations

Authored by: James S. Corum

Routledge Handbook of Air Power

Print publication date:  February  2018
Online publication date:  February  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138632608
eBook ISBN: 9781315208138
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter examines the evolution of the interagency concept in modern conflict and the role that air power has played in interagency operations. It looks at the beginnings of air power operations in partnership with civilian agencies in the Cold War that set an early model for the US Air Force. The interagency concept evolved during the Vietnam War, which saw the first true interagency operations, and was revived to deal with irregular threats to the United States in the war on drugs in the 1990s. Finally, the interagency concept has become an indispensable construct for waging modern conflict and has expanded in each step of the evolution of the role of air power. The work concludes that interagency operations have become one of the major tools in modern conflicts with asymmetric enemies. The interagency organisation has proven its worth as a means of effective command and control for air, ground, and sea assets. Western nations will see extensive use of interagency operations in the future, and air power will be a major part of these operations. However, to ensure the full cooperation of the participating agencies, the joint interagency task force needs to have a clearly defined mission.

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