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Aligning the Air Force for 2035: An exclusive Q&A with LGen Eric Kenny

I’m anxiously awaiting the Army to release a Force 2035 ‘plan’ where they have just cut and pasted over the RCAF one.
This bit from the article is a piece of very good news in my opinion:

The STTC project was initially envisioned to give us enough aircraft to do three continuous lines of tasking, which would provide us a transport as well as a refueling capability. NORAD modernization has provided us funding to buy additional air refueling capacity. So, we will go from a requirement of three lines of tasking to five. This means the fleet will be larger than the initially envisioned five to six A330-200s. I foresee somewhere around nine total aircraft, but that is not finalized. All those are envisioned to be MRTTs.
LGen Kenny: Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have gone down by several hundred people. That’s across all our 28 Air Force-managed trades. We’re also seeing it across all the other trades that work at our Wings. There are many reasons, but it’s primarily from the lack of recruitment that occurred since March 2020 until well into 2021. We were recruiting, but to a much lower number because of Covid-19 constraints on ab initio training. Coupled with a normal release rate, we have less people.

We aren’t short because of lack of recruiting during the pandemic and what he calls a “normal” release rate.