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General McNabb takes command of AMC

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SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. (USTCNS) --- Gen. Duncan J. McNabb took command of Air Mobility Command during a ceremony here Oct. 14.

During the ceremony, the new AMC commander discussed the importance of AMC now and in the future.

"It has been six years since I left here as commander of the [Tanker Airlift Control Center]," said General McNabb. "And it seems like I've been fighting to get back here ever since I left."

The general said although he has spent the past six years at the Pentagon, his heart has always been with AMC.

"When I think about this command, I am so honored to be entrusted [as its new commander]," added the general. "AMC is truly one of the crown jewels in our national defense. It's our strategic ability to move, and we are the only ones who have it."

General McNabb said he was amazed as he watched AMC's response to Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita. He said from establishing and maintaining air operations, to moving evacuees and patients out of harm's way, and delivering critical supplies and equipment, AMC performed magnificently.

"The world depends on you, and you always deliver," added the general.

He said AMC's enlisted corps is also "delivering."

"The advantage we have across this world is not our weapons systems, it is our great enlisted corps. You are the best," he said. "When the Soviets visited and saw what we had in the United States, it wasn't our generals that wow'd them. It wasn't our rockets or our ships or our aircraft. It was our enlisted corps. They were marveled by our tremendous enlisted corps."

General McNabb also discussed the importance of AMC's Total Force of active duty, Guard and Reserve Airmen.

"Nobody does [Total Force] better than AMC," he said. "When we get together, we do it superbly. And as we go to the future, Total Force will become ever more important."

In talking about his return to Scott AFB, General McNabb said he feels like he has come home.

"Our youngest [child] was born here. We taught our kids to ride their bikes here, and when we came back the second time, we taught them how to drive here," General McNabb said. "We also have tremendous friends in this community. When you look at Scott, the warm feeling that it has is much to do with the great community that is here."

General McNabb also said that he takes command of AMC with the full knowledge of its importance.

"To the people of Air Mobility Command, I am so honored to be with you again," he said. "We are entrusted by the American people with their most precious and fundamental right ... their freedom. We have tremendously important work to do, the nation depends on us, and I can't wait to do this with you -- together."

Before handing command of AMC to General McNabb, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. T. Michael Moseley also discussed the importance of air mobility and the trust he has in AMC's new commander.

"We have a lot of work ahead of us, and there isn't anyone better to do this than [General McNabb]," General Moseley said. "This country's at war and this population is depending on the American military to do this. And to a certain extent, the world is depending on Air Mobility Command to be able to deliver, at the right time and the right place, the equipment, the people, the capabilities, and the effects required to fight the Global War on Terrorism."

The general also discussed what the Air Force and its coalition and Guard and Reserve partners are doing today. He said the Total Force is engaged in contingency operations such as Noble Eagle, Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom, as well as humanitarian missions for hurricane relief in the United States and Guatemala and earthquake relief in Pakistan.

The general said with everything the Air Force is doing today, "Air Mobility Command sets the gold standard for being able to be there quick and being able to bring the required items on time and deliver the desired effect."

General Moseley added that no other country in the world can do this, and no other military in the world has the reach and the mobility that the U.S. Air Force presents.

The general reminded the audience that the U.S. Air Force has been at war for the past 14 years, since the mobility forces of the first wing deployed into the eastern province of Saudi Arabia in August of 1990.

"This Air Force and this Air Mobility Command is the most experienced Air Force we've had since the day after World War II," said the general. "The challenges that we're facing in this war on terrorism are many, but with this Air Force, with this combat experience, and with this spirit across the total Air Force, we are blessed. [General McNabb], you have the best Air Mobility Command -- the most combat-experienced Air Mobility Command -- that we've ever had."

As AMC commander, General McNabb is responsible for more than 148,000 men and women - active duty, Air National Guard, Air Force Reserve and civilians - who provide rapid, global mobility and sustainment for America's armed forces. The command also plays a crucial role in providing humanitarian support at home and around the world. Additionally, many special duty and operational support aircraft and aeromedical evacuation missions are also assigned to AMC.

General McNabb has extensive experience in the mobility world. He was an instructor navigator, instructor pilot, chief pilot and airlift director at Norton AFB, Calif., and he has held various squadron, group and wing command positions within AMC. The general also commanded the Tanker Airlift Control Center here for nearly two years during the late-1990s.

The general has logged thousands of flying hours in mobility aircraft, including the C-141 Starlifter, C-17 Globemaster III, C-20 and C-21. He is also a command pilot and navigator with more than 5,400 hours flown in a variety of aircraft, including the T-37, T-38, C-141, C-17, C-21, C-20 and UH-1N.

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