The Secretary of the Air Force is appointed by the President and must be approved by the Senate.
The current Secretary of the Air Force is Dr. James G. Roche. Roche submitted his resignation on 16 November 2004. Secretary Roche plans to depart January 20, 2005, or sooner if his successor is confirmed by the Senate before then.
The Eighth AirForce had attempted to use both the P-47 and P-38 as escorts, but while the Thunderbolt was a capable dog-fighter it lacked the range, even with the addition of drop tanks to extend its range, and the Lightning proved mechanically unreliable in the frigid altitudes at which the missions were fought.
The USAF modernized its tactical airforces in the late 1970's with the introduction of the F-15, A-10, and F-16 fighters, and the implementation of realistic training scenarios under the aegis of Red Flag.
The AirForce is managed by the Department of the AirForce lead by the Secretary of the AirForce (SECAF), and consisting of the Air Staff and field units.
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