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162nd FW christens Predator Control Station

The Arizona Air National Guard's Predator Ground Control Station was christened, June 21 at 8 a.m. by Maj. Gen. Michael J. Shira, assistant adjutant general and commander, Joint Force Headquarters, Arizona Air National Guard, Phoenix, Arizona.  The GCS, which can be most closely compared to the cockpit of an aircraft will start operations in the next few weeks.  Arizona ANG aircrews trained to fly the Predator will fly combat missions 24 hours a day, seven days a week in support of our troops deployed in theater.  Although pilots and sensors controlling the aircraft will be right here at Davis-Monthan AFB, satellite technology allows the aircraft they are flying to physically be overseas supporting current combat operations.  The main mission of the Predator is to provide Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), but often times falls into the role of Close Air Support (CAS).  In the CAS role, the Predator either works closely with other CAS assets, such as the A-10, or, in some cases provides firepower of it's own with the use of ROVER technology and Hellfire missiles.  The Arizona National Guard has been working tirelessly for nearly two years to make this mission a reality.  The combat theater's requests for the Predator are well above what can be provided at the current operations level and hopefully this is just the beginning of the Guard's role in helping to meet the needs of those in harm's way. The Arizona ANG would like to pass their thanks to the many units on Davis-Monthan who went above and beyond to provide the support needed to stand up this brand new combat mission squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jake Richmond)

The Arizona Air National Guard's Predator Ground Control Station was christened, June 21 at 8 a.m. by Maj. Gen. Michael J. Shira, assistant adjutant general and commander, Joint Force Headquarters, Arizona Air National Guard, Phoenix, Arizona. The GCS, which can be most closely compared to the cockpit of an aircraft will start operations in the next few weeks. Arizona ANG aircrews trained to fly the Predator will fly combat missions 24 hours a day, seven days a week in support of our troops deployed in theater. Although pilots and sensors controlling the aircraft will be right here at Davis-Monthan AFB, satellite technology allows the aircraft they are flying to physically be overseas supporting current combat operations. The main mission of the Predator is to provide Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), but often times falls into the role of Close Air Support (CAS). In the CAS role, the Predator either works closely with other CAS assets, such as the A-10, or, in some cases provides firepower of it's own with the use of ROVER technology and Hellfire missiles. The Arizona National Guard has been working tirelessly for nearly two years to make this mission a reality. The combat theater's requests for the Predator are well above what can be provided at the current operations level and hopefully this is just the beginning of the Guard's role in helping to meet the needs of those in harm's way. The Arizona ANG would like to pass their thanks to the many units on Davis-Monthan who went above and beyond to provide the support needed to stand up this brand new combat mission squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jake Richmond)