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Guard and Reserve Participation in the Air Mobility System: Roles and Constraints

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Mobility forces are being called on as never before to support U.S. foreign policy objectives, especially for short-notice, high-priority missions. As a result, the capabilities of active duty aircrews and aircraft have been stretched to the limit. This increase in demand has raised the question of whether and how the Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard should be utilized for flying peacetime missions. This study examines the historical role of the Reserve and the Guard within the mobility system in order to provide answers. It suggests a number of directions the Air Mobility Command (AMC) might follow to reduce today's stresses on the air mobility system. Whatever combination of solutions is employed, priority must be given to quick- reaction, high-flexibility resources.