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Team Shaw receives “flag” education

Team Shaw members attend a 55th Fighter Squadron “flags” exercise brief at the 20th Force Support Squadron Carolina Skies Club and Conference Center at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Nov. 15, 2017.

Team Shaw members attend a 55th Fighter Squadron “flags” exercise brief at the 20th Force Support Squadron Carolina Skies Club and Conference Center at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Nov. 15, 2017. The briefing served as an opportunity for the base populous to learn about what various squadrons do during temporary duty assignments to Red Flag, Green Flag, Checkered Flag and Combat Archer. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Christopher Maldonado)

U.S. Air Force Capt. Taylor Roach, 55th Fighter Squadron (FS) flight commander, speaks to members of Team Shaw during a 55th FS “flags” exercise brief at the 20th Force Support Squadron Carolina Skies Club and Conference Center at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Nov. 15, 2017.

U.S. Air Force Capt. Taylor Roach, 55th Fighter Squadron (FS) flight commander, speaks to members of Team Shaw during a 55th FS “flags” exercise brief at the 20th Force Support Squadron Carolina Skies Club and Conference Center at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Nov. 15, 2017. During the brief, attendees learned about the numerous training opportunities the exercises provide to hone the skills of F-16CM Fighting Falcon pilots. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Christopher Maldonado)

SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. -- Team Shaw members attended a 55th Fighter Squadron “flags” exercise brief, at the Carolina Skies Club and Conference Center at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Nov. 15.

The 55th FS held the brief to teach service members about the 20th Fighter Wing’s training missions during the Red Flag, Green Flag, Checkered Flag and Combat Archer exercises. These training events occur at Nellis AFB, Nevada, Tyndall AFB, Florida, Eglin AFB, Fla., and Hill AFB, Utah, and other installations respectively.

Attendees learned how each exercise provides the F-16CM Fighting Falcon pilots a chance to hone their capabilities.

Red Flag allows Airmen to experience a combat environment with simulated opposing aircraft. Green Flag provides pilots with the opportunity to interact with ground forces as well as provide close air support and eliminate systems that may prevent troop movement. Checkered Flag and Combat Archer focus on the integration of three fighter squadrons’ ability to perform as a large-scale total force.

“The briefing is intended to show the base populous why we fly the suppression of enemy air defenses mission, why it’s important and why we go on temporary duty assignments to build on those skills and others that may be needed downrange,” said Capt. Taylor Roach, 55th FS flight commander.

The exercises occur periodically throughout the year and provide Airmen with the experience needed to be successful when called to deploy.

“We knew that there was a gap in information about peoples’ understanding of the training (pilots) go on,” said Jane Allen, 20th Mission Support Group director of installations. “The strategic nature and how we support these exercises as a wing and as a nation is the most important takeaway from today’s event.”

By providing Team Shaw members with a bigger picture of how the various exercises can improve readiness for fighter squadrons, attendees left the brief with a better understanding of what the trainings do to better prepare Airmen for future deployments.