NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. — Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall on Monday used his first public speech to send a message to Congress: The aircraft in your district are not exempt from the retirements the Air Force must do to free up funds for next-generation planes, drones and weapons.
“I have one request of the Congress: help us to focus on the one fight — the strategic competitive fight — we must win,” Kendall said during a speech at the Air Force Association’s Air, Space and Cyber conference.
“We will not succeed against a well-resourced and strategic competitor if we insist on keeping every legacy system we have,” he said. “Our one team cannot win its one fight to deter China or Russia without the resources we need and a willingness to balance risk today to avoid much greater risk in the future.”
“I do understand the political constraints here, and I’m happy to work with Congress to find a better mechanism to make the changes we need, but we must move forward,” Kendall added.
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