5th AF vice commander visits Misawa AB

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class China M. Shock
  • 35th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Brig. Gen. Leonard J. Kosinski, the 5th Air Force vice commander, and Chief Master Sgt. Kathleen McCool, the 5th AF command chief, wrapped up their visit to Misawa Air Base, Japan, Nov. 24, 2020.

During their two-day visit, Kosinski and McCool received mission briefs from various 35th Fighter Wing units and agencies, had the opportunity to meet and interact with Airmen, and learn about the various roles Team Misawa members play to keep their community safe.

“It was amazing to see the teamwork and excellence of the Wild Weasels at Misawa Air Base first hand,” said Kosinski. “The Airmen of the 35th Fighter Wing do an outstanding job at supporting peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific theater, and it is an honor to serve alongside them as the vice commander of 5th Air Force. Misawa Air Base members have a key role in continuing commitment to the U.S.-Japan alliance, and I have great confidence in that bilateral partnership.”

As part of learning about the daily operations at Misawa Air Base, Kosinski and McCool visited the 35th Civil Engineer Squadron to view a snow removal demonstration.

“It’s important for us to be immersed in the missions of our wings,” McCool said. "To support the Airmen’s success and to understand these challenges, we like to get hands on with what their day-to-day mission is like. Things like the “snow rodeo” really provide us that opportunity. We can then take these experiences and observations to further innovation throughout the command.”

The 5th AF team also visited the 13th and 14th Fighter Squadrons, where they received briefs about the various mission sets including the suppression of enemy air defenses, or SEAD.

SEAD missions allow other aircraft the ability to put bombs on target. As the only SEAD wing in the Pacific Air Forces' area of responsibility, the 35th FW owns this unique mission set which ensures all other aircraft are protected from surface-to-air missiles.

“Misawa Air Base serves as a crucial part of PACAF’s strategic and combat capabilities,” said Kosinski. “I believe without a doubt that this wing can meet the needs of any contingency operations that may arise.”