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Japan Air Self-Defense Force general visits AETC

  • Published
  • By Capt. Ashley Walker
  • Air Education and Training Command Public Affairs
The head of Japan Air Self-Defense Force Air Training Command visited Air Education and Training Command, Monday, May 12.

Lt. Gen. Masayuki Hironaka, commander of Air Training Command, was given an overview of AETC's mission and international training programs.

Hironaka and Gen. Robin Rand, commander of AETC, traded lessons learned regarding core values, resiliency, training challenges and combat readiness.

"Everything we do operationally in the Air Force, we introduced it or fully taught it in AETC," Rand said. "If push came to shove, our Airmen would be combat ready straight out of training. The way we do business has changed over the years to ensure our Airmen are mission ready."

Hironaka toured AETC Headquarters at JBSA-Randolph and visited Defense Language Institute English Language Center at JBSA-Lackland. While at DLIELC, Hironaka met with Japanese students.

The DLIELC programs introduce various cultures and trains international military personnel to communicate in English so they can instruct English language programs or become program managers in their country. DLIELC graduates approximately 2,800 students annually.

"It is an honor to showcase AETC to our valued partner nation," said George Gagnon, AETC director of international training and education. "Training alongside foreign nations bolsters understanding between the countries and ensures interoperability for future conflicts."

Hironaka also visited Japanese air force students attending pilot training at the 14th Flying Training Wing, Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi.

AETC's Air Force Security Assistance Training Squadron in conjunction with AETC's International Affairs Directorate, directs all U.S. Air Force-sponsored international training. AFSAT is responsible for managing this pilot training program. In fiscal year 2014, AETC trained approximately 70 international pilots.

"The Air Training Command has a similar mission in basic flying and technical training," Hironaka said. "We have had very productive discussions during my visit that are beneficial to all partners."