Once the proposed accretions fructify, the USAF force structure will, for the first time, have an equal numbers of squadrons for C2ISR and fighter aircraft (Figure 3). In the heavy aircraft category also, parity will be achieved between tankers and airlift aircraft for the first time. Special operations squadrons and space units will increase their share from current levels.
A close examination of force accretion planned over and above the existing inventory given in Figure 4 indicates that the current USAF dispensation feels an acute shortage of bombers, C2ISR and space assets for likely missions in the coming decade. The expansion plan increases their quantity by over 55 per cent. A major increase in C2ISR and space assets is indicative of an increased requirement to monitor a larger area for a longer duration and with multiple sensors. This kind of surveillance and reconnaissance has become a necessity owing to the changing character of war.