Origin of USAF wings

Origin Of USAF Wings

Origin of USAF wings

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In United States Air Force usage, a military organization above a squadron level (group, wing, division, command, air force) is an establishment, while that of a squadron and lower (squadron, flight, detachment) is a unit.

"The U.S. Army Air Service/U.S. Army Air Corps/U.S. Army Air Forces wings that existed before 1947 are not comparable with the wings of the USAF. World War II wings, for example, were very large administrative and operational organizations that usually controlled several combat groups and numerous service organizations, often located at widely scattered locations. Many of the World War II wings were redesignated as air divisions after the war. Modern wings, as we know them, began their existence with a service test of combat wings in 1947-1948. These wings were temporary Table of Distribution (T/D) organizations, each having a combat group (the only Table of Organization establishment of the wings), an airdrome group, a maintenance and supply group, and a station medical group. In 1948, at the end of the service test, HQ USAF replaced these T/D wings with permanent TO&E (constituted) combat wings having a combat group, an air base group, maintenance and supply group, and a medical group.

"Constituted combat wings are always numbered in a single series beginning with Arabic “1st.” Examples: 1st Fighter Wing, 21st Space Wing, and the Strategic Air Command's 509th Bomb Wing. All constituted wings have one, two, or three digits in their...
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