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AR Nat'l Guard to shift to drones

The Fort Smith-based fighter wing of the Arkansas National Guard will shift from fighter planes to drones next year.
FORT SMITH, AR - The Fort Smith-based fighter wing of the Arkansas National Guard will shift from fighter planes to drones next year.

A release from the Arkansas National Guard says that the Air Force proposal to re-structure the force includes the 188th Fighter Wing’s transition from the A-10 Thunderbolt II to remotely piloted aircraft. The change is to happen in fiscal year 2013.

“Undoubtedly some of our Airmen may be disappointed by the announcement, but what is important now is that we remain focused and maintain force structure, readiness and professionalism of the Guard to meet the future needs of the state and nation,” said Maj. Gen. William D. Wofford, the adjutant general of Arkansas.

The 188th currently has approximately 1,000 airmen, with a full-time staff of approximately 350 and 21 A-10 planes.

Lt. Col. Keith Moore says changes in  manpower have not been announced by the Department of Defense at this time.
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