Air National Guard
After World War I, despite War Department opposition, Guard aviation was placed on a permanent footing. The army organized twenty‐nine Guard observation squadrons during the interwar period. Those units, with 4,800 experienced personnel, were mobilized in 1940–41. Although many remained intact, they lost the majority of their personnel to other units of the Army Air Forces (AAF) during World War II, when Guard aviators served in every operational theater.
A reluctant AAF was compelled by political pressure from National Guard interests to develop a dual‐component postwar reserve system consisting of the ANG, a force with federal and state roles, and the Air Force Reserve (AFRES), an organization with a strictly federal role. At first, the ANG was little more than a poorly trained and equipped flying club.
The Korean War (1950–53) proved a turning point for the ANG. Some 45,000 Air Guard personnel, 80 percent of the force, were called into federal service, but they were unprepared for combat. Eventually, ANG units and individual Guardsmen contributed substantially in the air war in Korea and the USAF's global buildup. Mobilization problems and political controversy forced the USAF to revamp its reserve programs. In 1951, the USAF included the ANG in its war plans. Two years later, ANG units began augmenting the nation's air defense runway alert forces. That program integrated training and operational support of the USAF by the ANG on a daily basis. The innovation served as a precursor for the Total Force policy implemented in 1973 by the Department of Defense.
ANG units gradually improved their readiness after the Korean War and were integrated into a widening circle of planning activities, exercises, and operational missions. The ANG became a mixed force of fighters, airlifters, tankers, and support units.
Mobilization performance continued to improve in the Berlin crisis (1961) and the USS Pueblo and Tet Offensive crises (1968). From 1967 to 1977, ANG volunteers operated a tanker task force in Europe on a continuous basis, foreshadowing the extensive use of reserve forces abroad in a nonmobilized status. During the 1970s, significant numbers of women and minorities began to enter the ANG, and with the draft's end in 1973, it became an All‐Volunteer Force. The ANG evolved into a well‐equipped force capable of rapid global deployment. During the Persian Gulf crisis (1990–91), over 12,000 Air Guard members performed ably. Since then, the ANG has assumed a growing share of the USAF's missions.
[See also Militia and National Guard.]
Charles J. Gross , The Air National Guard and the Persian Gulf Crisis: From Shield to Storm, 1995.
Charles J. Gross , Militiaman, Volunteer, and Professional; The Air National Guard and the American Military Tradition, 1996.
Charles J. Gross
"Air National Guard." The Oxford Companion to American Military History. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 16, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/air-national-guard
"Air National Guard." The Oxford Companion to American Military History. . Retrieved August 16, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/air-national-guard
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.