HomeNewsArticle Display

451st ESFS, NATO partners defend heart of Kandahar Airfield

Airman 1st Class Chris Spore raises an entry control barrier for a crew to enter the flightline, Oct. 20, 2010, at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan.  Airman Spore, from Ocala, Fla., is a flightline security patrolman with the 451st Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Chad Chisholm/Released)

Airman 1st Class Chris Spore raises an entry control barrier for a crew to enter the flightline, Oct. 20, 2010, at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan. Airman Spore, from Ocala, Fla., is a flightline security patrolman with the 451st Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Chad Chisholm/Released)

KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan -- Kandahar Airfield's most valuable asset: people. Some of these valued people help protect another vital asset on this Afghanistan base: the $40 billion worth of aircraft and equipment on the flightline, the heart of the airfield.

With more than 5,000 aircraft movements on a weekly basis to support operations throughout Afghanistan, the flightline security Airmen and their NATO partners have their work cut out for them by making sure those operations continue seamlessly without being threatened.

"It's a big responsibility," said Staff Sgt. Steven Robinson, 451st Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron flightline security controller. "We don't take our job lightly and we never get complacent."

The flightline security members are responsible for dispatching patrols to flightline incidents and providing security for everything from medical evacuations to distinguished visitors or dignified remains transfers. They also man entry control points for the flightline by ensuring only authorized personnel with proper identification enter and exit the controlled area.

"It's always busy here because there's always something out of the ordinary that comes up ... I keep in contact with our patrols to make sure we can respond quickly," said Sergeant Robinson, who hails from Atlanta. "Without us protecting the flightline assets, the mission won't get done because we have people flying in and out of here every day."

With being in a deployed environment, these Airmen also respond to indirect fire attacks on the flightline, clearing and cordoning areas when necessary. The flightline security crew is also constantly providing mobile patrol units around the flightline, ensuring they're ready to respond at a moment's notice anywhere in the airfield.

"Mobile patrols are my favorite part," said Airman 1st Class Chris Spore, 451st ESFS flightline security patrolman, as he manned one of the entry control points. "I get to see a lot of different things when we're riding around, but here I just see the same people coming in and out every day. This flightline is the main line into the base, so we're a very important resource."

The 451st ESFS makes up a portion of the 75-member Commander of KAF Flightline Security team, which they support jointly with their NATO counterparts from Canada, Belgium and Australia.

"I like working with all the people," said Sergeant Robinson, who said this was his first time deploying with foreign forces. "I like getting to learn their ways and learning about their cultures. They do things a little differently and they handle things very directly."

His Australian counterpart had similar things to say about working with the American Airmen.

"Things are good here and there are a lot of great opportunities to work with the guys," said Royal Australian Air Force Sgt. Mark Rankin, COMKAF Flightline Security flight chief. "There's not a massive learning curve because there's not a lot of difference in how we do things. It's great working with them."

No matter the country, language, or which patterned uniform they wear, these Airmen and their NATO partners come together for a common mission: protecting and defending the heart of KAF, the flightline.
USAF Comments Policy
If you wish to comment, use the text box below. AF reserves the right to modify this policy at any time.

This is a moderated forum. That means all comments will be reviewed before posting. In addition, we expect that participants will treat each other, as well as our agency and our employees, with respect. We will not post comments that contain abusive or vulgar language, spam, hate speech, personal attacks, violate EEO policy, are offensive to other or similar content. We will not post comments that are spam, are clearly "off topic", promote services or products, infringe copyright protected material, or contain any links that don't contribute to the discussion. Comments that make unsupported accusations will also not be posted. The AF and the AF alone will make a determination as to which comments will be posted. Any references to commercial entities, products, services, or other non-governmental organizations or individuals that remain on the site are provided solely for the information of individuals using this page. These references are not intended to reflect the opinion of the AF, DoD, the United States, or its officers or employees concerning the significance, priority, or importance to be given the referenced entity, product, service, or organization. Such references are not an official or personal endorsement of any product, person, or service, and may not be quoted or reproduced for the purpose of stating or implying AF endorsement or approval of any product, person, or service.

Any comments that report criminal activity including: suicidal behaviour or sexual assault will be reported to appropriate authorities including OSI. This forum is not:

  • This forum is not to be used to report criminal activity. If you have information for law enforcement, please contact OSI or your local police agency.
  • Do not submit unsolicited proposals, or other business ideas or inquiries to this forum. This site is not to be used for contracting or commercial business.
  • This forum may not be used for the submission of any claim, demand, informal or formal complaint, or any other form of legal and/or administrative notice or process, or for the exhaustion of any legal and/or administrative remedy.

AF does not guarantee or warrant that any information posted by individuals on this forum is correct, and disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from reliance on any such information. AF may not be able to verify, does not warrant or guarantee, and assumes no liability for anything posted on this website by any other person. AF does not endorse, support or otherwise promote any private or commercial entity or the information, products or services contained on those websites that may be reached through links on our website.

Members of the media are asked to send questions to the public affairs through their normal channels and to refrain from submitting questions here as comments. Reporter questions will not be posted. We recognize that the Web is a 24/7 medium, and your comments are welcome at any time. However, given the need to manage federal resources, moderating and posting of comments will occur during regular business hours Monday through Friday. Comments submitted after hours or on weekends will be read and posted as early as possible; in most cases, this means the next business day.

For the benefit of robust discussion, we ask that comments remain "on-topic." This means that comments will be posted only as it relates to the topic that is being discussed within the blog post. The views expressed on the site by non-federal commentators do not necessarily reflect the official views of the AF or the Federal Government.

To protect your own privacy and the privacy of others, please do not include personally identifiable information, such as name, Social Security number, DoD ID number, OSI Case number, phone numbers or email addresses in the body of your comment. If you do voluntarily include personally identifiable information in your comment, such as your name, that comment may or may not be posted on the page. If your comment is posted, your name will not be redacted or removed. In no circumstances will comments be posted that contain Social Security numbers, DoD ID numbers, OSI case numbers, addresses, email address or phone numbers. The default for the posting of comments is "anonymous", but if you opt not to, any information, including your login name, may be displayed on our site.

Thank you for taking the time to read this comment policy. We encourage your participation in our discussion and look forward to an active exchange of ideas.