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132d Wing activates new Cyberspace Operations Squadron

132d Wing

The 168th Cyber Operations Squadron poses for a photo prior to the Activation Ceremony of their squadron on November 5, 2017, 132d Wing, Des Moines, Iowa. The 168th COS was the third and last mission conversion to be activated since the F-16’s were re-tasked four years ago. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Katelyn Sprott)

132d Wing

Lt. Col. Lawrence Yazzie (right) assumes command of the 168th Cyber Operations Squadron from Col. Travis Crawmer during the Activation Ceremony on November 5, 2017, 132d Wing, Des Moines, Iowa. The 168th COS was the third and last mission conversion to be activated since the F-16’s were re-tasked four years ago. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Katelyn Sprott)

Des Moines, Iowa --

       

The 168th Cyberspace Operations Squadron was officially activated on Sunday, November 05, 2017 at the 132d Wing in Des Moines, Iowa.

 

Lt. Col.  Lawrence N. Yazzie accepted command and responsibility of the new squadron, which is the last of the three mission sets assigned to the wing to officially be stood up since the transition from the F-16 Fighting Falcon mission in 2013.

 

“We are preparing and providing defensive cyber operations to combat our sophisticated enemies,” said Yazzie during his acceptance speech. “The 168th Airmen have fully embraced the mission and the challenges ahead.”

 

While the 168th COS has just officially been stood up, it has already been executing its mission set including providing cyber defense for active duty units and training with Iowa’s state partner Kosovo for enhanced cyberspace protection.

 

“Due to the dedication and hard work of our Airmen, our Cyber Operations Squadron was able to mobilize and provide network security for our nation's air defenses; so this official recognition as the 168th is well deserved,” said Col. Shawn Ford, commander of the 132d Wing. “We are looking forward to many years of great contributions by this squadron to their nation, state, and community.”

 

The three primary missions of the 132d Wing following the transition from F-16s are MQ-9 Operations, Cyberspace Operations and Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance.