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This report discusses (1) optional ways of enhancing present and future strategic airlift forces; (2) airlift options being considered by the Air Force; (3) critical uncertainties, including the appropriate mix of outsize and oversize capacity; and (4) an incremental strategy for assessing future commitments. The authors recommend further analysis of C-5A wing problems, accelerated acquisition of spares to support higher surge ratios, resolution of some persistent CRAF difficulties, and a prompt start on work needed to support the procurement of additional outsize airlift capacity. Other important issues extend to (1) exploring with the Army ways to reduce airlift equipment lists and the feasibility of partial prepositioning of heavy but low cost items, (2) clarifying uncertainties in the C-141A stretch program, and (3) the implications of increasing crew utilization rates. The goal of such initiatives is to give the Air Force a better base for evaluating long-term airlift enhancement needs and opportunities.

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