Army paratroopers assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division prepare to board an Air Force C-17 at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, Aug. 30, 2021

Army paratroopers assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division prepare to board an Air Force C-17 at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, Aug. 30, 2021 Army Master Sgt. Alexander Burnett

The Air & Space Brief: Data to fight wildfires, military dog airlift, software chief quits...

Welcome to the Defense One Air and Space newsletter. Here are our top stories of the week: 

Dogs flown from Kabul: Pentagon officials want to be very clear: The U.S. military did not leave any of its working dogs behind. Viral photos purporting to show military dogs locked in cages at Hamid Karzai International Airport drew anger from animal rights groups—but the animals were rescues that a private organization could not get out of Kabul, not military working dogs. 

Software chief quits: The Air Force’s first-ever chief software officer, Nicolas Chaillan, is leaving his post, and he listed the reasons why in a blunt letter he posted Thursday. Those reasons include wanting to be more present for his children and family, but also a lack of support from senior Pentagon and Air Force senior leaders, he wrote.

Kabul airlift in 5 charts: In just 15 days, the Air Force executed the largest airlift rescue mission in history. Defense One’s Libby Howe has captured that effort in five telling graphics, here. 

Fire-fighting satellites: The Pentagon is extending its “Firefly” program, which uses satellite data to help fight wildfires, Space News reported Monday. The program was launched under the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency in 2019 and provides updated maps every 15 minutes to help track and combat rapidly spreading wildfires.  

Sign up to get The Air & Space Brief every Tuesday from Tara Copp, Defense One’s Senior Pentagon Reporter. On September 8, 1960, the Office of Naval Research reported that it had received radio signals from Saturn, but they were later found to have occurred naturally. 


From Defense One

No US Military Dogs Were Left Behind in Afghanistan, DOD Says // Elizabeth Howe: Pentagon officials say the caged dogs in viral photos aren’t military working dogs, all of which were evacuated.

US Air Force’s First Software Chief Steps Down // Brandi Vincent: Nicolas Chaillan, who led a Pentagon-wide DevSecOps effort, said he was leaving in part because of a lack of support from senior leaders.

The Kabul Airlift in 5 Charts // Elizabeth Howe: The largest emergency airlift ever handled by the U.S. military started slowly and built to a torrent.

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