Remembering the Airman's Creed
By CMSgt. James Miller, 127th CPTF
/ Published March 18, 2013
SELFRIDGE AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Mich. --
I am an American Airman.
I am a warrior.
I have answered my nation's call.
These are the words that begin the Airman's Creed. The Airman's Creed is meant to invigorate the warrior ethos in those of us who have chosen to wear the blue suit.
Since its inception in 2007 the Airman's Creed has received mixed reviews from Airmen across the service and it seems that only recently we at Selfridge have begun to embrace it and recite it at the many councils and formal meetings that we attend.
To understand why it is important to be able to recite the Airman's Creed we must first understand why it was conceived. When Gen. T. Michael Moseley, former Air Force Chief of Staff introduced the Creed on April 18, 2007 (the 65th anniversary of the Doolittle Raiders' historic strike at the heart of Imperial Japan), he wrote in an introduction letter that one of his top priorities was to "reinvigorate the warrior ethos in every Airman of our Total Force." He went on to say "Our new Airman's Creed reminds us all of the incredible combat heritage we have as Airmen." "We're a combatant Air Force; our mission is to fly, fight, and win our nation's wars."
I believe the Airman's Creed is important for three reasons. First, I believe the Airman's Creed gives us a foundation of what we as an organization believe and that it clearly presents the standard our members must hold themselves to. Second, I believe it articulates the level of commitment we must have in defending our great nation and the principles it stands on. How many other professions require that you must be willing to give up your life to meet their objective? Finally, I believe the Airman's Creed truly encompasses words to live by and that it is much more than just words. I believe we should feel the importance of what the Airman's Creed embodies. To do this we must learn it and fully understand it. Being able to recite it helps to demonstrate how important it is to us.
To memorize something like the Airman's Creed you have to read it over and over repeating the words and committing them to memory. At some point, you probably begin to start thinking about what the words mean as you say them. Perhaps you begin to internalize the words and think about how they apply to you and your Air Force experiences.
If you're like me, the words soon take on a more personal meaning as you realize just how enormous the commitment you have made to defending freedom really is. I've discovered that the more I recite the Airman's Creed the prouder and more connected to that warrior ethos I become. While I don't often feel like a warrior as I'm working something routine on my computer my level of commitment to protecting the U. S. Constitution -- and freedom in general -- is no less than those who serve at "the tip of the spear." I believe it's at this level that we come to understand just how important the Creed is and how it simply and concisely puts into words the warfighting spirit that exists in all of us. I've realized that the Airman's Creed really encapsulates what it means to be an Airman, to have pride in service and to feel a connection to our proud heritage.
I believe the Airman's Creed reflects our pride in our role in air, space, and cyberspace power and our Air Force's commitment in supporting and defending the nation. I believe the Airman's Creed reminds us of our warfighting-focused culture, conviction, character, ethic, spirit and soul that we as Airman all possess.
I believe the Airman's Creed is a tangible statement of our beliefs that lets us feel pride in this great profession we have chosen.
I urge you to learn the Airman's Creed and feel the pride many of us feel in being able to recite it while thinking about it is as so much more than merely the words that make it up.