(6.) Maj Bruce Munger, director of operations, 20th Air Support Operations Squadron, and joint tactical air controller
instructor, Operation Iraqi Freedom, October 2007-April 2008, to the author, personal communication, 5 February 2008.
As Joint Tactical Air Controller
he would have called in air strikes to protect his base and Camp Dwyer behind it.
That was important to the tactical air controller
as he recovered from the burns that cover nearly 80 percent of his body.
Raytheon is marketing a wearable joint tactical air controller
system that allows ground forces to tag elements in the environment using a helmet-mounted monocle that covers the whole eye but is see-through.
The HAC turned toward the ship and directed the anti-submarine/anti-surface warfare tactical air controller
(ASTAC), over datalink, to set emergency flight quarters.
By design, an Air Force joint tactical air controller
was along to direct strike aircraft.
But the tactical air controller
does know that when he calls in a close air support strike, the jet fighters or bombers overhead--Air Force, Navy, Marine or a coalition partner--will drop their deadly "smart" bombs where he tells them.
"Equipped with ROVER, a joint tactical air controller
can see pictures gained by sensors mounted on unmanned aircraft, fighters and bombers," says the Rand report.
Out of a dozen engagements, he says, "We never had a qualified joint tactical air controller
on the ground; we never had JDAM-quality coordinates from the ground" The joint direct attack munition is a satellite-guided bomb that requires precise geo-coordinates to make it fly to the correct target.
Aviators from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (SOAR), also from Fort Campbell, and Air Force special operations personnel (Combat Tactical Air Controllers
) and AC-130s from Hurlburt Field, Florida, also were part of Task Force DAGGER.