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Combat Art Articles

Mission Leaders; integrators, synchronizing our United States Air Force

  • Published

CSO Painting


Artist: Lt. Col. Warren Neary
Medium: Oil on linen
Date: 2022

Born out of the breadth of aviation from the Aerial Observers of World War I, the Bombardiers and Navigators of World War II, the Electronic Warfare Officers, Weapon Systems Officers, and Special Operators of Vietnam onward, to the Combat Systems Officers of the modern era; the Combat Systems Officer owns the rich heritage and diversity of those which came before them.

Combat Systems Officers or commonly referred to as CSOs, are the United States Air Force’s integrators of electromagnetic spectrum, sensor, and weapon operations. Humans-on-the-Loop synchronizing diverse technologies; ingrained with the inherent skills to find, target, and attack from the air above. CSOs are the eyes and ears in the sky of their fellow Airmen and joint service military members. Leaders with extraordinary abilities to abstract environmental information and apply high-tech systems on the increasingly complex battlefields of today and the future.

Charged with the mission of developing the “World’s best Combat Systems Officers,” the 479th Flying Training Group graduates over 300 Combat Systems Officers annually, providing the United States Air Force with the next generation of combat aviators and leaders. Air Force Reserve Command supports this important mission with instructors and Reserve Citizen Airmen as students receive outstanding training along with active duty members in this critical mission.