|Dylewski: Ready to Lead JTF-SWA Mission |
Dylewski: Ready to Lead JTF-SWA Mission
By Staff Sgt. Stacee McCausland, 320th Air Expeditionary Public Affairs.
Eskan Village, Southwest Asia -- April 18, 2001 (ACCNS) -- Even though he hasn’t been in country long enough to decorate his office, he’s still had enough time to focus on the mission requirements here and the people whose help he’ll need to accomplish those goals in the next year.
Brig. Gen. Gary R. Dylewski (left), new Joint Task Force-Southwest Asia commander, talks with people at Eskan Village (from left): Senior Airman Jessie Mendez and his K-9 partner Best, Airman 1st Class Chris Rines, Senior Airman Isaias Robles and Tech. Sgt. Matthew Barinotti.
Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Stacee McCausland
Brig. Gen. Gary R. Dylewski, Joint Task Force-Southwest Asia commander, assumed command April 5 and has been working diligently to keep the change as painless for the troops as possible.
As commander Dylewski leads a coalition of American, British and French forces to accomplish the Operation Southern Watch mission. That mission is to uphold U.N. Security Council resolutions 687, 688 and 949 through surveillance of Iraq below the 33rd parallel and to monitor
Iraqi compliance with the coalition-directed no-fly and no-drive zones.
"I would like to continue to do the mission that we’ve been assigned to do, while taking good care of our folks," said Dylewski. "Specifically, I would like to improve general quality of life issues throughout the (area of responsibility) at all the bases we’re responsible for. We need to get a feel for what can and needs to be done at all the places and make as many improvements as we can in the next 12 months. Trying to increase the future of operability among the countries in the AOR … is something we should consider also."
"We all should be really proud of the mission we do over here," said Dylewski. " I know it’s not easy to leave your families; but it’s important work, and we ought to be proud of the fact that we do it well."
However, the Erie, Penn., native doesn’t want time spent here to be all work and no play.
"We must try as hard as we can to not only do the job, but also to enjoy ourselves once in a while. Try to have some fun," said Dylewski. "There are so many things to take advantage of here. The opportunity to use this experience and maybe make some lifestyle changes, like in physical conditioning, is a wonderful thing."
Dylewski plans on taking advantage of some of the cultural opportunities available here. Because he’s not a stranger to temporary-duty assignments at Eskan Village or in the area of operations, he realizes there is more to do than adjust to the time zone.
"I would like to learn some more about Arabic culture, customs and history, which are all fascinating once you get into them" he said.
And now that Dylewski’s made it through numerous in-processing and informational briefings, he can prepare for the next step.
"I look forward to going around and meeting the troops where they work," he said.
And perhaps after doing that, he may tend to his bare-bones office. "I have a bunch of pictures from my old office that I plan on putting up soon," said Dylewski with a laugh.