By Buddy Blouin
Artillery has been used throughout history for many different purposes, but most of them revolved around sieging cities and defending against knights on horseback until modern times. Now, we find many different uses for this important component of warfare including air defense. The air defense artillery used by the United States Armed Forces provides troops on the battlefield and civilians with protection and can draw enemy fire to assist with unit movement. From C-RAM systems to THAAD and others, the American military is prepared to neutralize aerial threats before they can ever hit their targets.

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What Is Air Defense Artillery?

Air defense artillery is an umbrella term for various anti-aircraft systems used to defend against various forms of enemy artillery fire. This includes missiles, mortars, artillery shells, rockets, guided weapons, and even enemy aircraft. The different weapons that the U.S. may use include a C-RAM gun, THAAD missiles, the Patriot Missile System, and more. The Air Defense Artillery Branch is a branch of the U.S. Army that specializes in protecting American forces/civilians and its allies. This branch will also assist in helping troops move throughout the battlefield and plays a heavy role in keeping people and locations secure in modern warfare. Those who serve in the Air Defense Artillery Branch are responsible for dealing with potential threats from all over the world. There are troops stationed for defense artillery ranging everywhere from Germany to Japan and even throughout the United States itself. The United States also helps with air defense as part of its duties as a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). It has also helped replenish other member nations with appropriate air defense artillery equipment to maintain defensive strength in their region. Even non-member nations have benefited from such agreements as the U.S. has even replenished the defense systems of NATO members that have gone on to donate the equipment to other nations in need, like Ukraine.

What Does an Air Defense Artillery Officer Do?

Air Defense Artillery (ADA) Officers are critical leaders in the U.S. Army National Guard. While serving, you’ll be tasked with using complex computers, radar, and other technology to warn, detect, and protect against aerial attacks and surveillance. Training is conducted at the United States Army Air Defense Artillery School at Fort Sill.

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When incoming threats are arising, the U.S. Army is there with no time to waste. Attacks are becoming more sophisticated, faster, and deadlier with each passing day. Recently, we’ve seen advanced devices using decoys designed to fool air defense artillery systems, a sharp focus on hypersonic missiles, and continued interest in nuclear weapons from many different factions around the world. The goal of ADA Officers and those serving around them is to find these threats and neutralize them before they reach their target. On the battlefield, such roles are also often expanded in modern warfare to draw fire while other troops can maneuver to complete their objectives. Overall, the U.S. Army Air Defense Artillery assists with intel, defense, and assisting offensives however necessary.

Air Defense Artillery Association Helps Current and Former Troops

Those who choose to live by the motto of “First to Fire” declared by the U.S. Air Defense Artillery Branch are set to lead the life of a protector and a hero. But even heroes can use support, which is exactly where the Air Defense Artillery Association (ADAA) comes in. Today, the ADAA is headquartered in Fort Sill, Oklahoma, as is the Air Defense Artillery Branch. It is continuing its mission of spreading the word of what the branch does to keep Americans safe as well as providing a variety of resources for both active service members and Veterans alike. The ADAA provides support for the Air Defense Artillery Branch of the Army and their families while preserving the importance of the branch’s history. There are scholarships, fundraisers, events, awards, merch, and much more available through the ADAA. For anyone involved in air defense artillery, the ADAA is a great place to connect with resources that can help you or a loved one. Read Next: Tips For Sending the Ultimate Military Care Packages



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