PRINCE SULTAN AIR BASE, SAUDI ARABIA –
At Prince Sultan Air Base one uniform dawns all that stand sentry at the U.S. gates. Where American Airmen and Soldiers defend side by side united under one flag and distinguished only by their emblems and some thread.
Watching the air from windowless towers and patrolling the land in steel packs. The 378th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron and the 1-182nd Infantry Regiment‘s Task Force Americal mark the divide between AFCENT and ARCENT, yet among them three factions blend indistinguishably together in PSAB’s shield.
Active-duty members and reservists within the 378th ESFS work beside TF Americal’s Massachusetts guardsmen completing the trifecta of PSAB’s Total Force protection.
“We have Air Force reservists and Army guardsmen integrated into every security force function here on PSAB but you wouldn’t be able to discern them from the active-duty members,” said Chief Master Sgt. Joseph Kimbrough, the 378th ESFS’s senior enlisted leader. “They’ve been an integral part of the team charged with defending the base and ensuring the mission is executed freely and openly.”
Within the ranks, a variety of Reserve Citizen Airmen wear the 378th ESFS’s crest. The standing majority among them are 307th Security Forces Squadron Defenders, deployed to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia from Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana.
“Reservists often bring a different level of maturity, training, experience and/or overall professionalism from their day-to-day jobs in the private sector,” said Kimbrough. “In fact, several of our Barksdale members are in a leadership capacity over very important missions.”
Two among them are Tech. Sgt. Martha Unzueta and Staff Sgt. Zavian Wilburn. Unzueta is a watch officer over the C-sUAS team responsible for operating several air defense command and control systems to counter unmanned aerial system threats. Wilburn is the team leader of a quick reaction force that provides immediate armed response in armored vehicles to U.S.-controlled areas and any incidents involving Americans within the confines of PSAB.
“Those mission sets are extremely important based on threats that we may see while deployed,” said Kimbrough. “We’re relying on them to lead our Airmen and Soldiers, whether active, reserve or guard, in protecting PSAB.”
The 378th ESFS and TF Americal protect Joint Force war-fighting resources essential to both Ninth Air Force and Third Army operational readiness in the Southwest Asia Theatre.
Under one flag, two crests in a three mix-faction formation, PSAB’s Total Force defends USCENTCOM’s sole castle in the KSA, from which it projects air and land power in the deterrence of aggressors against the regional security of its area of responsibility