I wanted to do something really
important. I think I was looking to be part of something that was bigger than
just myself. We’re kind of a cross between light infantry and military police. And
they call us the jack-of-all-trades because, you know, we pretty much do
everything. We don’t have just one job to do. You’re at a different spot
every day. A lot of it is watching a gate, guarding a flight line… You’re there for
a reason. At any moment something could happen, and you’re there. You are the
gateway to the Air Force and it’s your responsibility to end that threat or
handle whatever situation may come your way. We have very valuable assets on the
base including our planes, our weapons, our military personnel. It’s not just a
straight-leg cop. You can go CATM. You can go canine.
You can go Raven, which is aircraft security. You can go Dagger or Deployed
Aircraft Ground Response Element, which is Special Operations security for
Special Operations aircraft. If you go to a nuke base you have the Tactical
Response Force. There’s the Emergency Services Teams, or the ESTs, which are
basically a Security Forces SWAT team. So many different opportunities that you
can find at security forces. Working in investigations can consist of a day when
you’re interviewing a subject, interviewing a victim… We’re acting to an
incident arriving on scene somewhere, and keeping a cool head and being able to
talk to people will do more for this job than any other skill they can teach you. Military working dogs do both explosive and narcotics interdiction. Their keen
sense of smell is what sets them apart from everything. On a good day the dogs
can smell from a thousand yards out. Combat arms training and maintenance or
CATM basically are the ones who teach weapons to, not only security forces
members but, to the whole base populace. No matter where the Air Force sends you
it’s up to you to be motivated and finding the opportunities that may be at
your base. We’re cops, you know, we work the gate, we do law enforcement duties,
and then when we deploy, we could do anything from working just that base
security– that perimeter defense– to branching outside the wire and pulling
the Army’s missions. But when you’re deployed you get to see it firsthand. You get to
see the real reason why you’re joined, why you’re
important, and what you’re protecting. You need to find the “why.” Why are you going
to do this? What are you fighting for? If this is something that you really want
to do, it will be worth it. It’s really up to the individual to take advantage of
those opportunities. When I first came into the career field, I didn’t speak up for
myself. I was a little bit shy, a little bit of a pushover, and now I’m 100
percent confident. I’ve found a voice in Security Forces