2nd Air Division
200th Composite Air Division
2nd Airlift Division (Provisional)
The Philippine Air Force's 2nd Air Division is Headquarters at Mactan-Benito Ebuen Air Base, Lapu-lapu City. Of the 3 PAF divisions, the 2nd Air Division was unique, in that it supported only one Area Command, Central Command (CENTCOM). CENTCOM conducted Internal Security Operations in the Visayas to defeat various militant organizations in order to establish a physically and psychologically secure environment conducive to development.
The mission of the 2nd Air Division, was to conduct Tactical Air Operations in support of Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) forces within the Visayas area. It was tasked with providing tactical air support to AFP ground and surface forces; conducting aerial reconnaissance, medical evacuation, disaster relief and rehabilitation, and combat and search and rescue operations; and conducting air activities in support of socio-economic, resource protection and other nation-building tasks of the government. Its mission also included developing, operating and maintaining base facilities and strategically located air bases/stations. The 2nd Air Division's specific operational capabilities included providing close air support and battlefield air interdiction; conducting troop and airborne and supply operations; performing airborne forward air control missions, conducting combat air patrol, air surveillance, reconnaissance, med evac, and rescue; participating in disaster relief and rehab operations; developing, operates and maintains strategic base facilities; conducting medium-lift operations; conducting Night Tactical Air Operations, med evac and search and rescue missions; conducting inter-operable mission through established ground-air-sea communications; and conduct SOT activities.
The 2nd Air Division traces its lineage back to 25 January 1970, when the 2nd Airlift Division (Provisional) was first organized and constituted as a component of the Philippine Air Force, pursuant to General Orders Number 130, Headquarters, Philippine Air Force, dated 25 January 1970. It was headquartered at Nichols Air Base (subsequently Colonel Jesus Villamor Air Base), Pasay City. On 23 November 1972, the Division was transferred to Sangley Point, Cavite City. On 1 July 1972 the unit was redesignated 200th Composite Air Division.
On 1 December 1975, the 200th CAD was redesignated 2nd Air Division pursuant to General Orders Number 167, Headquarters, Philippine Air Force, dated 12 December 1975. When the concept of geographical commands was adopted, the headquarters of 2nd Air Division was transferred from Sangley Point, Cavite City to Mactan Air Base, Lapulapu City, Cebu. This was to become the center for air operations in the Visayas and Palawan.
In April 1983, the 2nd Air Division was inactivated. The officers and airmen that manned the unit were reassigned to a newly organized unit, the Philippine Air Force Security Wing. On 12 October 1987, the 2nd Air Division was reactivated pursuant to General Orders Number 223, Headquarters, Philippine Air Force, dated 16 October 1987.
In line with the Philippine Air Force Modernization Program, the 2nd Air Division based in Mactan-Benito Ebuen Air Base, Lapulapu City was again deactivated on 15 October 1998 and subsequently, the Tactical Operations Command (TOC) was organized and activated. The Tactical Operations Command was envisioned to be a functional national command, which would orchestrate all tactical operations in the conduct of internal security operations of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
In August 2007 the Philippine Air Force experienced a major reorganization, which saw the reactivation of the 2nd Air Division. As of 2009 the 2nd Air Division consisted of the 560th Air Base Wing and Tactical Operations Groups 6 and 8. Under its operational control were the 208th Tactical Helicopter Squadron, an Advance Command Post of the 15th Strike Wing, the 723rd Special Operations Squadron, the 5052nd Search and Rescue Squadron, a rotating squadron of the 220th Airlift Wing, and the 5th Air Reserve Center. Operationally controlled units were subject to frequent rotation.
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