Thursday, April 16, 2009

US Airpower Summary, April 16, 2009: C-130s Deliver for Warfighters

A C-130 Hercules taxies at Joint Base Balad, Iraq, after an Operation Iraqi Freedom mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Tony R. Tolley.)

Dispatches from the Front:

SOUTHWEST ASIA, April 16, 2009 -- Coalition airpower integrated with coalition ground forces in Iraq and International Security Assistance Force troops in Afghanistan during operations April 15, according to Combined Air and Space Operations Center officials here.

In Afghanistan, an Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II dropped guided bomb unit-38s on several anti-Afghan force fighting positions after troops at a coalition forward base requested air support. The targets included enemy personnel gathering for an imminent attack against the base.

In the vicinity of Nangalam, an Air Force B-1B Lancer used GBU-38s to strike enemy targets. The strike took place against anti-Afghan personnel after they engaged coalition ground forces.

Near Bagram, a coalition observation post started taking rocket-propelled grenade and automatic-weapons fire, prompting an Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle to respond. The Strike Eagle performed a show of force and launched flares, bringing the enemy attack to an end.

A coalition aircraft executed a show of force near Lashkar Gah to disperse suspected enemy personnel at a probably ambush site. The individuals fled the area immediately after the show of force.

In the Musa Qala area, a coalition aircraft flew a show of force over a suspected enemy compound. The maneuver prevented enemy activity in the area, allowing coalition ground operations to continue without interference.

Joint terminal attack controllers assigned to coalition units verified the success of these missions.

In total, 62 close-air-support missions were flown in support of ISAF and Afghan security forces, reconstruction activities and route patrols.

Twenty-four Air Force intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions as part of operations in Afghanistan. In addition, two coalition aircraft performed tactical reconnaissance.

In Iraq, coalition aircraft flew 13 close-air-support missions for Operation Iraqi Freedom. These missions integrated and synchronized with coalition ground forces, protected key infrastructure, provided overwatch for reconstruction activities, and helped to deter and disrupt hostile activities.

Fourteen Air Force and Navy ISR aircraft flew missions as part of operations in Iraq. In addition, three Air Force and coalition aircraft performed tactical reconnaissance.

Air Force C-130 Hercules aircraft and C-17 Globemaster IIIs provided intra-theater heavy airlift, helping to sustain operations throughout Afghanistan, Iraq and the Horn of Africa.

Approximately 125 airlift sorties were flown, 450 tons of cargo were delivered and about 2,400 passengers were transported. Airlift included approximately 128,800 tons of aerial resupply dropped over Afghanistan.

Coalition C-130 crews flew as part of operations in Afghanistan or Iraq.

On April 14, Air Force aerial refueling crews flew 35 sorties and off-loaded approximately 2.3 million pounds of fuel to 178 receiving aircraft.

(Report from a U.S. Air Force news release.)

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