Tuesday, June 2, 2009

US Airpower Summary, June 2, 2009: C-17s Support Coalition Forces

A C-17 Globemaster III, like this one, performs tactical airlift and airdrop missions, transports passengers and delivers troop supplies throughout Southwest Asia in support of operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Clark Staehle.)

Dispatches from the Front:

SOUTHWEST ASIA, June 2, 2009 -- Coalition airpower integrated with coalition ground forces in Iraq and International Security Assistance Force troops in Afghanistan during operations June 1, according to Combined Air and Space Operations Center officials here.

In Afghanistan, a Navy F/A-18C Hornet strafed an enemy compound in Lashkar Gah with its 20mm Vulcan cannon after an Afghan National Police convoy came under fire from anti-Afghan forces taking cover in the structure. The enemy personnel in the building had been launching rocket-propelled grenades and directing automatic fire at Afghani policemen until the strafes put a stop to it. Nearby, a coalition aircraft flew a show of force to cover the withdrawal of other Afghan security forces after a similar enemy attack.

Near Tarin Kowt, an Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle and A-10 Thunderbolt II conducted shows of force and launched flares to stop an enemy attack against a coalition forward base. The shooting stopped after the aircraft made their presence known, allowing base personnel to regroup and resume operations.

F-15E over Asadabad performed shows of force to halt an immediate threat against a friendly convoy. Enemy forces had been detected massing for an attack on the convoy, but the convoy was able to continue on under the F-15Es' protection.

A convoy passing through Ghazni was attacked by anti-Afghan forces personnel with an improvised explosive device, but sustained no damage or injuries. The unit called in an A-10 for a show of force to prevent the enemy from making a follow-on attack.

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

In total, 75 close-air-support missions were flown in support of ISAF and Afghan security forces, reconstruction activities and route patrols.

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

In Iraq, coalition aircraft flew 26 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.

Twenty-six Air Force and Navy ISR aircraft flew missions as part of operations in Iraq. In addition, two Air Force 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 150 airlift sorties were flown, 490 tons of cargo were delivered and about 3,000 passengers were transported. Airlift included about 147,400 pounds of aerial resupply cargo dropped over Afghanistan.

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

On May 31, Air Force aerial refueling crews flew 52 sorties and off-loaded approximately 3.1 million pounds of fuel to 220 receiving aircraft.

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

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