Saturday, July 18, 2009

US Airpower Summary, July 18, 2009: B-1Bs Strike Enemy Forces

A B-1B Lancer departs on a mission. The B-1B can deliver massive quantities of precision and non-precision weapons rapidly against any adversary, anywhere in the world, at any time. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. David Miller.)

Dispatches from the Front:

SOUTHWEST ASIA, July 18, 2009 -- Coalition airpower integrated with coalition ground forces in Iraq and International Security Assistance Force troops in Afghanistan during operations July 17, according to Combined Air and Space Operations Center officials here.

Near Surkhabad, Air Force F-15E Strike Eagles and B-1B Lancers released numerous guided bomb unit-31s and 38s on enemy positions. Enemy forces at these positions were directing small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades on friendly forces. All weapons fire from the enemy positions ceased upon impact of the bombs. This action eliminated any possible imminent threat to friendly forces and civilian forces.

At Asadabad, Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt IIs and F-15Es rolled in to provide cover for friendly forces taking RPG and small-arms fire. Numerous strafing runs, several GBU-38s and MK-82 general purpose bombs destroyed the enemy position eliminating the threat to friendly forces.

Air Force B-1B Lancers at Sangin rolled in to provide cover for friendly forces taking RPG and small-arms fire. During this skirmish, there were shows of force and numerous flares expended causing the enemy to stop the attack on friendly forces.

Asmar saw F-15Es during the day as they destroyed several enemy positions that had been firing RPGs and small arms on coalition and friendly forces. This was accomplished with the release of several GBU-38s on the enemy positions. Armed overwatch was provided for several more hours.

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

Twenty-four Air Force intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions as part of operations in Afghanistan.

In total, 60 close-air-support missions were flown in support of ISAF and Afghan security forces, reconstruction activities and route patrols.

In Iraq, coalition aircraft flew 24 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-four 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 149 airlift sorties were flown, 1,133 tons of cargo were delivered and about 3,540 passengers were transported. Airlift included about 164,300 pounds of aerial resupply cargo dropped over Afghanistan.

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

On July 16, Air Force HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopters and "Guardian Angel" teams transported eight patients to coalition field hospitals from locations in Afghanistan. Pararescue team members aboard the helicopters located, rescued and began treatment to stabilize patients in the battlefield. The HH-60Gs transported these patients to field hospitals in less time than it takes for a civilian patient to reach emergency care by ambulance in most major cities.

Air Force aerial refueling crews flew 52 sorties and off-loaded approximately 2.95 million pounds of fuel to 242 receiving aircraft.

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

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