Wednesday, September 30, 2009

US Airpower Summary, Sept. 30, 2009: F-15Es Strike Enemy

An F-15E Strike Eagle deploys flares during a mission over Afghanistan. The F-15E provides close-air support and armed overwatch in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Aaron Allmon.)

Dispatches from the Front:

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Sept. 30, 2009 -- Coalition airpower integrated with ground forces in Iraq and the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan during operations Sept. 29, according to Combined Air and Space Operations Center officials here.

In Afghanistan, coalition aircraft responded to a request for assistance in the Surkhabad area. A show of force was requested and successfully performed.

Asadabad saw Air Force F-15E Strike Eagles providing overwatch for a friendly forces' foot patrol. The patrol observed an enemy position and requested air support. Target coordinates were passed and precision-guided munitions deployed on the target destroying the enemy position.

At Chaghcharan Navy F/A-18F Super Hornets were providing armed overwatch for friendly forces on patrol. The patrol sent a request for support when they came under attack. Aircrews executed several strafing runs and then released a precision-guided munition to clear the way for the friendly patrol. The aerial strikes were successful in stopping the enemy fire and allowing the patrol to continue.

Navy F/A-18 Hornets were in the vicinity of Chahar Bagh providing armed overwatch for friendly forces. A request for a show of force was issued when friendly forces observed several suspicious personnel near the route of a coalition forces' truck convoy. The shows of force were conducted and declared successful by a joint terminal attack controller when the coalition force convoy passed by unimpeded.

At Sheykhabad, an MQ-1 Predator was assisting friendly ground forces in their search for improvised explosive devices and related activity. The ground forces detected a suspected IED and requested support. A missile was fired on the coordinates given and the potential threat was eliminated.

In Iraq, Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons were in action at Tall Afar and Mosul providing overwatch for friendly forces. The aircraft provided preemptive shows of force for a coalition force convoy and personnel conducting searches for improvised explosive devices. The shows of force were successful in deterring enemy action.

In total, 82 close-air-support missions were flown in support of the ISAF and Afghan security forces, reconstruction activities and route patrols.

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

In total, 24 close-air-support missions were flown in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. These missions integrated and synchronized with ground forces, protected key infrastructure, provided overwatch for reconstruction activities, and helped to deter and disrupt hostile activities

Thirty 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.

Air Force airlift crews flew 149 airlift sorties, 367 short tons of cargo were delivered and about 4,000 passengers were transported. This included about 165,000 pounds of aerial resupply cargo dropped over Afghanistan.

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

On Sept. 28, Air Force HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopters and pararescue teams transported nine patients to coalition field hospitals from locations in Afghanistan. Pararescue team members aboard located, rescued and began treatment to stabilize patients in the battlefield. The HH-60G aicrews 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 tanker crews flew 56 sorties and off-loaded approximately 3.4 million pounds of fuel to 241 receiving aircraft.

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

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