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Fri, Apr 27, 2007

Airpower Summary Lists Diverse Aircraft Operations Over Iraq, Afghanistan

A-10s, Other Aircraft Give Commanders Options For Dealing With Insurgents

Coalition airpower supported coalition ground forces in Iraq and International Security Assistance Force troops in Afghanistan in the following operations April 25, officials with the Combined Air and Space Operations Center in southwest Asia tell ANN.

In Afghanistan, F-15E Strike Eagles released multiple guided bomb unit-31s on caves during a pre-planned strike near Khowst. The caves were known to have been used as ambush and indirect-fire locations and for logistics storage. Weapons from both aircraft collapsed the targeted cave entrances according to an on-scene joint terminal attack controller.

Near Kajaki Dam, a B1-B Lancer dropped GBU-31s on enemy positions where insurgents were firing on coalition forces. The bombs impacted the desired targets and were direct hits with good effects according to a JTAC.

Coalition ground forces began leaving the area after the strike and were fired upon by insurgents along a ridgeline. The ground commander requested his JTAC call in the B1-B to drop GBU-31s along the ridge line. The bombs impacted the desired targets and were called direct hits by the JTAC. The B1-Bs also provided a show of presence for coalition forces headed to a forward operating base near the same area.

Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt IIs provided reconnaissance for coalition forces near a ridgeline close to Gereshk.

US Navy F/A-18 Super Hornets dropped a GBU-38 and a GBU-12 on insurgents on a mountain side near Gereshk. A JTAC confirmed the weapons hit the desired target.

Also near Gereshik, other F/A-18s dropped GBU-38s and GBU-12s on insurgents. A JTAC confirmed the weapons hit the desired target.

Another F/A-18 dropped a GBU-38 on insurgents in an open area near Malek Din. A JTAC confirmed weapon hit the desired target.

In total, 43 close-air-support missions were flown in support of ISAF and Afghan security forces, reconstruction activities and route patrols.

Eleven Air Force intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions in support of operations in Afghanistan. Additionally, two Navy aircraft performed tactical reconnaissance.

In Iraq, Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons provided overwatch for coalition forces near Samarra. The pilots then searched for improvised explosive devices in the area.

Other F-16s performed armed reconnaissance for coalition forces raiding two buildings near Baghdad. The pilots also provided overwatch for a coalition convoy that received small-arms fire in the same area. The enemy fire ceased after the arrival of the F-16s.

Near Bayji, the F-16s provided overwatch for a coalition vehicle that struck an IED. No further attacks were reported. The pilots also provided overwatch for a nearby coalition raid.

Air Force A-10s provided a show of force, releasing multiple flares to deter attacks against coalition and Iraqi forces conducting a cordon search operation near Baghdad. The pilots then searched for mortar positions in the area.

In total, coalition aircraft flew 51 close-air-support missions for Operation Iraqi Freedom. These missions supported coalition ground forces, protected key infrastructure, watched over reconstruction activities and helped to deter and disrupt terrorist activities.

Fourteen Air Force and Navy ISR aircraft flew missions in support of operations in Iraq. Additionally, three Air Force and Royal Air Force fighter aircraft performed tactical reconnaissance.

Air Force C-130 Hercules aircraft and C-17 Globemaster IIIs provided intra-theater heavy airlift support, helping to sustain operations throughout Afghanistan, Iraq and the Horn of Africa. More than 120 airlift sorties were flown; nearly 600 tons of cargo were delivered, and approximately 1,615 passengers were transported. This included about 12,000 pounds of troop re-supply air-dropped in Afghanistan.

Coalition C-130 crews from Australia, Canada, Iraq and South Korea flew in support of OIF or OEF.

On April 24, Air Force, French and RAF tankers flew 45 sorties and off-loaded more than 2.6 million pounds of fuel.

FMI: www.af.mil

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