Home > Uncategorized > U.S. Air Force’s Bloody 100th: 100 Sorties In Support Of French War In Mali

U.S. Air Force’s Bloody 100th: 100 Sorties In Support Of French War In Mali

U.S. Air Forces in Europe
March 19, 2013

Bloody 100th flies 100th for French
By Capt. Jason Smith
100th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

130317-F-1110S-131
March 17: A French fighter aircraft prepares to refuel from a KC-135 Stratotanker over Africa

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“Without U.S. Air Force refueling support, the French air force would lose about 50 percent of their daily fighter sorties.”

The friendships and networking that have developed between the planners will help enhance French and U.S. military coordination for future operations.

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SOUTHWEST EUROPE: Airmen flying KC-135 Stratotankers from the 100th Air Refueling Wing, RAF Mildenhall, England, completed the 100th refueling mission March 17, 2013, supporting French fighter aircraft conducting operations in Mali.

The Airmen and aircraft deployed from RAF Mildenhall to southwest Europe on Jan. 26, 2013 and began flying as the 351st Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron Jan. 27, 2013.

In less than two months, the 351st EARS has completed 100 sorties supporting the French. The sorties include more than 1,000 receiver contacts and more than 4.5 million pounds of fuel transferred.

The fuel directly enables French air force fighter aircraft to support ground forces, said French air force Commandant Lionel Vantard, Joint Force Air Component Lyon-Mt. Verdun Master Air Operations Plan planner. The fighters are based at airfields far from ground operations for security reasons, and the aircraft would not have enough fuel to transit between bases and the operations area without air refueling.

“Without U.S. Air Force refueling support, the French air force would lose about 50 percent of their daily fighter sorties,” said Vantard.

In addition to accomplishing the mission, Vantard and Henderson said working together toward an accomplishment like 100 missions can only build on a strong relationship. Both men agree the mixing of cultures among the planners in the French Standing JFAC LMV has helped to foster a better understanding of how the French air force and U.S. Air Force each operate and plan an air campaign. The friendships and networking that have developed between the planners will help enhance French and U.S. military coordination for future operations.

The 100th mission was flown with the 351st EARS reporting a 99-percent mission effective rate; a marker not easily achieved in a deployed environment.

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U.S. Air Forces in Europe
March 20, 2013

Life of a mission supporting French fighter aircraft
By Capt. Jason Smith
100th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

SOUTHWEST EUROPE: On March 17, 2013, a 351st Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron aircrew delivered fuel to French fighter aircraft over Africa.

The French fighters are conducting operations over Mali, and the air-to-air refueling expands the operational capability of French aircraft by allowing them to remain airborne for extended periods of time.

Since deploying from the 100th Air Refueling Wing, RAF Mildenhall, England, Jan. 26, 2013, the 351st has flown more than 100 sorties in support of the French, delivering more than 4.5 million pounds of fuel.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. March 22, 2013 at 10:04 am

    French “Defense” Ministry is concerned about Sustainable Development:

    http://www.defense.gouv.fr/english/portail-defense/defence-and-you/sustainable-development/sustainable-development

    I don’t know if the bombs they’re dropping on Mali are eco-designed or if the jets they’re using to drop them are optimized to consume less fuel and emit less CO2.

    • AR
      March 23, 2013 at 7:44 pm

      That is hilarious. France has no problem with waging wars of aggression and bombing other nations back to the Stone Age–but it most certainly DOES have a problem with environmentally unfriendly wars of aggression and bombing!

      This is Political Correctness run amok! ;-)

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