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    Airpower Summary for May 21, 2009



    Courtesy Story

    United States Air Forces Central     

    SOUTHWEST ASIA — Coalition airpower integrated with coalition ground forces in Iraq and the international security assistance force in Afghanistan in the following operations, May 21, according to Combined Air and Space Operations Center officials.

    In Afghanistan, the battle in Lashkar Gah, which started, May 18, continued. Many additional sorties of coalition aircraft entered the fight, including Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt IIs, F-15E Strike Eagles, B-1B Lancers, MQ-1B Predators, MQ-9A Reapers, and Navy F/A-18F Super Hornets. Aircraft struck anti-Afghan forces positions using several guided bomb unit types, general purpose 500-pound guided bombs, strafes, and Hellfire missiles. Targets included enemy fighting positions among treelines, ridges, and buildings; sniper hides and fighting holes; and mortar and rocket emplacements. Several aircraft flew shows of force to deter enemy forces or to suppress their fire to enable friendly maneuver.

    In Ghazni, A-10s carried out a series of strikes and strafes to target a group of anti-Afghan forces engaging Afghan and coalition units. The A-10 hit a concentration of enemy personnel in the open and destroyed a fighting position inside a building. The jet also performed shows of force and expended flares to suppress the enemy.

    A UK Royal Air Force Harrier GR-9 executed attacks against enemy positions in buildings and treelines near Sangin. The strikes, conducted using Paveway guided munitions and rockets, halted enemy fire against an Afghan and coalition patrol. The aircraft also provided assistance to ground forces in targeting mortar fire against anti-Afghan positions.

    Near Morghab, Navy F/A-18E Super Hornets conducted shows of force to disperse enemy forces attacking a Convoy. The aircraft also provided armed overwatch to ensure the convoy safely reached its destination.

    A coalition aircraft performed a show of force over a suspicious position in order to deter a potential enemy attack on an Afghan and coalition patrol. The aircraft also checked out a series of ground locations in the path of the patrol, providing reconnaissance for the ground force commander. Nearby, A Navy F/A-18C Hornet also performed a show of force and expended flares as a deterrent to enemy action.

    Joint Terminal Attack Controllers assigned to coalition units verified the success of these missions.

    In total, 81 close air support missions were flown in support of the ISAF and Afghan security forces, reconstruction activities and route patrols.

    Nineteen Air Force 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 30 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-seven Air Force and Navy surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions as part of operations in Iraq. In addition, four Air Force and Coalition aircraft performed tactical reconnaissance.

    U.S. Air Force C-130s and C-17s provided intra-theater heavy airlift, helping to sustain operations throughout Afghanistan, Iraq, and the Horn of Africa.

    Approximately 140 airlift sorties were flown; 670 tons of cargo was delivered; and about 3,550 passengers were transported.

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

    On May 20, U.S. Air Force aerial refueling crews flew 46 sorties and off-loaded approximately 2.6 million pounds of fuel to 195 receiving aircraft.



    Date Taken: 05.24.2009
    Date Posted: 05.24.2009 03:18
    Story ID: 34017

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