Allied Air Command led a dynamic long-range operation above Romania with the Combined Air Operations Centre at Torrejón coordinating Allied fighter and bomber aircraft. Italian Eurofighters and USAF F15Es supported by USAF B-52s carried out a combined offensive against adversarial Air Defence systems, simulated by Romanian F-16s, Spanish F-18s and the French Mamba Surface-Based Air and Missile Defence (SBAMD) system deployed in Romania.
“These missions provide a valuable opportunity to train our crews in a complex, contested and dynamic environment,” said Colonel Michele Morelli, Italian Task Force Air “Gladiator” commander “Training these high-end capabilities including bomber and fighter integration ensures NATO can achieve a desired level of control of the air, wherein the Alliance is able to conduct the full range of its missions in peacetime, crisis and conflict,” he added.
The participants were pitted against an intricate scenario based on peer threats demonstrating Alliance readiness and capability. This allowed Allied units to practice tactics, techniques and procedures designed to defeat a complex set of potential real-world challenges in a contested air domain.
“These training opportunities are a key element in increasing the readiness and interoperability of Allied aircraft and SBAMD units,” said Lieutenant Colonel Gonzalo Tortosa Méndez, Commander, Spanish Detachment VIESPE “They provide the Spanish F-18 detachment with a valuable opportunity to operate with several of our Allies and apply NATO standards against a full spectrum of threats,” he added.
The combined training activity takes place in compliance with international laws and standards as part of a programme of regular and repeated vigilance activities aimed at shielding the eastern flank and assuring NATO Allies in the region.
The B-52s are currently conducting their Bomber Task Force rotation out of Moron, Spain. Over the next few weeks, the USAF bombers will fly alongside numerous Allied Air Forces across differing platforms furthering Alliance cohesion and interoperability.