The US fighters joined their Royal Air Force colleagues who are conducting NATO’s enhanced Air Policing mission out of Amari with their Eurofighter Typhoons. In early April, Joint Base Langley-Eustice’s 94th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron deployed 12 F-22 Raptors to Poland’s Powidz Air Base in support of the critical mission, which augments the Alliance’s Integrated Air and Missile Defence (IAMD) and Counter-Integrated Air Defence System (C-IADS) capabilities to safeguard the border along NATO’s eastern flank.
Rapidly fielding forces in the Baltic Sea region highlights the operational readiness of Allied forces and their ability to respond to defend NATO territory. The enhanced posture allows the Alliance to deter and mitigate any potential air and missile threat. The Air Shielding mission is a purely defensive mission designed to shield and protect Allied territory and populations and is a key component of NATO’s Deterrence and Defence Posture.
The Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania are situated on a critical air, land, and sea corridor, which requires a coordinated approach between Allies to maintain and sustain international freedom of maneuver throughout the region.
An effective IAMD structure incorporates air, land, sea, space, and cyber domains to provide full-spectrum awareness of airspace faced with complex adversary threats. As a highly maneuverable stealth aircraft, the F-22 Raptor fifth generation fighter is designed to rapidly project dominance, penetrate evolving threats, and achieve air superiority.