our A-29 Super Tucanos arrive in Kabul, Afghanistan, March 20, 2017, before the beginning of the 2017 fighting season. The aircraft will bolster the Afghan Air Force’s inventory from eight to 12 A-29s in country. Airmen from Train, Advise, Assist Command-Air, as part of Resolute Support Mission, work in tandem with their Afghan counterparts fostering a working relationship and fortifying confidence in the mission.
Four A-29 Super Tucano light-attack aircraft arrived for duty at Kabul Air Wing, Kabul, Afghanistan, March 20, 2017, where they will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance.
The latest arrivals, which traveled from Moody Air Force Base, Georgia, bring the AAF A-29 inventory from eight to 12 aircraft in country.
There are still seven A-29s assigned to Moody AFB, where they are used for training pilots.
“The four additional aircraft will allow us to increase the number of missions we are able to support nationwide,” said an AAF A-29 pilot who can’t be identified for security reasons. “More targets can be attacked—more ground troops can be supported.”
The AAF A-29 pilot said sometimes a nation needs their military to pressure the enemy in order to develop peace and stability.
“The AAF plays a major role in this,” he said. “We are helping the peace process. When an A-29 is overhead, it gives motivation to the ground troops, and the enemy realizes they can be struck anywhere and will feel the pressure to come to the peace table. This is how we will bring peace and stability to Afghanistan.”
Brig. Gen. David Hicks, Train, Advise, Assist Command-Air and 438th Air Expeditionary Wing commander, said the A-29s were a “game changer” in the 2016 fighting season, and he has high expectations for the aircraft and crews in 2017.
“The AAF pilots are continually gaining proficiency in the A-29,” Hicks said. “They are capable of providing air attack anywhere in the country. In the past, the Afghan National Army relied on the coalition for air support. Now, it’s their own countrymen overhead flying the missions.”
Hicks said the additional A-29s give the AAF more options to forward deploy airpower throughout the country.
Lt. Col. Johnnie Green, the 438th Air Expeditionary Advisory Squadron commander, said the AAF and U.S. A-29 pilots have a unique bond.
Source US Air Force By Capt. Jason Smith, 438th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs. Read more..