HomeNewsArticle Display

US, Greece reinforce proven partnership through airpower

A Hellenic air force F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft from the 343rd Fighter Squadron lands on the flightline January 26, 2015, at Souda Bay, Greece. The aircraft flew during training operations as part of a flying training deployment between the Greek and U.S. air forces. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Joe W. McFadden)

A Hellenic air force F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft from the 343rd Fighter Squadron lands on the flightline January 26, 2015, at Souda Bay, Greece. The aircraft flew during training operations as part of a flying training deployment between the Greek and U.S. air forces. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Joe W. McFadden)

A Hellenic air force F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft from the 340th Fighter Squadron takes off January 26, 2015, from the flightline at Souda Bay, Greece. The aircraft, assigned to the Greek air force's 115th Combat Wing, participated in a flying training deployment along with the U.S. Air Force's 480th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Joe W. McFadden)

A Hellenic air force F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft from the 340th Fighter Squadron takes off January 26, 2015, from the flightline at Souda Bay, Greece. The aircraft, assigned to the Greek air force's 115th Combat Wing, participated in a flying training deployment along with the U.S. Air Force's 480th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Joe W. McFadden)

SOUDA BAY, Greece (AFNS) -- Over the clear blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea, the U.S. and Greek air forces continue bilateral flying training missions here.

The training, which began Jan. 16 and will run through Feb. 13, aims to bolster the nations' warfighting capabilities through combined air operations as well as maintain joint readiness between the two NATO partners.

The pre-planned training engagement between the 480th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, and the Hellenic air force's 115th Combat Wing represents U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa's third flying training deployment (FTD) held on the island of Crete since 2014.

"Successful partnering activities like this lead to tangible benefits during peacetime contingencies and crises," said Gen. Frank Gorenc, the USAFE - AFAFRICA commander, regarding the 494th Fighter Squadron's FTD to Souda Bay in February 2014. "Continuing our partnership with the Hellenic air force allows both nations to enhance interoperability and readiness. Any opportunity our forces have to fly in new airspace with one of our NATO partners is beneficial. No nation can confront today's challenges alone."

This FTD includes approximately 300 personnel from the 52nd Fighter Wing at Spangdahlem AB , who will fly, maintain or support operations involving 18 of the wing's F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft, while evaluating both aircraft and personnel capabilities.

The F-16s, augmenting USAFE's 'Forward, Ready, Now!' posture, conduct multiple flying sorties alongside those from the 115th CW's 340th and 343rd Fighter Squadrons.

"In the air, our fighter pilots have conducted very intense air-to-air training with HAF pilots, honing each other's combat flying skills while improving our ability to operate as a bilateral airpower team," said Lt. Col. David Berkland, the 480th EFS commander. "It's our second FTD to Souda Bay in six months, and, at this point, we've built a rock-solid relationship with our HAF partners."

The training opportunity also represents another chapter in the countries' continuing military partnership -- one that dates back to the early 19th century when Americans backed the Greek's fight for independence against the Ottoman Empire.

"It is a strong belief that this kind of training experience will further strengthen the existing bonds between Greece and the United States and increase our NATO military capability," said HAF Col. Ioannis Gerolymos, the 115th CW commander. "Such combined Greek-U.S. air force exercises have enhanced the warfighting capabilities of both U.S. and Greek forces; we continually learn from and improve upon each other's tactics, techniques and procedures."

Engage

Facebook Twitter
RT @DeptofDefense: “Without us, you live in the dark!” Electricity keeps the mission going at @RAFMildenhall, England. Meet one of the air…
RT @AFSpace: @AirWarCollege faculty members met w/ @US_SpaceCom & AFSPC senior leaders last week. The faculty learned about the challenges…
KC-135 Stratotankers provide the Air Force with global strike & rapid mobility. Like any of our assets we train &… https://t.co/zjATXCfQlN
RT @AF_Falcons: Maybe it will snow in February for the game... Colorado: no need to wait https://t.co/vq7KPsiITx
Cyber security is everyone's responsibility. First step, #BeCyberSmart. https://t.co/mVZr4nJoJK
“There have been some great Airmen, both military and civilian, at Tyndall AFB before, during and after the storm.… https://t.co/EiEga9ur0N
RT @AFSpecOpsCmd: Our community is deeply saddened by the passing of one of our own, TSgt Peter Kraines, a Special Tactics Pararescueman. O…
RT @PACAF: #Airmen with the 31st and 33rd Rescue Squadrons: saving lives is what they do. @KadenaAirBase #Pararescue #HH60 #Readiness #A
RT @HQUSAFEPA: Not our typical #wingman. A butterfly lands on a 31st Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief at #Aviano Air Base, Italy 🦋…
Hey Atlanta, Georgia! #AmericasAirForce will be in your hometown this weekend. Join us for the @AtlantaAirShow, be… https://t.co/oW2L7QoGT3
RT @ncaawrestling: .@AF_Wrestle is building something special and putting in the work on The Terrazzo #LetsFly https://t.co/N4GDrg6uF9 📸:…
RT @AF_SBIR_STTR: The Air Force tech accelerator AFWERX is dangling the prospect of an extra injection of capital for commercial startup fi…
RT @AETCommand: It's Week 2 of #NCSAM2019 and here are a few practices you can implement to defend your family and #becybersmart: verify an…
RT @GenDaveGoldfein: This past weekend our @AFThunderbirds and @rafredarrows put on an amazing show at the #PacificAirShow. I'm sure ACM Mi…
RT @AF_Falcons: “The cadets at the Air Force Academy have the best college football venue in the state of Colorado.” https://t.co/XKJMV1k…
RT @NASCARonNBC: "You guys are the real heroes of our country." Master Sgt. Chad Huggins took a joyride with Jeff Burton, presented by @To
RT @30thSpaceWing: #ICYMI An unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile was launched during an operational test Wednesday, Oc…
A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to Spangdahlem AB, Germany, crashed near Zemmer, Germany, during a r… https://t.co/ugrVTbeQNB
We are one month out from our next Pitch Day! This initiate will help provide emerging, smarter technologies to our… https://t.co/auyQUFANyY
RT @PACAF: Medics from the @51stFW took part in multiple two-day Tactical Combat Casualty Care training courses that provides medical perso…