Strategic bombers soar across Arabian Peninsula

Jun 20, 2024
Written by: Ninth Air Force (Air Forces Central) Public Affairs
A U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress, assigned to the 5th Bomb Wing, conducts aerial refueling with a KC-135 Stratotanker, assigned the 350th Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron, June 14, 2024 during a presence patrol mission over the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility. The B-52 is capable of flying at high subsonic speeds, at altitudes of up to 50,000 feet, within the atmospheric tropopause, with worldwide precision navigation capability, providing a unique rapid response to senior coalition leaders globally. U.S. Air Force photo Tech Sgt. Ashley Sokolov

U.S. CENTRAL COMMAND AREA OF RESPONSIBILITY —
U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress long-range strategic bombers integrated with U.S. and Coalition Forces throughout the Middle East, June 12 and 14, including passes through the Red Sea and Arabian Gulf, as part of Bomber Task Force, a rotational bomber presence in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.


The strategic bombers from Minot Air Force Base’s 69th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron, currently deployed to the United Kingdom’s RAF Fairford, conducted a cross-combatant command mission, which integrated allies and partners across U.S. European Command, U.S. Africa Command, and U.S. Central Command.


This iteration incorporated fighter escorts from several coalition nations and integration with MC-130J Commando II aircraft operated by Special Operations Command-Central joint warfighters, which recently conducted familiarization training for the rapid employment of palletized effects from cargo aircraft.


The rotational bomber presence offers familiarity on how to integrate long-range strike capabilities to support deterrence initiatives. As part of a live weapons employment training in June 2023, the U.S. Air Force launched a Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile at a training range within the U.S. Central Command’s area of responsibility to further demonstrate advanced strike capabilities.


The bomber missions also provide senior coalition leaders with strategic options to employ advanced conventional weapons, including airstrikes on February 2 from two B-1B Lancer supersonic bombers against Iranian-Aligned Militia Group facilities in Iraq and Syria.


Bomber Task Force missions highlight the U.S.’s ability to rapidly field combat airpower while enhancing training opportunities and interoperability for regional allies and partners operating alongside U.S. forces.

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