(www.SLDinfo.com – By Todd Miller) Exercise Red Flag 16-2 – NATO Airpower Integration With Turkey And Italy Participating – The second Red Flag of 2016 featured an international coalition of NATO partners training against a dynamic and integrated “Red Adversary” Force. The exercise running from February 29 to March 11 included some 23 units representing the US Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines and contingents from NATO partners the Aeronautica Militare (AM – Italian Air Force) and the Turkish Air Force (TAF). Participating units launched from Nellis AFB in Las Vegas, and trained over the 2.9 million acres of land, and 12,000 sq miles of airspace afforded by the Nevada Test and Training Range (NTTR). All told some 75 aircraft and 1700 personnel participated in the exercise.

This was the first Red Flag to feature the Italian Eurofighter Typhoon or F-2000 as it is called in Italy. Italy participated with 8 F-2000s. Some of those Typhoons accompanied the F-35 in its first trans-atlantic flight which landed at Pax River. The Turkish Air Force AF participated with 6 F-16s and 2 KC-135R tankers, and  US aircraft included the F-16CM, F-15E, F-15C, E-3G a variety of helicopters, drones (MQ-9), tankers (KC-135R) specialized aircraft and 2 of the 3 Global Strike Command bombers, the B-52H and B-1B.

This was the first time Turkey had come to Red Flag after the shutdown incident with the Russian Air Force. The wide variety of aircraft are typical of a coalition force should it be thrust into battle. (…)


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Photo credit >>> F-15E, Tod Miller, ibid