CONTINGENT READY TO DEPART TOMORROWThe India Post, Chandigarh, 6th July 2008:According to press release issued by The Indian Air Force would be participating in a multinational Air Exercise, ‘Ex – Red Flag 08’ at the invitation of United States Air Force (USAF), scheduled to be held at Nellis Air Force Base in the US from 09-23 Aug 08.
The IAF would be participating in the exercise with eight SU-30 MK-I aircraft, two IL-78 air to air refuellers and one IL-76 transport aircraft. The contingent would comprise 156 personnel below officers rank and 91 officers (inclusive of 10 members of ‘Garud’ IAF Special Force team). The contingent is being led by Gp Capt D Chaudhury and Exercise Coordinator would be Gp Capt Ajay Rathore.
Exercise Red Flag is a multinational air exercise that is held thrice a year at Nellis Air Force base, USA. The IAF would be participating in the Exercise alongside South Korean Air Force with F-15K and the French Air Force with their latest Rafale aircraft, apart from the USAF. Red Flag was originally conceived in 1975 by USAF with an advanced aerial combat training format – the purpose being to ensure that pilots are trained well enough to survive in air combat and win air battles. The exercise holds tremendous learning opportunity for all the participating Air Forces.
Prior to the main Exercise Red Flag 08 at Nellis, the IAF’s contingent would be working up at Mountain Home Air Base in Idaho, US from 17 Jul 08 till 07 Aug 08. At Mountain Home, the IAF contingent would be flying with the F-16s & F-15s of USAF. The purpose of the work up phase is to streamline the procedures and have a clear understanding of the new flying environment.
The IAF contingent with its aircraft are scheduled to depart from Pune on 07 Jul 08 and transit via Doha (Qatar), Chorlu (Turkey), Mont de Marsan (France) and Lages (Portugal) before reaching land main USA and Mountain Home airbase on 17 Jul 08.