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World Affairs – Defense

Open Eyes Opinion {source: AU gov}

Job well-done for the RAAF’s Super Hornets in the Middle East

March 2015 

The Australian Air Task Group conducting operations in Iraq will farewell its six Royal Australian Air Force F/A-18F Super Hornet multi-role fighter aircraft that have been flying high tempo air-strike operations since September.

As part of US led Coalition air operations, the F/A-18A Hornets from Number 75 Squadron have replaced the Super Hornets to continue combating the Daesh terrorist threat in Iraq.

RAAF Air Task Group Commander Air Commodore Glen Braz said the new strike team had completed a comprehensive transition and was now flying combat air operations.

“The last two weeks have been a particularly busy period for the ATG with the current Super Hornet rotation continuing to perform missions together with the new strike element,” AIRCDRE Braz said.

“During the transition, having two outstanding fighter squadrons fly together in combat is a historic milestone for the RAAF.”

The incoming F/A-18A Hornet is a single-seat multi-role fighter while the F/A-18F Super Hornet is a two-seater.

In addition to individual Pilot and Weapon Systems Officer hand-overs, all related supporting personnel have been ‘briefed-in’ and are now fully operational.

Aircrew completed familiarisation flights prior to assuming full operational responsibility.

The well-earned rest for Australia’s F/A-18F Super Hornet crews and support staff from RAAF Base Amberley’s Number 1 Squadron comes after seven months of strike missions which began in September 2014.

The Super Hornets flew over 2900 hours, accounting for in excess of 400 sorties.

The broader US-led international coalition continues to disrupt and degrade the Daesh terrorist threat in Iraq.

Airpower integration empowers the Iraqi Security Forces and denies Daesh the ability to mass troops.


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