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May 2 airpower summary: B-1B provides close-air support

5/3/2007 - SOUTHWEST ASIA (AFNEWS) -- Coalition airpower supported coalition ground forces in Iraq and the International Security Assistance Force, or ISAF, in Afghanistan in the following operations May 2, according to Combined Air and Space Operations Center officials here.

In Afghanistan, an Air Force B-1B Lancer dropped a GBU-31 bomb on insurgents in an open area near Asmar. A joint terminal attack controller, called a JTAC, confirmed the weapon hit the desired target.

An Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II dropped a GBU-12 on insurgents carrying AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades near Asmar. A JTAC confirmed the weapon successfully hit the target. The pilots also provided reconnaissance of suspicious activities nearby.

A French air force M2000 Mirage provided a show of force for a coalition convoy near Qalat. The pilots then provided overwatch for the convoy and reconnaissance of suspicious activity in the area.

In total, 37 close-air-support missions were flown in support of the ISAF and Afghan security forces, reconstruction activities and route patrols.

Nine Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, or ISR, aircraft flew missions in support of operations in Afghanistan.

In Iraq, A-10s provided overwatch for a disabled coalition vehicle near Baghdad. The pilots searched the surrounding area for potential threats and relayed suspicious activity to a JTAC for the ground commander's action.

Also near Baghdad, Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons conducted a counter-improvised explosive device reconnaissance mission. The pilots observed several individuals loading items into a vehicle. The pilots followed the vehicle to a building and reported the coordinates to a JTAC.

More F-16s provided overwatch for coalition forces taking fire from insurgents near Baghdad. The pilots then provided overwatch for a coalition convoy that struck an IED nearby. No further attacks were reported after the F-16s arrived.

Also near Baghdad, F-16s conducted a show of force for a coalition convoy that struck an IED and was receiving sporadic small arms fire. A JTAC confirmed the show of force was successful. The pilots also provided reconnaissance in the area.

Near Al Kut, F-16s provided overwatch for a coalition forces raid. The pilots then searched for IEDs multiple nearby routes.

In total, coalition aircraft flew 52 close-air-support missions for Operation Iraqi Freedom. These missions supported coalition ground forces, protected key infrastructure, provided overwatch for reconstruction activities and helped to deter and disrupt terrorist activities.

Seventeen Air Force and Navy ISR aircraft flew missions in support of operations in Iraq. Additionally, one Air Force fighter aircraft performed tactical reconnaissance. 

Air Force C-130 Hercules aircraft and C-17 Globemaster IIIs provided intra-theater heavy airlift support, helping to sustain operations throughout Afghanistan, Iraq and the Horn of Africa. Approximately 145 airlift sorties were flown; nearly 580 tons of cargo were delivered, and approximately 1,910 passengers were transported. This included about 7,800 pounds of troop supplies airdropped in Afghanistan.

Coalition C-130 crews from Australia, Canada, Iraq, Japan and South Korea flew in support of OIF or OEF.

On May 1, Air Force, French air force and Royal Air Force tankers flew 41 sorties and off-loaded more than 2.4 million pounds of fuel to 202 receiving aircraft.



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