U.S. bombers travel back to Minot Air Force Base from latest European Bomber Task Force Deployment

  • Published
  • By 1st Lt. Joseph Hark
  • U.S. Air Forces in Europe - Air Forces Africa Public Affairs

Four U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress aircraft assigned to the 69th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron and recently deployed to Royal Air Force Fairford, U.K., returned back to their home station at Minot Air Force Base, N.D., June 20, concluding the routine bomber task force deployment.   

While deployed, the squadron operated under the banner of Bomber Task Force Europe 24-3. During this deployment, U.S. Airmen and aircraft integrated with NATO Allies and other international partners to synchronize capabilities and assure security commitments across the U.S. European Command area of responsibility. Most notably, the B-52s integrated with the British, Swedish, French, Lithuanian, Polish, German, and Spanish Air Forces.  

“The NATO Alliance is as strong as ever. Integrating with our Allies makes us a more lethal collective force, ready to counter aggression at a moment’s notice,” said General James Hecker, US Air Forces in Europe- Air Forces Africa commander. Hecker added that integration training missions such as this send a strong message of deterrence to adversaries and underpins the NATO Alliance’s collective deterrence and commitment to defend the Euro-Atlantic. 

BTF 24-3 is a part of Large-Scale Global Exercise 2024, an umbrella term that incorporates dozens of separate exercises and military activities, under multiple combatant commands. This enables the U.S. Joint Force to train with Allies and partners and improve shared understanding, trust, and interoperability on security challenges across the globe. 

“In today’s dynamic warfare environment, we must prioritize readiness alongside our Allies and partners. This Bomber Task Force shows we stand ready to deter and defend against any adversaries posing a threat to international cooperation and peace,” said Hecker.  

For more information, please contact the U.S. Air Forces in Europe – Air Forces Africa Public Affairs office at usafepao.pao@us.af.mil or, after hours, at usafepa.pastaffdutyofficer@us.af.mil