Bomber Task Force Europe: B-1s thunder through Black Sea for maritime mission

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  • U.S. Air Force in Europe - Air Forces Africa Public Affairs

Two B-1B Lancer aircraft from the 9th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron, currently deployed to RAF Fairford for Bomber Task Force Europe, executed a counter maritime mission in the Black Sea region today alongside European allies and partners.

The B-1B strategic bomber is a versatile conventional weapons platform, which provides U.S. European Command and NATO advanced options to support a wide range of air, land, and sea operations. This versatility expands the global reach and power of U.S. Air Forces in Europe – Air Forces Africa assets while integrating with coalition aircraft.

The extended length of the mission required air refueling support from RAF Mildenhall’s KC-135 Stratotankers and a Turkish Air Force KC-135. NATO air refueling increases the combined effectiveness of the alliance by extending the range and duration of the strategic bomber missions.

“Our forces are postured to respond to any threat, anywhere, anytime,” said Gen. Jeff Harrigian, USAFE-AFAFRICA commander.“BTF provides enhanced interoperability training with our allies and partners, building coalition strength, and bolstering our ability to respond to all threats with unmatched power.”

The strategic bombers also integrated with Romanian, Polish, and Canadian fighters, supporting the NATO Air Policing mission over Romania, as they transited through the region and throughout the maritime targeting mission.

U.S. Strategic Command has supported BTF deployments since 2018, which amplifies the European Deterrence Initiative’s focus on expanding partnerships and advancing coalition capabilities throughout the European theater.

Coverage of BTF deployments will be continuously available on the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service at:

For media interested in engagement opportunities, please contact USAFE-AFAFRICA Public Affairs as +49 06371-47-6558 or email or