Al Udeid Serves as Critical Hub for Humanitarian Airdrops

Since humanitarian airdrop operations began in northern Iraq earlier this month, airmen and soldiers at al Udeid AB, Qatar, have worked feverishly to build pallets to support the flow of aid. C-17 and C-130 aircrews flying with the base’s 379th Air Expeditionary Wing have delivered more than 114,000 meals and 35,000 gallons of water since Aug. 8 to Iraqi refugees fleeing Islamist terrorists in and around Sinjar, Iraq, according to an Aug. 15 base release. The airmen and soldiers have worked day and night to build an average of 100 pallets a day, states the release. “We have talented, motivated personnel ready for the challenge and the opportunity to put their skills to use,” said CWO2 Robert Schwarz, an airdrop system technician with the Army’s 11th Quartermaster Company, Det. 1. Air Force Central Command spokesman Lt. Col. Tadd Sholtis told Air Force Magazine that a “sizable portion, but not all” forward-deployed Air Force assets at bases in the Arabian Gulf are supporting the operations in Iraq, as aircraft rotating to al Udeid and other bases in the region are also supporting Afghanistan operations and other missions.