B-52s Set Sortie Record in CENTCOM

B-52s deployed to the Middle East recently set a record, flying 277 sorties straight without a single flight canceled due to a maintenance issue. Maj. Gen. Jay Silveria, deputy commander of Air Forces Central Command said at AWS17 B-52s are flying regular missions against ISIS in Iraq and Syria, along with flying from its base in southwest Asia to conduct strikes in Afghanistan. The bombers deployed to Central Command last year to replace B-1s that had to return to the US for maintenance, and quickly became part of the campaign to bomb ISIS, Silveria said. The amount of strikes inside Afghanistan has picked up as of late, with the spring fighting season translating to more strikes, Silveria said. Air Force tankers are not permanently based in Afghanistan, but recently were sent to Bagram Air Base because bad weather in southwest Asia meant they couldn’t take off and fly daily to Afghanistan to keep up the needed support.