A B-1B bomber dropped a 2,000-pound joint direct attack munition and 500-pound JDAMs to destroy an enemy compound and enemy combatants April 23 in Kajaki Dam, Afghanistan, according to an April 24 release from officials in the combined air and space operations center in Southwest Asia. A joint terminal attack controller declared that the strike was successful. This was one of the 39 close air support missions flown by coalition aircraft in support of Afghan and International Security Assistance Force operations in Afghanistan on that day. In Iraq, Air Force F-16s dropped 500-pound JDAMs to take out house-borne improvised explosive devices in Baghdad. An on-the-scene JTAC said the missions were successful. Coalition aircraft flew a total of 60 CAS sorties in Iraq April 23. (See box at end of column for more airpower data.)
In a nighttime ceremony contrived to continue concealment of many of its features, the new B-21 bomber rolled out of Northrop Grumman's Palmdale, Calif. plant Dec. 2. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the aircraft's advanced technology represents "deterrence, the American way."