Fairford Bustling with Bombers

Air Force Global Strike Command B-2 and B-52 bombers staged deterrent operations from RAF Fairford, Britain, as part of ongoing NATO and US Strategic Command exercises in the region. The B-2s conducted hot-pit refueling and crew change, demonstrating rapid regeneration from a forward location on their brief stopover at Fairford on June 7, according to a release. Three B-52s from Minot AFB, N.D., are simultaneously operating from Fairford in support of exercises Baltops and Saber Strike, according to a second release. The 5th Bomb Wing B-52s were originally slated to fly nonstop sorties from the United States to take part in a scenario off the Swedish coast during NATO’s Baltops. The bombers are now also flying ground-support training over Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland as part of the US Army Europe-led Saber Strike exercise that runs through June 19. “This deployment to RAF Fairford was specifically designed … to ensure maximum opportunities to synchronize and integrate our bomber capabilities with [allied] military assets,” explained STRATCOM Commander Adm. Cecil Haney. Baltops goes to June 20.