Helping Hand

Air Mobility Command C-130s and C-17s are flying daily airlift missions across the African continent in support of 17th Air Force, the air component of US Africa Command. For example, between Oct. 1, 2008, and June 16, 2009, AMC C-130s deployed in direct support of 17th AF flew 1,086 missions, moving more than 830 passengers and more than 506 tons of cargo into Africa, according to Col. Bob Holba, Air Mobility Division chief for the 617th Air and Space Operations Center at Ramstein AB, Germany. These missions included moving UN peacekeepers and peacekeeping equipment and participation in military-to-military engagements with African partners. Because 17th AF has no permanently assigned airlifters of its own, AMC supports it with airmen and aircraft that deploy on four-month rotations. Even after 17th AF reaches full operational capability in October, it will continue to rely on AMC airlift assets. (Scott report by MSgt. Angie Sarchet) (For more on USAF’s air activities on the African continent, read Engagement in Africa from the July 2009 issue of Air Force Magazine.)