Inaugural Gunfighter Flag Concludes

The first “Gunfighter Flag” large-force air combat training exercise at Mountain Home AFB, Idaho, wrapped up Sept. 24. The exercise brought together more than 450 personnel from the US Air Force and Navy and Canada and featured E-3 AWACS aircraft, F-15s, F-15Es, F-16s, Canadian CF-18s, Navy EA-6Bs, and a KC-15 tanker. Throughout the exercise, which began Sept. 14, anywhere from 60 to 70 aircraft participated each day. “We don’t often have the opportunity to practice large-force employment on this scale,” said Col. John Bird, commander of Mountain Home’s 366th Fighter Wing. The training scenarios included offensive and defensive counterair and high-value airborne asset protection. The F-16s, which flew in from Nellis AFB, Nev., played the role of the adversary force. (Mountain Home report by SrA. Samantha S. Crane)