Colo. Air National Guard deploys in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve

  • Published
  • By Capt. Kinder Blacke
  • 140th Wing Public Affairs
Residents of Aurora may have noticed that it has been a little quieter than usual lately.

That's because over 200 personnel and eight F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft from the 140th Wing of the Colorado Air National Guard, based here, are currently supporting Operation Atlantic Resolve at Pápa Air Base, Hungary.

During July and August, these Airmen are conducting training and familiarization events alongside our NATO ally Hungary. They will also participate in cross-border training with other deployed U.S. forces' aircraft and NATO aircraft in the region. This deployment is part of Operation Atlantic Resolve and continues to demonstrate our commitment to our allies and European security and stability.

"The overall mission of the 140th Wing and the 120th Fighter Squadron being deployed to Hungary is for our flying training deployment, which is a training we do on an annual basis," said Col. Floyd Dunstan, commander, 140th Wing. "We had an opportunity to come over here and support the European Reassurance Initiative and do some flying with the Hungarian Air Force and also be able to support Joint Terminal Attack Controller training for the Hungarian and Slovenian armed forces."

The Air National Guard routinely rotates forces in and out of Europe, which enhances the strength of NATO alliances without the need to permanently base additional aircraft and Airmen in Europe.

"The role of the COANG in support of European stability operations is greatly important," Dunstan said. "For us to be able to deploy with our NATO partners, Hungary and Slovenia, is very significant because it allows us to align our capabilities and further integrates the multiple armed forces."

Although much of the 140th Wing will be deployed, a significant number will remain at Buckley AFB in order to support their 24-hour Aerospace Control Alert mission, responding at a moment's notice to any airborne threats in the central U.S. region.