Bomber Force in the UK


History was made at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire, UK on June 12, 2017 when all three long-range bomber types assigned to the United States Air Force Global Strike Command were presented together for the media. The aircraft were in the UK to participate in Exercise Baltic Operations (BALTOPS 2017) staged around the Baltic Sea between June 1-16. This year`s exercise involved 14 countries. BALTOPS is an annual multinational maritime focussed exercise designed to strengthen interoperability between NATO and regional partners. Running concurrently was Exercise Sabre Strike 2017; a long-standing US Army Europe led cooperative training exercise. Three B-1B Lancers and three B-52H Stratofortresses participated in both exercises. Two B-2 Spirits completed global power missions en-route to Fairford arriving on June 9 and, at the time AIR International closed for press, were expected to fly local missions during their deployment.

The accompanying image shows from left to right 34th Bomb Squadron B-1B 85-0083/EL from Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota, 110th Bomb Squadron B-2 88-0329/WM from Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, and 20th Bomb Squadron B-52H 60-0002/LA based at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana.