How France readied its Airbus A400M fleet for war

As France prepares to retire the last of its ageing C-160R Transalls, Babak Taghvaee looks at how the French Air and Space Force readied its Airbus A400M Atlas fleet for war

Eighteen Airbus A400M-180 Atlas turboprop strategic airlifters form the core of the Armée de l'Air et de l'Espace’s (AAE, French Air and Space Force) transport force. Currently in service with the 61e and 64e Escadre de Transport (61st and 64th Transport wings) at Orleans-Bricy and Évreux-Fauville Air Bases, respectively, both recently participated in the Kabul Airlift. Dubbed Operation Apagan, Atlas crews evacuated thousands of Afghan and French citizens from Afghanistan’s besieged capital between August 15-28, 2021.

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