Onboard a B-52 during NATO fighter interceptions

Aviation journalist Malcolm English recalls the privilege of flying with a Stratofortress crew during NATO fighter interceptions in November 1980.

Although the B-52 has never (yet!) been stationed in Europe on a permanent basis, the type has deployed to the UK on numerous occasions. These are usually to participate in exercises with NATO partners and US colleagues based in Europe, but the type has also launched real combat missions from Europe too. RAF Fairford was the operating base for B-52Hs to launch attacks against targets in the former Yugoslavia during Operation Allied Force in 1999 and again during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003.

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