Coalition and regional partner air forces joined two U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress strategic bombers, two KC-10 Extender tankers and three KC-135 Stratotanker tankers on a presence patrol mission across the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility on June 8, 2022, the Pentagon said Thursday in a press statement.
According to the statement, the bomber’s flight originated at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, and flew over the East Mediterranean, Arabian Peninsula and Red Sea before departing the region.
“Presence patrols, like today’s, show the United States’ continued commitment and interoperability with our partners in the region,” Air Force Lt. Gen. Greg Guillot, Ninth Air Force commander, said. “These highly coordinated efforts demonstrate our combined ability to provide global reach and joint security to the region.”
The number of joint and regional partners participating as well as the long duration of the U.S.-based mission, which demonstrated U.S. capabilities to rapidly respond to threats worldwide, makes the flow of air power during this presence patrol particularly significant. The nine-hour presence patrol flew into the U.S Central Command area of responsibility, flying over the Red Sea and rejoining with partner nation aircraft along the flight path before departing the region, the statement continued.
The B-52 aircraft and crew are assigned to 5th Bomb Wing, Minot AFB and flew the mission under the mission set of Air Force Global Strike Command’s bomber task force.
Through Ninth Air Force, U.S. Central Command has facilitated three presence patrol missions in 2022 as a demonstration of the U.S.-led coalition’s commitment to promoting regional stability. Only one B-52 flew in the last bomber-led mission across the Central Region on March 29, 2022.