The United States to send F-22 fighter jets to Europe as part of efforts to support eastern European members of the NATO allies against Russian military aggression.
U.S. Air Force will soon dispatch its most advanced warplanes, the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor stealth fighter jet, to Europe in a show of solidarity with allies that have concerns about Russian actions in Ukraine, Air Force leaders said Monday.
“Russia’s military activity in the Ukraine continues to be of great concern to us and to our European allies,” Air Force Secretary Deborah James, said in a news conference.
“This inaugural F-22 training deployment will train with our joint partners and our NATO allies across Europe as part of our continued effort to assure our allies and demonstrate our commitments to security and stability of Europe.” she said.
The ability of the jets to communicate and fight together with the Euro-fighter and other advanced warplanes are to be tested in the airborne drills.
“We’ll get the F-22 into facilities that we would potentially use in a conflict in Europe, things like the bases where we do aviation attachments, to places where we do air-policing missions,” Gen. Mark Welsh III, the Air Force chief of staff said.
James said that Secretary of Defense Carter announce last week that “Our approach to Russia needs to be strong and it needs to be balance.”
The Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor is a single-seat, twin-engine fifth-generation super-maneuverable fighter aircraft that uses stealth technology developed for the United States Air Force. It was designed primarily as an air superiority fighter, but has additional capabilities that include ground attack, electronic warfare, and signals intelligence roles, according to reports.
The air force has previously used the Raptor jets in Asia-Pacific region. The deployment would give F-22 pilots more experience with the European terrain, James have said.
The number of stealth planes deployed and the exact date or site of the deployment where not given in details because of operational security reasons. IMAGE Getty Images