Busting Traffickers with Bombers

The Air Force in August conducted a large-scale, integrated air operation in the Caribbean that not only trained aircrews, but also aided law enforcement agencies in seizing 6,100 kilograms of cocaine. Earlier this year, Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James described an initial B-1 training operation in the Caribbean that also resulted in a drug bust. The Air Force is building on that idea for large-scale operations, and from Aug. 22-29, B-1s and B-52s, along with HC-130s, KC-10s, KC-135s, E-8 JSTARS, E-3 Sentry, and RQ-4 Global Hawks, flew an integrated air operation focused on the bombers finding and tracking drug traffickers as targets. Once the targets were acquired and tracked, their locations were passed along to relevant law enforcement agencies that made a bust. The operation resulted in the? arrests of 17 drug traffickers, James said during a Wednesday briefing. The service will plan for future similar operations to get “double bang for your buck” by both training and stopping drug trafficking.