Less Than One Month

July 27 will be a big day for the 12-nation strategic airlift capability consortium as it stands ready to activate the heavy airlift wing at Papa AB, Hungary, that will operate its three C-17 transports. It will also celebrate the arrival of its first C-17 on that day, according to a release yesterday. Approximately 150 air force personnel from the 12 nations and their families will live at the base, including 43 US Air Force members and their kin. The wing’s multinational aircrews will fly missions that support the participating nations’ needs as well as those of NATO, the European Union, and United Nations, especially in humanitarian relief roles. Ten of the participating nations are NATO members: Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovenia, and the US. The remaining two, Finland and Sweden, are NATO Partnership for Peace members. (For more on the SAC, read Team Airlift from the June 2009 issue of Air Force Magazine.)