More than 130 members of the 15th Airlift Squadron, a C-17 unit, returned home to Charleston AFB, S.C., Jan. 3 after a four-month deployment to support US military operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, and the Horn of Africa. The Post and Courier, a Charleston newspaper, reported Jan. 4 that these airmen flew more than 3,000 sorties, dropped more than 103 million pounds of cargo, and carried 79,000 military personnel during their time in the war theater. “Putting cargo out there, bullets out there, supplies, food, water out there in mountainous terrains in Afghanistan, anything you can think of, we dropped it,” said Capt. Roosevelt Loveless, a C-17 pilot from the unit. Replacing the 15th AS in theater is Charleston’s 16th AS which headed out Dec. 29, along with members of the base’s 437th Operations Support Squadron. “We have trained for almost a year and are now ready to go out and do the mission,” said Maj. Todd McCoy, 437th Operations Group assistant director of operations. (Includes Charleston report by Amn. Ian Hoachlander)
As the U.S. continues to pursue a diplomatic resolution with Russia over its troop buildup on the Ukraine border, the Defense Department is looking into what capabilities it will need to reassure NATO allies if Russia does launch an invasion, its top spokesperson said Jan. 21.