Coalition aircraft flew 50 close air support missions in Afghanistan and 56 in Iraq on July 6, Air Forces Central said in a release. In Afghanistan, for example, A-10s fired cannon rounds and dropped general-purpose 500-pound bombs onto anti-government forces in the vicinity of Nagalam. And a B-1B bomber attacked enemy fighting positions in the same area with 500-pound and 2,000-pound joint direct attack munitions. Further, an F-15E struck enemy forces in the vicinity of Shkin with a 500-pound laser-guided bomb and 500-pound JDAMs. Another F-15E unleashed cannon rounds on enemy fighting positions near Molla Ashraf, AFCENT said.
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.