The Afghan Air Force received its first two Lockheed C-130H tactical transport aircraft on October 9th, 2013. The American airplanes were ‘targeted’ by the water guns of the Kabul Airport fire trucks immediately after arrival.
A second batch of two ex-USAF C-130s will follow. After pressure from USAF senior officials the US Department of Defence scrapped the already procured 16 Alenia G222s, aka C-27As, from the Afghan Air Force service in 2012. At the time of the cancellation 12 of the 16 were mission-ready at Kabul with Afghan personnel partly responsible for the aircraft.
Some hot shots in the US military thought better of the larger C-130, but according to critics the personnel competence problems with operating the Hercules will be the same as with the C-27s. With a lower number of aircraft – 4 against 16 – the transport fleet of the Afghan Air Force will be very much relying on US forces for some time to come.
Source: ISAF with additional reporting by AIRheads’ Marcel Burger