Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) CF-188 Hornets have been active over Europe since April last year but ended their European operations this week. The last Hornets that were part of the Canadian Air Task Force (ATF) returned home, departing Spangdahlem Air Base in Germany.
In April 2014, NATO began to implement a series of military measures to reinforce NATO’s collective defence in response to Russian aggression towards Ukraine. The RCAF stood up ATF Romania in May 2014 in Câmpia Turzii, Romania, including six CF-188 Hornet fighter aircraft and 200 personnel. The ATF conducted interoperability training with NATO allies, including the Romanian Air Force, in the areas of air defence, air superiority, aerospace testing and evaluation, and tactical support.
In September 2014, the ATF relocated to the Baltics to fulfill the Baltic Air Policing (BAP) mission in Šiauliai, Lithuania, using four Hornets. The Canadian activity over the Baltics ended on 31 December.
In January, the remaining Hornets and personnel relocated to Spangdahlem Air Base in the German Eiffel region, where regular training missions were flown. The base also served as a stop-over point for Canadian assets being used in operations over Syria.
© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image: A Canadian CF-188, seen from the tanker. (Image © Sgt Alain Martineau / DND-MDN Canada)