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article imageRed Flag goes up at Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas Special

By Jay David Murphy     Aug 13, 2009 in World
Red Team vs Blue Team, its fighter pilot training exercises again at Nellis Air Force base in Las Vegas. Starting in 1975, it is the worlds largest most comprehensive training available for US and invited pilots from around the world.
Red Flag goes up at Nellis Air Force base in Las Vegas.
Red Flag exercises are taking place in a few weeks at Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas. They start up on August 24th and will go through September 7th.
Red Flag exercises are the largest, most comprehensive and realistic combat flight training in the world, and it all takes place over the Nevada desert.
The Red Team consists of F-16CG and F-15C aircraft out of Nellis AFB. The Blue Team consists of F-15C/D from Westfield, MA. The red team are the bad guys and the blue team the good guys.
Then there is multi-national interdiction squad consisting of aircraft from around the world: F-16CG from Hill AFB, UT, B-52H from Barksdale AFB, LA. The Italian Air Force brings in their AMX jets, the United Arab Emirates are there with their F-15CG’s, and there’s the F/A-18’s from NAS Miramar, Ca.
F-16 from the 13th Fighter Squadron Misawa Japan
An F-16 from the 13th Fighter Squadron, Misawa Air Base, Japan, departs for the Nevada Test and Training Ranges, August 20, 2008, during exercise Green Flag 080-9 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev.
Courtesy of the US Air Force by Chief Master Sgt. Gary Emery
Other participators include the SEAD (Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses) group with the EA-6B’s from Whidbey Island, WA.
Command and Control, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance bring the E-3 From Tinker AFB, OK. Special Operations have the MC-130 from Hurlburt Field, FL, and refueling is done by KC-135’s from Fairchild AFB, WA and McConnell AFB, KS.
The skies are filled with military air craft these days around Las Vegas. Last month they had an earlier exercise which included the Israeli Air Force, flying F-16C’s. That particular exercise had two brothers in command as opponents. Col. Dean “Norm Anderson from Shaw Air Force Base in SC. and his younger brother Lt. Col. Ross “Rosco” Anderson from Homestead Reserve Air Force Base. It was the first time in the Red Flag Exercise history that two brothers faced off in command positions.
An Indian Air Force SU-30 Fighter lands at Nellis
An Indian Air Force SU-30 Fighter lands at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., August 6, 2008 for participation in Red Flag 08-4. This marks the first time in history that the Indian Air Force has participated in a Red Flag exercise here at Nellis.
U.S. Air Force Photo by Senior Airman Larry E. Reid Jr.
If you have not seen jet fighters in a dog fight live, it is a marvel to watch. This Journalist, for years has watched air to air combat exercises in Nevada and Arizona and it is wonder to watch. Having never seen actual combat, it is the closest thing to the real thing which you can hope never to witness for real.
The Red team puts base of operations on the west side of Nellis range, Tolicha Peak, between Tonopah and Beatty. The Blue team sets up in the east over Delmar Dry Lake east of Alamo.
The mission is for the Blue Team to destroy Red Team targets and the Red Team tries to keep them from completing their mission.
Digital Journal will attempt to get some photo’s of the actual air combat coming up in a few weeks and share them with our readership. There are several viewing areas that should provide a view of the action. These exercises includes day and night launches.
These air combat games have been taking place since 1975 and give pilots from the US and around the world the needed training to successfully complete their missions when in combat. It is also an effort to coordinate and give experience to foreign partners in working in unison with US forces.
F-15C Eagle from Kadena Air Base  Japan
F-15C Eagle from the 67th Fighter Squadron at Kadena Air Base, Japan, blasts off the runway at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., on Oct 22.
Air Force photo by Chief Master Sgt. Gary Emery
The list of past participants is extensive and includes Australia, Bahrain, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Japan, Korea, NATO, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Thailand, and the United Kingdom to name just a few.
Unfortunately, Nellis AFB is no longer accepting any more applications for Aviation Photography Day on August 26-27. It takes time to receive security clearance.
The Red Flag exercises take place four times a year and will once again fill the Nevada desert skies with dog fights and bright lights. This is training at its best, and the US Air Force continues to be inclusive with its alliances from around the world sharing tactics and technology. Most importantly it is creating and fostering a world wide coalition of fighter pilots who are familiar with each other to make their mission both successful and safe while suppressing aggressors to world wide peace. The best defense is a good offense.
Las Vegas is more than the home of gambling and one of the top entertainment cities in America, which bring artists the highest ticket revenues, and considered by many to be the new world capitol of entertainment. Las Vegas is also the home of some of the finest military fighter pilots and military training anyone can receive on the planet. It's Red Flag exercises and it's time for a dog fight, Vegas style.
More about Air force, Nellis afb, Las vegas, Red flag, F-16
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