USAF and RAAF to develop munitions to support ISIS-combat mission
The air forces of the US and Australia have partnered to co-develop military weapons to support Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve and Operation Okra.
Through the partnership, both countries will construct eight 500lb joint direct attack munitions for the fight against ISIS.
Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) leading aircraftman Stefan said: “We are fighting the same war.
“Communicating with the Americans has been so easy.
"They’ve been able to teach us so much that has helped us with our jobs and vice-versa as well.”
The countries participating in the mission against ISIS contribute aerial refuelling, armament building and conduct strikes.
US Air Force (USAF) Munitions Flight Officer in Charge 1st lieutenant Leigh Ann said: “Working with coalition partners brings to light the scope of what we are doing out here.
“The mission that we are working has a world-wide effect and it is awesome to see how the small day-to-day interactions result in big, strategic missions and accomplishments.
"I think that is what makes this environment so special, multiple countries working together for a common goal.”
The Air Forces Central Command said that nearly 99% of all weapons employed have been precision guided.
As of 2014, both RAAF F/A-18 Hornets and F/A-18 Super Hornets together completed 2,101 sorties and achieved 16,146 hours, as well as dropping more than 1,630 munitions during Operation Okra.
Operation Inherent Resolve is carried out by the US and its coalition partners, while Operation Okra is Australian Defence Force's contribution to the international effort to combat ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
Image: The USAF and RAAF munition technicians at an undisclosed location in Southwest Asia. Photo: courtesy of US Air Force photo by Senior Airman Tyler Woodward.