Aircrews assigned to the 305th Air Mobility Wing participated in a Joint Forcible Entry exercise at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Dec. 5-6, 2020.
The aircrews displayed their proficiency and the need for Rapid Global Mobility by supporting the multi-faceted capstone event with two C-17 Globemaster III’s and a KC-10 Extender, from the 305th AMW.
The exercise acts as the culminating event for the U.S. Air Force Weapons School located on Nellis AFB while simultaneously allowing various weapon systems to test and train with new technology and strategic approaches.
“We were part of the Bravo Echelon, which is the airland operations phase,” said Capt. Noah Clark, 6th Airlift Squadron pilot. “After the airdrop portion provides containment, we deliver the airland packages into the simulated enemy territory, while under close air support from the fighters. An airland package is anything you cannot airdrop, like tanks and helicopters for example.”
There were more than 85 aircraft assets from across the Air Force involved in this exercise. It was the first large scale JFE, since the COVID-19 pandemic, that the 305 AMW has had the opportunity to participate in.
“A large airspace suddenly becomes rather tight when you have all those aircraft trying to deconflict,” said Capt. Trevor Leeming, 6AS instructor pilot. “To an extent, every type of airframe speaks a different ‘language’. To be able to understand each other, with everybody on the same communications, it becomes high-level training in radio discipline and procedures. It is certainly something you need to be prepared for.”
This JFE was designed to simulate entering a well defended enemy territory and open up an operational landing zone.
“This is probably the best training we can get as an aircrew,” said Clark. “It is an opportunity to implement the aircraft tactically, as opposed to flying an instrument approach into a non-threat environment. You really get to practice what you have learned and put it to the test.”