The United States is continuing to reinforce its posture to deter additional regional actors from joining the fight between Hamas and Israel.
The U.S. Air Forces Central confirmed the deployment of the 494th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron’s F-15E Strike Eagle fighters from RAF Lakenheath in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility on October 13 to bolster the U.S. posture and enhance air operations throughout the Middle East. The deployment of the Strike Eagles was followed yesterday by OSINT trackers who heard the communications of the three tankers involved in the ferry flight.
RAF Lakenheath’s 494th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron’s F-15E Strike Eagle aircraft arrived in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, October 13, to bolster the U.S. posture and enhance air operations throughout the Middle East. pic.twitter.com/u8oFMXweYB
— US AFCENT (@USAFCENT) October 14, 2023
While the official statement did non provide a location, OSINT trackers were quick to verify the rumor about their destination and geolocate the photos released by AFCENT. The aircraft, in fact, landed at Muwaffaq Salti/Al-Azraq Air Base in Jordan, one of the usual deployment locations for US aircraft in the area.
68d = Python03
23d = Python04
They drag 3 F15s from Lakenheath (Cube71)
— LuftHans (@LuftHanzl) October 13, 2023
+ Fuel storage facility (31.8335769, 36.7560536) located 3.4km away from the approximate position of the photographer pic.twitter.com/EUAt5u1JMC
— Føxïę (@SomeFrench1991) October 14, 2023
“The U.S. military is committed to the enduring safety and security across the Middle East,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Alexus G. Grynkewich, 9th Air Force (Air Forces Central) and Combined Forces Air Component Command Commander. “By posturing advanced fighters and integrating with joint and coalition forces, we are strengthening our partnerships and reinforcing security in the region.”
The arrival of the 494th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron follows the 354th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron’s movement into theater with its A-10Cs, increasing U.S. Central Command’s air power in the AOR. These force posture augmentations build on the arrival of the USS Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group, which includes an embarked air wing and accompanying cruisers and destroyers.
UPDATE: NSC Spokesperson John Kirby confirms the USS Dwight D Eisenhower carrier strike group will be headed to the Mediterranean but says it will not join the USS Gerald R. Ford strike group as a second strike group, but will be available in the area if needed. pic.twitter.com/kpaAxbgXfc
— Moshe Schwartz (@YWNReporter) October 11, 2023
A second carrier, the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower, and its carrier strike group are also headed to the Mediterranean Sea. However, National Security Council’s Spokesperson John Kirby confirms the carrier will not join the USS Gerald R. Ford strike group but will be available in the area if needed. In the meanwhile, as these deployments were happening, the U.S. Air Force also initiated the preplanned Bomber Task Force Europe 24-1 at RAF Fairford.
Gelandet! Unsere Eurofighter sind zur Übung #DesertAir23 auf der Al Azraq Base in Jordanien angekommen. Ab morgen üben wir erstmalig gemeinsam mit der jordanischen Luftwaffe und der @usairforce über 🇯🇴. pic.twitter.com/U1t4rsYZN6
— Team Luftwaffe (@Team_Luftwaffe) October 10, 2023