F-15 and KC-135 Presence in Estonia Highlights Capabilities, Demonstrates U.S. Commitment to Allies & Partners
This week, Ämari Airbase hosts several F-15E Strike Eagles from the 492nd Fighter Squadron from RAF Lakenheath and KC-135 stratotankers from the 100th Air Refueling Wing from RAF Mildenhall, England.
On hosting these KC-135 refueling tankers and F-15E aircraft in Estonia, U.S. Chargé d’Affaires Clifford Bond noted, “As President Trump and Secretary Pompeo have stated on many occasions, the United States’ commitment to the collective defense under Article 5 of the Washington Treaty remains ironclad. Hosting these aircraft in Estonia is another example of the importance of air domain awareness, our commitment to regional stability, support for our allies, and the importance of force interoperability. The tankers landing at Amari shows the ability of the U.S. to operate support aircraft far from their home station, in addition to the fighters the tankers support. This significantly increases the coverage our fighters are able to provide.”
During their time in Estonia, these aircraft are helping to demonstrate Ämari’s capacity to host both large and small U.S. and NATO aircraft. The F-15Es also were able to recertify the BAK-14 arresting systems on the runway that are used to catch an aircraft in the event of a runway overrun. In addition, the F-15Es are conducting joint exercises with Estonian Joint Terminal Attack Controllers (JTACs).