81st FS receives new A-29s, prepares for future

An A-29 Super Tucano lands on the flight line, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

An A-29 Super Tucano lands on the flight line, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

An A-29 Super Tucano taxis in, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

An A-29 Super Tucano taxis in, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

Joe Johnson, Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) avionics technician, taxis an A-29 Super Tucano, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. SNC is an American privately held electronic systems provider and systems integrator, and are the primary technicians and pilot instructors of the A-29s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

Joe Johnson, Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) avionics technician, taxis an A-29 Super Tucano, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. SNC is an American privately held electronic systems provider and systems integrator, and are the primary technicians and pilot instructors of the A-29s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

An A-29 Super Tucano arrives at Moody Air Force Base, April 24, 2018.  The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

An A-29 Super Tucano arrives at Moody Air Force Base, April 24, 2018. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

Contractors from the Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) perform a post-flight inspection on an A-29 Super Tucano, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. SNC is an American privately held electronic systems provider and systems integrator, and are the primary technicians and pilot instructors of the A-29s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

Contractors from the Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) perform a post-flight inspection on an A-29 Super Tucano, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. SNC is an American privately held electronic systems provider and systems integrator, and are the primary technicians and pilot instructors of the A-29s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

Contractors from the Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) perform a post-flight brief for an A-29 Super Tucano, April 24, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. SNC is an American privately held electronic systems provider and systems integrator, and are the primary technicians and pilot instructors of the A-29s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

Contractors from the Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) perform a post-flight brief for an A-29 Super Tucano, April 24, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. SNC is an American privately held electronic systems provider and systems integrator, and are the primary technicians and pilot instructors of the A-29s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

Joe Johnson, Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) avionics technician, unscrews an access panel on an A-29 Super Tucano, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. SNC is an American privately held electronic systems provider and systems integrator, and are the primary technicians and pilot instructors of the A-29s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

Joe Johnson, Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) avionics technician, unscrews an access panel on an A-29 Super Tucano, April 26, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. SNC is an American privately held electronic systems provider and systems integrator, and are the primary technicians and pilot instructors of the A-29s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

A total air temperature (TAT) sensor cover rests over the TAT sensor, of an A-29 Super Tucano, April 24, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. A TAT sensor gauges input to an air data computer in order to enable computation of static air temperature and as such true airspeed. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

A total air temperature (TAT) sensor cover rests over the TAT sensor, of an A-29 Super Tucano, April 24, 2018, at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. A TAT sensor gauges input to an air data computer in order to enable computation of static air temperature and as such true airspeed. The 81st Fighter Squadron received the aircraft to help continue the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces. The aircraft will be used by the Afghan Air Force for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Erick Requadt)

MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. --

A new wave of A-29 Super Tucanos arrived in support of the 81st Fighter Squadron’s training mission, April 24 and 26, here.

The A-29s will aid in the continuation of the Afghan light air support training mission, which ultimately provides Afghan pilots with the capabilities of finding, tracking, and attacking targets either on their own or in support of ground forces.

"The A-29 program has been an integral part of the U.S. government's overall 'Building Partnership Capacity' efforts around the world and immediately supports the development of an indigenous air force in Afghanistan," said Brig. Gen. Christopher Craige, formally acting commanding general at Train, Advise, Assist Command-Air (TAAC-Air).

"This rapidly developed program for Afghanistan is unique for the A-29 development because this is the first time USAF pilots and maintainers have been trained as instructors to conduct training for Afghan students in the United States."

Designed to operate in high temperatures and in extremely rugged terrain, the A-29 is a highly maneuverable fourth-generation weapons system capable of delivering precision guided munitions. The aircraft is being used by the Afghan air force (AFF) for close-air attack, air interdiction, escort and armed reconnaissance.

Lt. Col. Ryan Hill, 81st Fighter Squadron commander, explained that training Afghan pilots and maintainers, to counter the terror threat in Afghanistan, has significant strategic implications for the U.S.

“We have been engaged in a struggle against these terrorists for over 16 years, and there is still plenty of work to be done,” Hill said. “Providing the Afghans with the ability to fight these enemies themselves relieves our own forces while strengthening the Afghan military and providing them with a great source of national pride.

“The Afghan pilots and maintainers we have trained here at Moody have been in combat for over two years now and have done an incredible job,” Hill continued. “At significant personal risk, they have pushed the Taliban back, regaining several provinces, and all the while having no fratricide or confirmed civilian casualties. This is an amazing accomplishment for a fledgling air force. The Afghans have a lot to be proud of, and are taking enormous steps toward a sustainable peace.”

An AFF A-29 pilot, who can’t be identified for security reasons, said sometimes a nation needs their military to pressure the enemy in order to develop peace and stability.

“The AAF plays a major role in this,” said one Afghan A-29 pilot. “We are helping the peace process. When an A-29 is overhead, it gives motivation to the ground troops, and the enemy realizes they can be struck anywhere and will feel the pressure to come to the peace table. This is how we will bring peace and stability to Afghanistan.”

(Some quotes sourced from previous articles; “Afghan Air Force receives first four A-29s,” and “A-29s arrive at Kabul in time for fighting season”)