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380AEW Article

Joint service participation in Dubai Airshow 2017

  • Published
  • By By Tech. Sgt. Anthony Nelson Jr, 380th Air Expeditionary Wing

Airmen, Sailors and Marines across U.S. Central Command displayed 10 Airframes and eight different weapons systems during the 2017 Dubai Airshow.

The U.S. participated in the Dubai Airshow, a biennial event, to demonstrate a commitment to regional security, highlight the flexibility of airpower, and to strengthen military-to-military relationships with regional partners.

“It’s truly amazing how the team came together [MARCENT, NAVCENT, AFCENT, and 380th AEW] and represented their combatant command well and demonstrated a can-do attitude throughout the Airshow,” said Lt. Col. Brank Folken, 380th Mission Support lead for the Dubai Airshow.

The UAE hosts more than 4,000 U.S. service members and provides critical support for U.S. operations, goals, and objectives.

Integration with partners within the region enhanced the benefit of the U.S. presence, mitigates resource constraints, and expands the reach of the U.S. military and allies.

“It’s important for the U.S. Navy to showcase the MH-60S Seahawk at the Airshow because it’s a widely flown aircraft across many nations,” said Lt. Andrew Wilson, MH-60S pilot currently aboard the USS America. “It’s great to meet those who fly a similar aircraft and compare and contrast how we use the aircraft.”  

For the U.S. military, the Dubai Airshow is an illustration of commitment to build additional capabilities and capacity while strengthening relationships. Additionally, the U.S. presence improves collaboration and interoperability among collation and allied nations.

Capt. Willie Larkins, Deputy Maintenance Boss, recalled the importance of bridge building and the commonalities found amongst U.S. aircraft, sharing like processes and like constraints throughout his encounters with allied aviation officers and leaders during the airshow.

 “Demonstrating our capability with our international partners strengthens our relationships when we are called upon to defend global assets,” said Larkins.

 “Being at the Airshow has given me the opportunity to see and learn of U.S. coalition partners face-to-face,” said Staff Sgt. Christine Lewis, 380th Air Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron. “We want to help each other and help make a better society for the next generation.”

Lewis emphasized her interaction with our partners and how learning about one another is a good start to growing relationships within the region.  

The five day airshow consisted of aerial demonstrations from countries around the world, static displays, and tours of various aircraft. 

“I really enjoyed the aerial demonstration,” said Senior Airman Jeff Mattocks, Communication Technician for the E-3 Sentry. “Meeting new people and answering their questions about my aircraft was the most rewarding part of the airshow for me.”