A dozen U.S. Air Force fighter jets have arrived in the Middle East to beef up U.S. Central Command’s airpower amid threats from Russia and Iran.
The deployment of additional fighter jets was reported by the U.S. Air Force Central Command.
It is noted that the 421st Expeditionary Fighter Squadron arrived from Hill Air Force Base in Utah. These aircraft will help defend interests, promote regional security and safeguard freedom of navigation in the region.
“In coordination with our regional allies, partners and the U.S. Navy, the F-35’s will partner with A-10 and F-16s already in theater helping monitor the Strait of Hormuz,” the news release says.
This comes after Iran seized a commercial ship in the Persian Gulf and Russia tried to shoot down a U.S. reconnaissance drone over Syria.
The F-35’s increased capacity and capability will allow the U.S. to fly in contested airspace across the theater if required. This deployment demonstrates the U.S.’s commitment to ensure peace and security in the region, through maritime support and support to the coalition’s enduring mission to defeat ISIS in Syria. Due to operational security and host nation requests, we cannot discuss the length of the deployment or specific locations.