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NEWS | May 24, 2022

Alabama Air National Guard, Romania Complete Exercise

By Sgt. Samuel Hartley, 131st Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

BUCHAREST, ROMANIA - Alabama Air National Guard members from the 117th Air Refueling Wing conducted a week-long joint exercise with the Romanian Ministry of Defense and Romanian Air Force.

U.S. Airmen and Romanian F-16 pilots completed multiple midair refueling exercises to ensure interoperability between the two allied nations.

“This exercise matters for a couple of reasons, one being international cooperation,” said Alabama Air National Guard Col. Mike Adams, 117th Air Refueling Wing detachment commander. “Another reason being it is an established fact that midair refueling increases lethality and operational ability.”

The Romanian military and Alabama National Guard have partnered since 1993, sharing knowledge of equipment, tactics and best practices through numerous force-to-force engagements each year.

Even after nearly 30 years under the Department of Defense National Guard Bureau State Partnership Program, the relationship is still growing, Adams said.

The successful mission during the May exercise will open new doors for similar, more complex and integrated joint training to improve individual and collaborative capabilities.

“It’s all about making the world more stable,” Adams said.

“Through the work that this has taken, the Alabama National Guard and the Romanian military are both getting better and are both showing that if we’ll work together, everybody wins.”