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Tankers at Jeddah
A KC-135E tanker from the Kansas Air National Guard's 190th Air Refueling Group returns to King Abdul Aziz International Airport at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on January 17, 1991, the opening day of the air campaign against Iraq. Tankers played crucial roles in three different aspects of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm: the rapid deployment of large coalition military forces to the region, the sustained readiness of the forces, and the use of forces in large and complex combat operations. Elements of the 190th had been the first tankers to arrive at Jeddah in August 1990. They played a lead role in the 1709th Air Refueling Wing (Provisional). That composite organization represented a new way of doing business by temporarily blending the three major organizational components of the Total Air Force for the duration of the 1990-1991 Persian Gulf crisis. The wing consisted of Air Guard tankers from several states as well as those from the Air Force Reserve and the active Air Force. The 1709th was one of the largest aerial tanker task forces ever assembled. Its intense tanker operations were conducted around-the-clock. Elements of all 13 tanker units then in the Air Guard's force structure participated in the 1990-1991 Persian Gulf crisis. The critical support which Air National Guard tankers provided during operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm was one of the keys to the Allied air campaign. Those tankers carried on a long Air National Guard tradition of dedicated service to the states and nation.
Copyright Notice

Images of these paintings may also be used for educational purposes with an appropriate permission statement, such as: "[name of painting], a National Guard Heritage Painting by [name of artist], courtesy the National Guard Bureau." The U.S. Government retains all copyrights to these paintings. No commercial use is authorized without prior approval.