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Swamp Foxes deploy to Saudi Arabia for expeditionary force rotation

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Jim St. Clair
  • 169th Fighter Wing/ Public Affairs

Approximately 300 Airmen and a contingent of F-16CJ Fighting Falcon aircraft from the South Carolina Air National Guard’s 169th Fighter Wing have deployed to Prince Sultan Air Base (PSAB), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

During the next several months, the SCANG will support U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) by preserving operational depth, staging joint forces and projecting overwhelming combat power in the region. This is the SCANG’s largest deployment since the summer of 2018 when they supported an Air Expeditionary Force rotation to Kuwait.

“Swamp Fox Airmen are once again honored to deploy in support of our great nation’s national security objectives,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Akshai Gandhi, 169th Fighter Wing commander. “Our Citizen-Airmen are fully integrated with our active component brothers and sisters to partner with our allies in the Central Command area of responsibility to deliver air power where and when needed. As we have done numerous times in the past, the Swamp Foxes will illustrate the force multiplying capabilities of our air reserve component forces.” 

While deployed to PSAB, the 169th Fighter Wing will be attached to the 378th Air Expeditionary Wing. This deployment is defensive in nature with the intent to increase defensive capabilities against potential threats in the region.

“The Swamp Foxes are fully prepared to support the CENTCOM mission and execute the National Security Strategy,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Shaun Bowes, 157th Fighter Squadron commander. “We will train alongside partner nations in efforts to defend American interests and bring stability to the region. Our Airmen have trained extensively to execute any mission that our F-16s may be called upon to do. We look forward to proudly representing the Air National Guard and the state of South Carolina as we execute our federal mission.”