U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptors deployed to U.S. Central Command’s area of responsibility as part of a multifaceted show of U.S. support and capability in the wake of increasingly unsafe and unprofessional behavior by Russian aircraft in the region. The Raptors, from Langley Air Force Base, Va.’s 94th Fighter Squadron, are demonstrating the U.S.’ ability to re-posture forces and deliver overwhelming power at a moment’s notice. The F-22’s combination of stealth, aerodynamic performance, and mission systems make it the best fifth-generation fighter in the world.
While in the CENTCOM area, the 94th Fighter Squadron will integrate with coalition forces on the ground and in the air. This rapid deployment and integration into coalition operations is a clear demonstration of the commitment shared by partners, allies, and the U.S. to long-term peace and stability in the region. The U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) is one of the eleven unified combatant commands of the U.S. Department of Defense. Of all seven American regional unified combatant commands, CENTCOM is among four that are headquartered outside their area of operations.
“Russian Forces’ unsafe and unprofessional behavior is not what we expect from a professional air force. Their regular violation of agreed upon airspace deconfliction measures increases the risk of escalation or miscalculation. Alongside our partners and allies, we are committed to improving the security and stability in the region,” said Gen. Michael “Erik” Kurilla, commander of U.S. Central Command.
The Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor is a single-seat, twin-engine, all-weather tactical stealth fighter aircraft developed for the U.S. Air Force. As a product of the Air Force’s Advanced Tactical Fighter (ATF) program the aircraft was designed as an air superiority fighter, but also incorporates ground attack, electronic warfare, and signals intelligence capabilities. Lockheed Martin built most of the F-22’s airframe and weapons systems and conducted final assembly, while Boeing provided the wings, aft fuselage, avionics integration, and training systems.