This is a Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) sponsored exercise to train, evaluate and observe a wide range of NATO Command Structure (NCS). The exercise will enhance Alliance security by maintaining NATO's broad range of interoperability and military capabilities to deter potential adversaries and assure Allies of NATO's ability to defend them.
CAOC Torrejón is the designated STDE21 Air Exercise Director, responsible for coordination and execution of air operations in support of Combat Enhancement Training, Force Integration Training Program and Tactical Exercise phase. CAOC Torrejón put in practice the Deputy Commander Air concept within this Joint exercise.
"Being that the Atlantic is a vital space for the security of Allies, STDE21 allowed us to validate not only effective interoperability among nations, but also to demonstrate a real capacity of the Air and Maritime Component to act in a supporting/support role according the situation," said Brigadier General Sergio Pereira, CAOC Torrejón Command Group Director.
Combined Air Operations Centre Torrejón members meet and discuss plans for their participation in Exercise Steadfast Defender21. CAOC Torrejón controlled the aircraft participating in Exercise Steadfast Defender 21. Photo courtesy of CAOC Torrejón.
3 Turkish F-16s deployed to Monte Real Air Base, Portugal directly participated in the exercise. This presence is a visible display of the Alliance's multinational support for collective defence.
CAOC Torrejón is the coordinating authority for all aviation assets. The serialized flight plan is developed together with MARCOM Maritime Air Command.
As usual, Air operations are conducted in accordance with International Civil Aviation Organization procedures and rules of air.