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 Sep 10 2021

Multinational aircraft support JTAC training during Ample Strike 2021

NAMEST, Czech Republic The multinational Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) exercise Ample Strike started with Allied aircraft taking off from bases in the Czech Republic and abroad.

One main base for the live-fly/live-fire exercise is 22nd helicopter base at Namest nad Oslavu with its nearby training areas at Bechyně and Boletice, where among others the Texas National Guard has deployed their MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial systems (UAS).

The US MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial system's (UAS) participation enabled enable Czech and international participants to become acquainted with and practice state-of-the-art combat technology

"The US MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial system's (UAS) participation in this year's Czech-led exercise Ample Strike 2021is the result of a two-year effort by a team whose goal was to enable Czech and international participants to become acquainted with and practice state-of-the-art combat technology," said Colonel Aleš Cápal, Exercise Director during Ample Strike.

German Eurofighters and Hungarian JAS-39 Gripen flew in from their respective home bases at Lechfeld and Kecskeméth to fly Close Air Support (CAC) missions for the JTACs on the ground. 

MQ-9 Reapers and the German Learjet, also stationed at Namest, as well as two Czech L-159 fighters out of Čáslav took off to enable the training. A Czech Mi-24/35 attack helicopter launched from a forward arming and refuelling point to conduct live firing at the Ondřejov air shooting range.

"The highlight of the exercise will be live firing to create theatre realistic training and multinational cooperation. Ample Strike is the largest live exercise of the Czech Armed Forces this year, and it has had a great lift off from the very beginning," said Ample Strike Deputy Exercise Director of, Lieutenant Colonel Michal Voltr.

US Air Force F-15s flying out of Lakenheath Air Base in the United Kingdom and using air-to-air refuelling

"We are also receiving support from US Air Force F-15s flying out of Lakenheath Air Base in the United Kingdom and using air-to-air refuelling to get here," Colonel Cápal added pointing out underscoring the truly multinational environment allowing JTACs to work with several air platforms and gain valuable currency training. 


Story by Allied Air Command Public Affairs Office

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USAF F-15s flying from their base in the UK with the aid of air to air refueling worked with JTACs during the exercise. Photo courtesy of USAF.
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Armed Czech L-159 fighters operating in pairs to provide close air support to JTACs on Exercise Ample Strike. Photo courtesy of Czech Air Force.
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Ground crew of a US MQ-9 Reaper preparing for another mission during its deployment on Exercise Ample Strike. Photo courtesy of Czech Air Force.

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