Fifty-five foreign air force members have graduated a months-long training course on the OH-58D Kiowa during a ceremony at the Performing Arts Center of the Eastern New Mexico University in Roswell, New Mexico.
The pilots and maintenance crew members from the Tunisian Air Force received training on the armed reconnaissance helicopter at the Roswell International Air Center as part of a foreign military sales case managed by the Security Assistance Command.
“This graduation brings together Tunisia’s capability of integrating air-ground operations utilizing the Bell Helicopter OH-58 Kiowa Warrior for observation, utility, and direct fire support” said Col. William Krahling, USASAC’s director of EUCOM/AFRICOM regional operations.
“This is much more than a delivery of aircraft to a partner nation. It is not just about hardware.” Krahling said. “The aircraft and training provides a long term, and hopefully enduring relationship with an important international partner that have been a valued partner since our first trade agreement when our nation was young.”
“USASAC activities play a critical role in U.S. foreign policy by ensuring the safety of not only our men and women in uniform, but also our interoperability with our military partners as they ensure the security of their own sovereign nations around the world,” Krahling said. “While graduations like these are an important milestone, it is just the beginning of a new phase of the continued challenge to ensure stability in Tunisia and here at home in our fight against terrorism.”