American air patrols of Iceland have concluded, and troops were bid farewell at a ceremony held last Monday.
In an announcement posted on the official site of the Icelandic Coast Guard (LHG), American and NATO forces were bid a fond farewell as their airspace patrols of Iceland come to a close. From here, they will make their way to Estonia, to conduct airspace exercises there.
LHG Director Georg Kristinn Lárusson thanked the servicemen for their work over the past weeks, and he expressed special thanks to those American airmen who have been to Iceland before and know the conditions well.
Lt. Col. Jeffrey Beckel (above, on the left) thanked LHG and related parties on behalf of the air squad for their cooperation. By all accounts, the exercises had gone exceptionally well.
As reported, air patrols were conducted by the Air National Guard of Westfield, Massachusetts. 150 servicepeople took part in the project, in addition to employees of the Combined Air Operations Center in Uedem, Germany. The air patrol brought with it four F-15C fighter planes and a KC-135 fueling plane.
These exercises were not related to recent news that American forces will be patrolling the North Atlantic for Russian submarines.
As Iceland has no standing army, but is a member of NATO, the country regularly allows other NATO countries to conduct air patrol exercises around the country.