6/26/2014 - WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Air Force officials announced June 25, Moody Air Force Base, Ga, was selected as the preferred alternative for the A-29 potential stateside Afghan training location, with Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho, and Shaw Air Force Base, SC, being reasonable alternatives.
The U.S. Air Force followed its formal basing process to determine the
most suitable location for a contingent of 20 A-29 aircraft for use in
Afghan Air Force pilot and maintenance training.
The Department of the Air Force will purchase the aircraft for the
Afghan Air Force, on behalf of Combined Security Transition
Command-Afghanistan, using the Department of Defense's Afghanistan
Security Forces Fund appropriation.
According to DoD officials, the plan to implement this temporary
stateside training option will ensure the Afghan Air Force receives the
support and training necessary to safely and effectively employ a
platform for conducting air interdiction and close air support
operations within their country.
Moody was chosen as the preferred alternative, following site surveys
conducted by the Air Force at three candidate bases. The installations
were evaluated on a range of operational and infrastructure requirements
and, upon completion of an environmental analysis, a final basing
decision will be made.
"Moody AFB was selected as the preferred alternative because the
airfield and airspace are available without disruption during the
required timeframe, and suitable facilities are immediately available
for the new occupants to move into," said Timothy K. Bridges, Deputy
Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Installations. "Moody AFB is
the lowest cost option."
The A-29 is a multi-role, fixed wing aircraft that provides the Afghan
Air Force with an indigenous air interdiction, close air support
capability, and aerial reconnaissance capabilities to support the
country's counter insurgency operations. It is designed to operate in
extremely rugged terrain, and provides an ideal capability for this air
The provision of the A-29 Light Air Support program will increase the
Afghan Air Force's capacity in airborne self-defense for its government
The DoD has determined a stateside training option is the most feasible
to deliver capability to the Afghan Air Force. Under current plans, the
A-29 may arrive at the host base as early as September 2014 for initial
cadre training, but the first Afghan trainees are expected to begin
training in February 2015.
All aircraft are planned to be provided to the Afghan Air Force
following this training. The initial proposed commitment for this
training mission entails a limited presence at the base from 2014 into