Hans van der Wilt and Bas Stubert report for GMAP from Graf Ignatievo Air Base; Bulgaria. Thracian Thunder 2016 was held here during January-March 2016. Twelve A-10C Thunderbolds from 23rd Fighter Group, also known as “The Flying Tigers”, based at Moody AFB participated in this exercise together with Bulgarian Su-25 Frogfoots and MiG-29’s. In support of Operation Atlantic Resolve, the U.S. Air Force deployed these A-10 Thunderbolts to Europe as a continuation of their theater security packages. Airmen and support equipment were also deployed from the historic Flying Tigers 23rd Wing at Moody Air Force Base, Ga. to locations in Central and Eastern European NATO countries; including Graf Ignatievo, Bulgaria.
This theather security package mission is an ongoing way the U.S. helps meet security commitments in Europe. These A-10s will conduct training alongside NATO allies and partners to strengthen interoperability and to demonstrate U.S. commitment to the security and stability of Europe.