U.S. Airmen from various organizations within U.S. Air Forces Europe – Air Forces Africa participated in Falcon Leap 21, a multinational parachute training exercise led by the Dutch air force at several military installations in the Netherlands. During the exercise, U.S. forces conducted a series of integrated parachute drops alongside NATO allies from Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland and Portugal.
As a multinational parachute exercise, Falcon Leap 21 takes inspiration from Operation Market Garden, an Allied World War II airborne mission. Operation Market Garden’s intent was to capture three major bridges to reach Germany’s industrial heartland. Several commemorations will take place throughout Falcon Leap to honor Operation Market Garden’s 77th anniversary.
“Falcon Leap 21 is an exciting opportunity because it gets to the very heart of USAFE-AFAFRICA’s mission, which is building strong relationships with our European allies and partners as we live, work and train alongside them,” said General Jeff Harrigian, USAFE-AFAFRICA commander. “Celebrating our shared values and experience during events like Falcon Leap reinforces the advantages of our Alliance and strengthens our readiness to respond to any challenge that confronts us.”
U.S. personnel participated in Falcon Leap 21, including Airmen from Headquarters USAFE-AFAFRICA, Ramstein Air Base, Germany; the 2d Air Support Operation Squadron, Vilsek, Germany; the 4th Air Support Operations Group, U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden, Germany; the 57th Rescue Squadron, Aviano AB, Italy; the 86th Operations Support Squadron, Ramstein AB; and the 435th Security Forces Squadron, Ramstein AB. Airmen and C-130J aircraft assigned to the 37th Airlift Squadron, 86th Airlift Wing, Ramstein AB, and the 169th Airlift Squadron, 182d Airlift Wing, Peoria Air National Guard Base, Illinois also supported the exercise.