Exactly one year after the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, we can try to draw up an initial report on the activities of the Italian Air Force in NATO operations directly related to the conflict.
Below each activity we reproduce links to articles we have written this year
COMBAT AIR PATROL
Italy has deployed a number of Eurofigthers in both Romania and Poland to carry out air policing activities.
A first detachment operated in Romania at the Mihail Kogălniceanu base. This was followed by a detachment at the Krolewo base in Poland, and finally, a new detachment is active in these weeks in Romania, again at Mihail Kogălniceanu.
All four Italian tankers participated in the refuelling activities of NATO fighters engaged in Combat Air Patrol. The KC-767As operated from Pratica di Mare AB mainly over Romania, but we also saw them engaged over Poland.
The transport activity involved sending military aid to Ukraine.
Engaged in transport from Pisa San Giusto AB to Rzeszów we tracked KC-767As, C-130Js and smaller C-27Js.
Air surveillance activity was mainly provided by the Gulfstream E.550 CAEW from Pratica di Mare AB. Missions were carried out over both Romania (more frequent) and Poland.
Since last week, a CAEW has been based at Mihail Kogălniceanu, Romania.
It is probable that some surveillance missions over the western Mediterranean were also carried out by the Beech B350 SPYDR to monitor the movements of Russian naval units. while the SPYDR also carried out some missions over the eastern Mediterranean off the Syrian coast where Russian military installations are located.
- SPYDR on task
- Long day for the Italian SPYDR
- Italian CAEW eastern Mediterranean mission
- New Polish mission for an Italian CAEW
- CAEW new Black Sea theatre mission
SEA PATROL MISSION
In addition to the SPYDR missions, almost all sea patrol missions were carried out by the ATR P-72As based at Sigonella. These took off to monitor the movements of Russian units mainly in the Sicilian Channel, the Ionian Sea and the southern Adriatic.