US military shows off capabilities at Dubai Airshow
By CHRIS CHURCH | STARS AND STRIPES Published: November 13, 2015
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The U.S. military showed off its might at this week’s Dubai Airshow, with an Air Force F-22 Raptor flight demonstration, a B-1 bomber flyby and several static displays.
All four of the Defense Department branches were represented at the show. The Navy brought along its P-8A Poseidon, an aircraft that their allies around the world, including in the Middle East, will be seeing a lot more of next year. The Navy is currently phasing out the P-3 Orion with the Poseidon, which is a Boeing 737 outfitted with specialized equipment to advance the Navy’s anti-submarine, anti-surface warfare, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance efforts.
The P-8A is faster, more efficient and more reliable, said Cmdr. Jason Williamson, executive officer of Patrol Squadron 45, the Navy squadron in charge of the P-8A that was on display.
Also on display at the event were an Air Force C-130J and F-15E; a Marine MV-22 Osprey and KC-130; Navy MH-60R and MH-53 helicopters; and an Army CH-47 helicopter.
Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James took time away from her meetings with industry and military officials to greet U.S. servicemembers at the event.
Many servicemembers participating in the event are currently forward deployed or just finished deployments in the region.
Meeting with the troops, James said, allows her to hear what’s on their minds, while also provide them with updates of work being done in the Pentagon.
“Most of all, I want to thank them for their service and executing the mission in challenging and busy times,” she said.
The U.S. Department of Defense has supported the Dubai Airshow in every event since 2003.