Hill Air Force Base fighter wings deploy F-35 to France

U.S. Air Force Capt. Kristin "BEO" Wolfe, F-35A Lightning II Demonstration Team Pilot, pulls up into the sky during a demonstration practice near Hill Air Force Base, Utah, Mar. 27. Photo Courtesy: Hill Air Force Base

MONT-DE-MARSAN AIR BASE, France, May 11, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — U.S. Air Force F-35A Lightning II fighter aircraft and airmen from the 4th Fighter Squadron, composed of active duty airmen from the 388th Fighter Wing and reservists from the 419th FW at Hill Air Force Base, arrived at Mont-de-Marsan Air Base in France on Monday.

“During their time in the European theater, the 4th FS aircraft will participate in multiple events, including Atlantic Trident 21, underscoring the steadfast U.S. commitment to the region and enhancing interoperability with NATO allies and partners,” said a news release from Hill Air Force Base.

Atlantic Trident 21, taking place at Mont-de-Marsan Air Force Base, May 17-28, is a joint, multinational exercise involving service members from the U.S., France and the U.K., and is aimed at enhancing fourth- and fifth-generation integration, combat readiness and fighting capabilities, through conducting complex air operations in a contested multinational joint force environment, the news release said.

“The F-35A is the U.S. Air Force’s latest fifth-generation fighter,” the news release added. “With its aerodynamic performance and advanced integrated avionics, the F-35A will provide next-generation stealth, enhanced situational awareness, and reduced vulnerability for the United States and allied nations. The F-35A gives the U.S. Air Force and its allies the power to dominate the skies — anytime, anywhere. It’s an agile, versatile, high-performance, 9g capable multirole fighter that combines stealth, sensor fusion and unprecedented situational awareness.”

This is the 388th FW’s third deployment to Europe. The first was the 34th FS deployment to RAF Lakenheath, England, in April 2017. The second was a 421st FS Theater Security Package deployment to Aviano Air Base, Italy in May 2019.


  1. Regarding the F35a aircraft, it is one very noisey aircraft as you can hear it coming 10 miles away. So all the stealth built in is wasted by its noise. It may not even have much ability for evasive manuevers as it is so big and travels too far to make quick turns. I hope they send all those F35’s some where other than Utah.

    Congratulations to this General for her promotion but it seems this next assignment will be her last before retirement.


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