[Ed. – But don’t crow too soon. It would be no great trick to shoot one down with the kinds of missiles ISIS probably has access to.]
Several A-10 Warthogs assigned to the Indiana AirNational Guard transferred from a deployment to Afghanistan and started arriving in Kuwait on Nov. 17. The day before the A-10s returned, the Defense Department reactivated the 332nd Air Expeditionary Group.
The A-10s were part of a package of aircraft that also included MQ-9 Reapers to better target and attack ISIS militants and support the Iraqi military. A-10 pilots will start flying missions in Iraq “as early as this week,” the New York Times reported.
The A-10s will return to Iraq to fly combat missions even after Air Force leaders have fought to retire the fleet. Air Force generals said the shrinking defense budget has forced the service to kill the fleet to pay for other programs like the Joint Strike Fighter.
Nicknamed the Warthog, the A-10 is well beloved by ground combat troops as the aircraft is a trusted provider of close air support.