2015 Event Review

2015 NATO TIGER MEET, from May 4-16, 2015
Location: 3rd Main Jet Base, Konya, Turkey
Admission: Accredited media only
Parking: N/A
Value: Excellent
Rating out of 10: None, not an air show
 
Red Flag emblem
2015 NATO TIGER MEET

NATO Tiger Meet 2015 was held on May 4th to 16th, at the 3nd Main Jet Base at Konya. Konya is located in the central region of Turkey, 1200 m above sea level with a population of approximately 1,800,000 persons.

The host squadron this year in Turkey was the 192 Filo from Balikesir with F 16 C/D Block 50. Unfortunately, some of the Tiger Squadrons were involved in other exercises or military operations around the world. Therefore, many had cancelled their participation, and as such this year’s NATO Meet was quite small.

With the difference of social and cultural elements within the training, guest tiger pilots participating NATO Tiger Meet were met with a warm welcome by personnel in local dresses serving sherbet. Flag raising ceremony was executed with the participation of General Abidin ÜNAL, Commander of Combatant Air Force and Air Missile Defence on 04 May 2015.

Thanks to air combat training capability of Anatolian Eagle Training Center, the training was executed efficiently and 300 sorties of mission flights were performed. These missions enabled participants to observe the capabilities of different aircraft and created various opportunities of joint working

The daily flight operations were planned in two packages, in Composite Air Operations (COMAO) and relatively smaller packages (SHADOW WAVE).  Beside the combat aircraft, airborne warning and control aircraft (AWACS), air refueling aircraft, attack helicopters, including search and rescue helicopters almost all of the type of air operations can be effectively enforced. The Turkish Air Force 192nd Tiger Squadron, as part of NATO Tiger Meet union, performs best realistic exercise in the international arena , therefore can find an great opportunity for readiness against today's and future's threats. The organization of the host nation was really brilliant.

The Turkish Air Force presented two fantastic looking F-16's in tiger scheme: one was in yellow-orange-black, and the other was in dark grey-black. The Polish Air Force brought some old tigers to Konya but the surprise was a new grey/blue scheme on one, which looked really fantastic. No new design from the Swiss Air Force. This year the French Air Force have painted a Rafale C in an unusual green color. This tiger, called "Green Monster", which looked definitely brilliant.

For the first time ever for an NTM took part the brand new Boeing E-7T "Peace Eagle", the proud of the Turkish AEWC Command which is located here in Konya. It was a good opportunity to bring this aircraft into an international exercise beside the NATO AWACS E-3A.

Welcome visitors to the base were two legendary Phantom F-4E 2000 from Filo 111, Eskisehir.

Spanish Tiger Squadron will host NATO Tiger Meet in 2016.

The Aviation Magazine would like to thank the host nation especially the Turkish Air Headquarter in Ankara for their great hospitality and assistance on base. Our special thanks to Major Messut Yurtdan and 1st Lt. Umut Uskup.

NATO TIGER MEET Flying participants:

Turkish Air Force
192 Filo (Balikesir), 8 x F 16 C/D Block 50
131 Filo (Konya) 2 x Boeing E-7T „Peace Eagle“

NATO
AEWACS Geilenkirchen, 2 x E-3A Sentry

Polish Air Force
6 Elt (Poznan-Krzesiny), 6 x F 16 C/D Block 52

French Air Force
EC 1/7  BA113, (St.Dizier), 4 x Rafalel C/B
EC 5/330 BA118, (Mont-de-Marsan), Rafale C/B (using EC 1/7 aircraft)

Swiss Air Force
Staffel 11 (Meiringen), 5 x  F/A-18 C/D Hornets

Italian Air Force
21° Gruppe (Grazanisse), 2 x AB 212 CSAR

External Participants
Royal Netherlands Air Force
334 Sqn (Eindhoven), 1 x  KDC-10
Turkish Air Force
131 Filo (Konya), 8 x F-16 C/D Block 30  (Red Air)

Report by Peter Thivessen and Wolfgang Jarisch for The Aviation Magazine

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