The US Air Force is currently working with the air arms of Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia, Croatia and the Czech Republic for Exercise Load Diffuser 17. The exercise, which will continue until around June 9, is centred upon the Hungarian Air Force’s Kecskemét air base.
The US contingent comprises around 200 airmen, including crews to support eight F-16Cs from the 180th Fighter Wing at Swanton, Ohio and two C-130H Hercules from the 179th Airlift Wing at Mansfield, Ohio.
The Ohio National Guard and Hungary have been paired through the National Guard State Partnership Program for more than two decades.
According to a press release from the US Department of Defence: “Exercises such as Load Diffuser 17 that allow Air National Guard units to conduct military-to-military engagements with their state partners are essential to strengthening relationships with allied and partner nations, helping to maintain joint readiness and interoperability, and reassure European allies and partners.”