The US Air Force has sent six B-52 long-range bombers to the United Kingdom for a series of training activities over Europe.
The B-52 aircraft and over 450 airmen arrived at Royal Air Force Fairford on Thursday from Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana.

NATO spokesperson Oana Lungescu welcomed the deployment, saying:

“This is a routine deployment, but it shows that the US nuclear umbrella protects Europe and demonstrates the unique capabilities the US could bring to Europe in a crisis. The B-52 deployment is yet another sign that the United States is strongly committed to NATO.”

The United States has deployed strategic bombers in Europe at least once a year since 2014. Since then, all three US bomber variants – the B-1, B-2 and B-52 bombers – have deployed to Fairford airbase for exercises with European NATO Allies, including to Exercise Baltops and Exercise Sabre Strike.

RAF Fairford has been an American standby base for bomber operations around Europe for decades.

The current deployment marks the largest deployment of the bombers to Europe since Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003.

It will test how the bombers can conduct missions out of Fairford and will familiarise aircrews with operations over Europe, including the Norwegian Sea, Baltic Sea and the Mediterranean.

The U.S. Strategic Command oversees the United States strategic and nuclear deterrent, including B-52 deployments. Forces assigned to the Command are on watch 24 hours a day, seven days a week to deter strategic attacks against the U.S. and NATO allies.

The B-52 has been in use with the US Air Force since the 1950s and can carry both conventional and nuclear weapons.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
68 Comments
oldest
newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago

We get rid of equipment as standard after a certain time and these have been flying for decades!

I assume much of the aircraft is renewed?

Could have kept a Vulcan squadron!

Mr Robert Marsden
Mr Robert Marsden
2 years ago

It’s all about cost, B-52 is a you said decades old and gone through many sustainment and maintenance programs to keep them flying which cost a small fortune in there own right. They’re yet again talking about engine upgrades for the fuel guzzling monsters they currently use but again this is going to cost a small fortune and as a result the B1-B Lancer is getting the cop in favour of this beast. I would love to still have the Vulcan in the RAF service but it would run everything else around it into the ground if we did at… Read more »

John Robinson
2 years ago

Because Vulcan and Tornado unwent stress on the airframes due to low flying, something the B-52 doesnt do, the Valient was retired early when the RAF changed the V-Force to low level becuase cracks appeared in the wings.

Longtime
Longtime
2 years ago
Reply to  John Robinson

Exactly John the whole V force inc Vulcan suffered fatigue from low level flying Vulcan just absorbed it slightly better hence victor going to a refuelling roll.
Daniele a squadron of Vulcans would of been amazing to retain but now understanding the modifications made to 558 (lowest recorded airframe hours) to keep her in the air for just a few more years, it would’ve been a massive undertaking for an entire squadron.
If the US go down the route publicised for upgrades then it’ll give them 1 hell of a heavy bombing platform with efficiency and accuracy too.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Longtime

John, Longtime, good point on low level.

Thanks.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Longtime

ALCM carried by B52 in the Cold War RGR.

Despite the Voyska PVO’s massive defences the Pentagon estimated that 75% of the bombers they flew to the Soviet Union would still hit their targets, due to jamming, Stand off Cruise Missiles, and the sheer scale of the effort needed by the Soviets to defend the Russian interior.

EW has no doubt improved even more since then. Against peer enemies with a decent SAM defence there are B1’s and B2’s as well.

Longtime
Longtime
2 years ago
Reply to  Longtime

RGR you know full well there’s no experts here 😉
Essentially yes they are giant Bullet/missile magnets but they were never really designed to do any of the live firing jobs they’ve been used for, wasn’t it supposed to be a stand off missile launcher 1st, big ol bomber 2nd. I’d almost argue that they were never expected to return from there Nuclear missions if they ever had to launch them.

Think when it comes to nam it’s a miracle they didn’t lose more than they did it’s a big arse barn with wings.

Will
Will
2 years ago
Reply to  Longtime

I was in ‘nam, Cheltenam

andy reeves
2 years ago
Reply to  John Robinson

shame the u.k can’t try to purchase the two B1B lancers in reserve for reactivation at the AMARG facility in arizona( google AMARG INVENTORY and see where the R.A.F might be better using their budget

Paul T
Paul T
2 years ago
Reply to  John Robinson

Imagine a Vulcan made today, Tornado”s Avionics,EJ200 Engines, modern construction techniques,I read that in service it wasn’t the easiest Aircraft to detect by Radar,so a bit of Stealth before it became known as widely as today,it would save the need to re-invent the wheel.

Longtime
Longtime
2 years ago
Reply to  Paul T

Would be a lovely aircraft and like you say why reinvent the wheel but, surely best to use the F35 avionics and sensors if your building today, also I’d stick to the Olympus 300 engines from the late B2 variant which push out 20,000 lbf compared to EJ200s 17500 lbf seems silly to squeeze a different engine in when they aren’t as powerful without using reheat which the Vulcan never had and pretty sure it would kill the howl off and we can’t have that.

Mark Doane
Mark Doane
2 years ago
Reply to  John Robinson

We could have converted the concorde to a long rNge supersonic bomber

Julian1
Julian1
2 years ago

The B52 is almost entirely rebuilt, and possibly not just once. Very limited to stand-off ( a very long way) I’d imagine

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Julian1

Nimrod might have given us an excellent stand-off capability…had it not been cancelled by Cameroon! Great decisions that guy made….including the shite we ae in now. A very good reason for not allowing schoolboys to become PM….Blair was just as useless!

Sean
Sean
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Nimrod was a mess. Shouldn’t been cancelled when they realised all the airframes were different and that they couldn’t be fitted with new standard wings off a production line. Had they ditched the Nimrod for a new aircraft the project might well have succeeded and not over-run it’s budget so disasterously.

Sean
Sean
2 years ago
Reply to  Sean

“Should’ve” not “Shouldn’t”…
Predictive text ?‍♂️

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Sean

Indeed, had they gone for new airframes they wouldn’t have had the problems. How come BAE allowed the MOD Bean Counters to cut costs by utilising old airframes….you mean that nobody was aware that a hand-built aircraft was different from a CAD design. I believe the gaps were as much as 100mm in places. Does anyone actually talk to each other in the rarefied world of MOD procurement?

HF
HF
2 years ago
Reply to  Sean

That is just the story the Tories put out. expert evidence to the House Of Commons Defence Committee illustrates both the rank dishonesty and shortsightedness of the cancellation:-

https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201012/cmselect/cmdfence/761/761vw15.htm

Part 3 is particularly interesting in terms of Nimrod’s ‘problems’ and its readiness to enter service.

Will
Will
2 years ago
Reply to  Sean

Bang on HF

Frank62
Frank62
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Pesky Cameroon scuppered the Nimrod fleet? Learnt something today, LOL.

Nick C
Nick C
2 years ago

There is some good footage on YouTube of two of these arriving last week in what looks like quite a cross wind, interesting flying.
And yes Daniele, they are being continuously upgraded, current plans are to replace the radar and also to reengine the aircraft as well. Current engines at present are 1950’s technology so updating will give a huge change in fuel use and maintenance. And The last B52 pilot has not yet been born!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Nick C

?

Julian1
Julian1
2 years ago

You can arrested for that!

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Nick C

That is no way to speak about the Royal Family. Absolutely treasonous!!!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

LOL.

Exactly. Politics aside I am a proud monarchist and that would be the wrong target!

Herodotus
2 years ago

Maybe RGR is referring to the massive march planned for this Saturday? I shall be there with my [email protected]@cks to Brexit hat on. Hopefully Her Majesty & hubby will turn out too….so long as he isn’t driving that black cab of his!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago

Funnily enough when I was a security guard in a busy shopping centre it was always the guilty we detained who complained / shouted /made the most fuss / had the most excuses! Swap those words for anything suitable for your massive march and we have the same point. Or, vote into power a party who’s manifesto pledges to reverse brexit! 200,000 marchers throwing toys out of pram is insignificant to the 17 million plus, who like others I know, are the silent majority just looking on sadly and getting on with their lives!! Hope the weather’s good for you… Read more »

Herodotus
2 years ago

Yes HF, and very seductive too. The US is upping the anti on this one too. Do they think that they might miss out on the chance of [email protected] us again!

barry white
barry white
2 years ago

Herodotus
A million
Like your 700000 last time when the police said there was about 180000
So if you are saying this time theres going to be a million losers there i suppose the spin will be 2 million

Herodotus
2 years ago

I was going to give a lecture on Edmund Burke, the great C18th politician and philosopher. But, if you google him, I am sure that you will find out what an MP’s duties are regarding the electorate. The fact that most MP’s are following their conscience is precisely what they should be doing. That is what I am doing! And Barry….where you there….I was! No, you were sat on your fat arse somewhere!

HF
HF
2 years ago

A leaflet through the door is supposed to counter years of lies from right wing newspapers whose only interest is the advancement of their power and riches ? One of the odd things about leavers is how they think it’s the ‘establishment’ and ‘elites’ that want to stay in the EU. Farage is part of that establishment as is Fox and Johnson. They want to turn the UK into the 51st state, aping the USA, with the destruction of workers rights and the removal of controls and regulations on big business so they can do as they like, regardless of… Read more »

Julian1
Julian1
2 years ago

Has anybody ever met a non-uk national who think’s Brexit’s a good idea? Everyone thinks we’re bonkers. You have to ask yourself is Brexit just another example of British eccentricity? All my American colleagues think we’re mad – and that’s our allies. Still, when the UK starts breaking up we’ll see whether it’s such a good idea. “The Dubai of Europe” is what Little England will become. For the record, I am a proud Brit but NOT a little Englander

Elliott
Elliott
2 years ago

You obviously have a very limited experience with Americans. Let me guess all New Yorkers or from around there.
Almost all Americans despise the EU and genuinely have no idea why the citizens of sovereign nation would hand over their sovereignty to a foreign power. What confuses us even more is the complete weakness of Theresa May. Which is almost as astounding as a parliament that says let’s have a referendum then ignore it.

julian1
julian1
2 years ago

Elliot, you’re right on one point – I am generally limited to the East Coast, though many of my colleagues have actually traveled in Europe. “Almost all Americans despise the EU” – come now, that’s one hell of a statement. Many of them may be envious of the accessible health system, sponsored child care and strict food standards the EU allows us – its citizens. Perhaps there are some who feel threatened by its very successful exports of cars, civil aircraft and fine foods. On the other hand, I do understand the US frustration with European NATO members NOT stepping… Read more »

Elliott
Elliott
2 years ago

There is a very substantial difference between Brexit and what a few idiots in Cali call CALEXIT. The difference is secession (not exiting) is illegal and forbidden by both the outcome of the Civil War (better described as The War Between the States), laws passed by Congress and Constitutionally by the decisions of the Supreme Court. We already saw the result of attempted secession from the US it ended in death and destruction with America’s bloodiest war. To compare the UK’s membership of the EU to a States membership in the US is a bit of a false equivalency. For… Read more »

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Hmmm….lousy analogy. The silent majority are they…you mean the 37% of the electorate that voted leave. Well, they are certainly silent….at least I have the conviction of my politics and am prepared to get off my fat arse and fight for the future of this country. Nigel Barrage has started a march on London (kind of thinks that he is Mussolini….snigger) at least one hundred supporters were there to see him off. Bet they stopped at first pub to get pissed as well! There will be over a million on the march on the 23rd…..a million people that are prepared… Read more »

HF
HF
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Most of them believed what they were told about the ease of trade deals, how much would be available for the NHS etc. It was made to sound like it was like leaving a golf club or local football club

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Sorry, In the wrong place.
Yes HF, and very seductive too. The US is upping the anti on this one too. Do they think that they might miss out on the chance of [email protected] us again!

HF
HF
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Given that Trump & Putin were in favour of the UK leaving you’d think that would be a big enough indication that it was a bad idea.

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

It might have given a clue to those tat are inclined towards the special relationship!!! Trump is a businessman….he will own us if he can!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

I knew you’d pick that up but I still stated any way as you know full well what I meant. That’s how votes work. If not every general election will be void! HF it was made nothing of the sort. Very easy to say that now. How about I list everything Cameron Khan Osborne Blair Major and every other globalist puppet under the sun said? Same thing. I’ve explained the reasons countless times on this very forum but you remoaners are all singing with hands in your ears! And then ignore every point I make as to why Brexit is… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Do you not think a businessman might actually make a better PM than a plastic politician from Oxbridge or Corbyn from whatever corner he surfaced from??

Genuine thought. They get things done, make money, run things efficiently?
Not Trump as such but the concept?

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

What, you mean like Nigel Mirage. The modern day Cicero….’in a pig’s arse friend’!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Nope. Not Farage. He never entered my mind in that businessman comment actually.

But so typical to actually ignore a perfectly honest and Frank question!

So I give you another chance….

Paul T
Paul T
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

julian1-you are correct in that Parliament didn’t ask for the Referendum,it was Cameron”s idea to lance the boil of Europe once and for all, obviously it didn’t work out well, but it couldn’t have taken place without Parliament”s approval, they had to vote for it ,if they hadn’t we would not be where we are now.

HF
HF
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

“HF it was made nothing of the sort. Very easy to say that now” it was easy to say it from the start, once that bus with the lies about money for the NHS turned up. It wasn’t the only lie – the scare story about ’75m Turks’. As for Putin & Trump,Russia has always wanted to weaken European unity and Trump is peddling the sort of lies the leading Brexiters have said. Rees-Mogg has apparently moved his investment company to Dublin, Farage applied for German passports for his children, The Sun is owned by a plastic yank who wouldn’t… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

HF. One of the fallacies you remainers constantly shout from the rooftops is this supposed influence on voters by who said what when. In that case how come HMGs own taxpayer paid for leaflet put through every door did not influence? But comments from leavers did? Laughable. What is enlightening in this whole sad story is that the very reasons people voted leave, decades of opinion being formed over everything from lack of border control, sovereignty, the ECHR, lack of ability to form an Independent trade policy, the list is endless , is suddenly null and void because so and… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

And as for saying things.

Both Labour and Conservatives manifesto pledges to leave the EU Single Market and Customs Union.

Parties that include remain MPs, including 200 odd labour constituencies who voted leave yet their Mps, according to Herodotus, are acting with their conscience and doing the exact reverse!!!

I agree with Herodotus. What a mess this country finds itself in.

Not the people who honestly voted, but the establishment, and their Remainer fan boys desperate to escape democracy and shape it to their liking.

Cheers.

Julian1
Julian1
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Why is it the Brexit argument has been reduced to “17m voted to leave and it is parliaments democratic responsibility to take us out the EU (and customer union) and anything else is a betrayal yawn yawn yawn.” When was last time you heard any kind of economic or citizens benefits to leave other than a few ideals? It seems to me the real attraction is the opportunity to stick 2 fingers up and follow through on the obsolete vote from nearly 3 years ago rather than promote and celebrate ANY real advantages for uk residents and nationals. The Brexiters… Read more »

Elliott
Elliott
2 years ago
Reply to  Julian1

Because regardless of the economic benefits of leaving or remaining (and I think they are better leaving) a country is made out of more than money. Especially if they are a democracy or a republic the terms are specifically is called “Republican Virtue” or the “Civic Religion”. Basically what they boil down to is that government is the servant not master, that a man once elected will regardless of personal belief will do his level best to deliver the needs and desires of his DISTRICT. Will you ever find this paragon of Republican Virtue? Rarely if at all. What is… Read more »

julian1
julian1
2 years ago
Reply to  Julian1

Well Elliot, if your country allows us a trade deal where UK can sell in cars, aircraft, high tech, banking, services and all sorts of other things that America does very well in its own right and with which we try and compete to some degree (a lot more effectively as part of the EU), then I will accept your argument. But as that won’t happen, we might be able to sell some Jam, chocolate, Whiskey, Shortbread, movies, EPL and fashion (whooppee do) whilst allowing the UK tax payer to be fleeced by Atlantic Health System and such like and… Read more »

Rob
Rob
2 years ago

Aren’t the B52s a bit like Triggar’s broom? Air frame aside I bet most systems have been replaced.

Awesome, if not terrifying, sight.

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Rob

Railway preservation societies are the best at this. If all you have is the engine’s whistle, it’s still a rebuild!

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 years ago

Upgrades underway for the B52
“USAF To Fly the B-52 into the 2050s with New Engines, Radars”
https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/defense/2018-04-13/usaf-fly-b-52-2050s-new-engines-radars

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

A 100 year old aircraft….still operational! Do you think that we could bring back WW1 Vickers tanks…..or the Sopwith Camel, RE 8 etc. That’s the timescale we are looking at here!

Rob
Rob
2 years ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

I looked up the age of these aircraft expecting it to say that the B52H was built in the 80s. They actually date to 1962! Hats off to the manufacturers for building such an enduring aircraft, They will be almost 90 if retired at 2050.

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Rob

Yes Rob, but designed in the 1950s!

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Anyway, I bet the USAF keeps the oldest one flying ops so that they can claim 100years for the B52. Sadly, I will not be around to see it….though some on this forum will be delighted! All I can say to them is….make sure that you vote for your Euro MP in the 2050’s!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Herodotus

We did. UKIP. They won the last Euro elections strangely!

By 2050 the EU will have split apart long before. It’s happening already but you won’t see it on the BBC!

JohnStevens
2 years ago

Throwing insults and crazy comments about Brexit back and forth is not really going to help the current problems with our country. Whether your a remainer or Brexiteer!.. Let’s have sensible discussions about this issue. As a remainer myself l have been called a traitor, which is rather insulting considering I’m a proud Brit!.. Most of my family voted to stay in the EU Including members of my family that have served this country in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces. Worry’s me how split this country has become and how nasty the discussions are sometimes.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  JohnStevens

I quite agree.

I’ve said before here I wish the bloody vote never happened.

Derek
Derek
2 years ago

Well, there was the Referendum, then a General Election. Was anyone asleep when the alternative to Brexit was discussed, debated and Brexit was confirmed as the ‘People’s choice’? Sorry, but I have had to put up with Socialism many times in my life when I have seen their policies catastrophically rape success (anyone here remember the 95% tax rate of ‘the superich’ which led to the so called ‘brain drain’ of excellent talent leaving to live abroad?) and I had no chance of asking for a recount when the grimacing idiot Gordon Brown ‘the economic saviour of Europe’ was made… Read more »

Herodotus
2 years ago
Reply to  Derek

See my post above….the House of Commons is the House of Representatives. The MPs represent their constituencies but are not delegated by them! The MP’s role is to exercise, where possible, his or her conscience. A delegate argues on the basis of a given motion….MPs are not delegates!

Herodotus
2 years ago

Yes, I agree, it was a huge and one that is probably going to cost us dearly….whatever the outcome!

JohnStevens
2 years ago

worries*

excuse the spelling mistake.. nite all !!!

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 years ago

Its beginning to make a little more sense now!

“Boeing contracted to integrate LRSO cruise missile with the B-52H bomber”
https://www.janes.com/article/87248/boeing-contracted-to-integrate-lrso-cruise-missile-with-the-b-52h-bomber

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
2 years ago

Jeesus H Christ, (J.H.S.) i’ve yet to see a Thread on here with so many bloody Moaning L.O.S.E.R.S. !!! Just look at It, Turfing Toys from Prams with Gay abandon.

Daniele mate, You’re wasting your time trying to Educate this bunch of really sore Losers. looks like they only want to Ignore your intellegent Responses.

Bugger me I think I just saw Herodotus on the TV . He was wearing his Balls on his Head !!!!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 years ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

Hi Captn

Sorry, just seen your late post.

Cheers.