NATO Air Force Patch NATO AWACS Mazar E Sharif Patch Afghanistan
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NATO Air Force Patch NATO AWACS Mazar E Sharif Patch Afghanistan

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  • Item #: 1P 10NA 1AWC 01SQN 1OP 000DSQ 02
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NATO Air Force Patch NATO AWACS Squadron Mazar E Sharif Patch Surveillance E-3A Grey Aircraft 2012 Mazar e Sharif AB Afghanistan Afghan made embroidered on twill cut edge black velcro back 95mm by 92mm three and three quarter inches by three and five eighth inches. 

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In the late 1970s with increasing tensions with the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact NATO decided to establish the NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Force with E-3A Awacs and establish its Main Operating Base MOB at Geilenkirchen West Germany.  The first E-3A Component  personnel started arriving and construction of the operational and support facilities commenced in January 1980. Flying operations began in February 1982 after delivery of the first E­-3A aircraft with Geilenkirchen MOB formally handed over to NATO by Germany on 31 March 1982. The E-3A Component officially activated on 28 June 1982 and reached Full Operational Capability by the end of 1988 with 18 Awacs one of which was lost in a crash.

The E-3A Component is NATOs first­ operational flying unit with multinational manning. The Component commander is held alternately by Germany and the USA. The Components organizational structure comprises a Headquarters staff and five major functional elements Operations Wing Logistics Wing Base Support Wing Training Wing and Information Technology Wing. Each Wing is commanded by a different participating
NATO member nation.

The Component has three operational E-3A flying Squadrons 1 2 and 3 with 17 aircraft and a Trainer Cargo Aircraft TCA Training Squadron with 3 aircraft one of which has since been retired. A total of thirty multinational operational aircrews from 14 of NATOs 28 nations: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, and the United States. The Aircrew
Training Squadron operates on an equally multinational basis under the direction of Training Wing. The E-3As have had two major modernization programs since the early 1990s including a Mid-­Term Modernization Programme completed in December 2008.

While the UK and France are not part of the NATO E-3A Component having their own E-3 Squadrons RAF and French personnel have participated as aircrew and in training and ground operations particularly prior to delivery of their own aircraft in 1990.

The E-3As are deployed to the Components Forward Operating Bases in Greece Italy and Turkey and the Forward Operating Location in Norway each of which is manned by NATO personnel from the respective host nation. In addition the force carries out operational deployments to other countries.

NATO E-3 Sentry aircraft were among the first to deploy during Operation Desert Shield, immediately establishing an around-the-clock radar screen to defend against Iraqi forces. During Operation Desert Storm E-3s flew 379 missions and logged 5,052 hours of on-station time.
The data collection capability of the E-3 radar and computer subsystems allowed an entire air war to be recorded for the first time in history. In addition to providing senior leadership with time-critical information on the actions of enemy forces E-3 controllers assisted in 38 of the 41 air-to-air kills recorded during the conflict. NATO AWACS have taken a very important role in all NATO operations since. NATO and RAF E-3s participated in the international military operation in Libya in 2012.




This patch dates from the 2000s




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