[an error occurred while processing this directive]

printer version

MacDill air wing receives orders to deploy

By Times staff writer
© St. Petersburg Times
Related video

56k | High-Speed

published January 17, 2003

TAMPA -- The 6th Air Mobility Wing at MacDill Air Force Base received deployment orders last week, a wing spokesman said Thursday.

Sgt. Chris Miller said he did not have details of the deployment order, such as when or where the MacDill crews would be deployed or how many wing aircraft are involved. Normally, he said, that kind of information is classified.

The 6th Air Mobility Wing is a 3,000-person force capable of rapidly projecting air refueling power anywhere in the world.

MacDill is home to 12 KC-135 Stratotankers used to refuel aircraft in flight. Each tanker, Miller said, employs three crew members, a pilot, copilot, and the boom operator who controls the refueling pump.

In recent weeks the Pentagon has stepped up deployment orders for the buildup in the Persian Gulf, should President Bush decide to invade Iraq.

Gen. Tommy Franks, the Tampa-based commander who would direct any operation to oust Saddam Hussein, has begun dispatching his staff to the Central Command's heavily protected forward headquarters in the Persian Gulf nation of Qatar, where they would coordinate an invasion.

In recent days three large deployment orders signed by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld -- two for a total of 62,000 troops and one on Dec. 24 for about 25,000 -- have set in motion critical reinforcements of troops, armor, warships and combat aircraft.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Back to Tampa Bay area news
Back to Top

© 2006 • All Rights Reserved • Tampa Bay Times
490 First Avenue South • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • 727-893-8111
Contact the Times | Privacy Policy
Standard of Accuracy | Terms, Conditions & Copyright
Special Links
Mary Jo Melone
Howard Troxler

From the Times
local news desks
  • Howard Troxler: Philadelphia, N.J.: Iggles, cheese steaks and cheese steak eaters
  • Is student play unsuitable for students?
  • Bucs: Football fans appeal to higher power
  • Temple scraps art, sculptor sues
  • MacDill air wing receives orders to deploy
  • Obituary: Tighe, former USF provost, dies at 74
  • Poynter dean will be next president
  • Q&A: Aquaculture manager knows his fish
  • Stardancer probe focuses on fraud