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Eighth AF commander visits BTF Airmen in European theater

Major General James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, poses for a photo with a pilot call sign Heat, assigned to the 509th Bomb Wing, at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew in a B-2 Spirit during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to Royal Air Force Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, poses for a photo with a pilot call sign Heat, assigned to the 509th Bomb Wing, at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew in a B-2 Spirit during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to RAF Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Major General James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, taxis in a B-2 Spirit on the flight line of Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew the stealth bomber during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to Royal Air Force Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, taxis in a B-2 Spirit on the flight line of Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew the stealth bomber during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to RAF Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Major General James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, descends in a B-2 Spirit onto the flight line of Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew the stealth bomber during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to Royal Air Force Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, descends in a B-2 Spirit onto the flight line of Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew the stealth bomber during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to RAF Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

An Airman assigned to the 509th Bomb Wing marshals in Major General James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, as he taxis in a B-2 Spirit on the flight line of Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew the stealth bomber during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to Royal Air Force Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

An Airman assigned to the 509th Bomb Wing marshals in Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, as he taxis in a B-2 Spirit on the flight line of Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew the stealth bomber during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to RAF Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

An Airman assigned to the 509th Bomb Wing marshals in Major General James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, as he taxis in a B-2 Spirit on the flight line of Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew the stealth bomber during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to Royal Air Force Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

An Airman assigned to the 509th Bomb Wing marshals in Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, as he taxis in a B-2 Spirit on the flight line of Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England, on August 28, 2019. Dawkins flew the stealth bomber during his visit to engage with members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, who had deployed to RAF Fairford as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Major General James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, poses for a photo with Technical Sergeant Erik Riener, an aerospace ground equipment member assigned to the 509th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, on August 27, 2019, at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England. Riener and other members of Team Whiteman, along with along strategic partners have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, poses for a photo with Tech. Sgt. Erik Riener, an aerospace ground equipment member assigned to the 509th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, on August 27, 2019, at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England. Riener and other members of Team Whiteman, along with along strategic partners have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Major General James Dawkins Jr., the Eighth Air Force commander, speaks to members of the 509th Maintenance Group from Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, on August 27, 2019, at Royal Air Force Fairford, England. Dawkins visited members of Team Whiteman, who along with along strategic partners, have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., the Eighth Air Force commander, speaks to members of the 509th Maintenance Group from Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, on August 27, 2019, at RAF Fairford, England. Dawkins visited members of Team Whiteman, who along with along strategic partners, have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Major General James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, poses for a photo with members of the 509th Bomb Wing, on August 27, 2019, at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England. Members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, along with along strategic partners have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, poses for a photo with members of the 509th Bomb Wing, on August 27, 2019, at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England. Members of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, along with along strategic partners have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Technical Sergeant Erik Reiner, an aerospace ground equipment member assigned to the 509th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, talks to Major General James Dawkins Jr., the Eighth Air Force commander, on August 27, 2019, at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England. Dawkins coined Reiner for his contributions to Team Whiteman's mission. Members of Team Whiteman, along with along strategic partners have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Tech. Sgt. Erik Reiner, an aerospace ground equipment member assigned to the 509th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, talks to Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., the Eighth Air Force commander, on August 27, 2019, at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, England. Dawkins coined Reiner for his contributions to Team Whiteman's mission. Members of Team Whiteman, along with along strategic partners have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

Major General James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, greets Michael Beaumeister, Air Force engineering and technical services representative assigned to Whiteman Air Force Base Missouri, on August 27, 2019, at Royal Air Force Fairford, England. Members of Team Whiteman, along with along strategic partners have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)
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Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., Eighth Air Force commander, greets Michael Beaumeister, AF engineering and technical services representative assigned to Whiteman Air Force Base Missouri, on August 27, 2019, at RAF Fairford, England. Members of Team Whiteman, along with along strategic partners have deployed as part of a Bomber Task Force to the European Command area of operations to conduct theater integration and flying training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kayla White)

ROYAL AIR FORCE FAIRFORD, England --

Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., the Eighth Air Force commander, flew across the Atlantic to visit his Airmen at Royal Air Base Fairford, England, from August 27-28, 2019. He also flew a B-2 training sortie during his visit.

“The opportunity to get out and visit units gives me that rare insight into how they’re actually operating,” said Dawkins. I learned a tremendous amount during this visit.”

Airmen from across Air Force Global Strike Command, including Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, Dyess AFB, Texas, and Barksdale AFB, Louisiana, along with Airmen from Spangdahlem Air Base and Ramstein Air Base, Germany, converged as a Bomber Task Force to conduct theater integration and flying training in support of European Command objectives.


He said this deployment brings together the best leaders from the wing-level on down.

“I was really excited to see the multiple Eighth Air Force teams joining to execute our mission,” said Dawkins. “They really came together to make this deployment happen.”

Dawkins said having this type of training helps the U.S. maintain that level of unpredictability it needs to keep its adversaries guessing, and provides the president options by testing out ability to operate from various locations around the world.

“When we participate in Bomber Task Force missions, it sends a huge message to our adversaries that we can strike from anywhere,” said Dawkins.

Dawkins also explained how BTF missions bolster our relationships with allies.

“There’s strength in numbers,” he said. “The U.S. and our allies, have critical capabilities to bring to the fold.”

BTF deployments allow the U.S. to demonstrate to its strategic partners its commitment to global security and stability, said Dawkins.