Forces at the Shindand Air Base in western Herat on Tuesday celebrated the 90th anniversary of the establishment of the country’s Air Force.
The airfield commander, Gen. Asadullah Hashimi, hoped the Afghan Air Force (AAF) will soon return to its past in terms of equipment and training.
“Today all the countries in the world admit that the Afghan Air Force was top in the region during 1960s both in terms of quality and quantity,” Hashimi said. “As we have past experiences, I am sure we will regain our past strength in near future.”
Highlighting the need for a serious combat against insurgents, the AAF pilots said they were ready to conduct night operations – which were previously conducted by the foreign troops before their combat mission ended in 2014.
“I am proud of being a pilot in my country,” said Lieut. Gen. Akhtar Mohammad. “My message to enemies is that the Afghan Air Force is capable of defending their soil.”
Meanwhile, a number of retired pilots expressed that they were ready to help the sector. They urged the government to use their experience in training the newcomers.
“They [retired pilots] are those who have great experience,” retired lieutenant Abdul Rahman said. “They are great assets and the government must use their experience.”
Shindand Air Base is the country’s only Air Force training center that restarted its operations in 2010.
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