by Senior Airman Kristof J. Rixmann
86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
OTOPENI AIR BASE, Romania — U.S. military personnel from the 86th Airlift Wing, 435th Air Ground Operations Wing and U.S. Army 5th Quartermaster began an approximately two-week-long exercise with Romanian forces in Otopeni, Romania, Aug. 19.
Enhancing U.S. military readiness and strengthening the relationship with Romania, a NATO partner, are the focal points throughout exercise Carpathian Fall 2019.
“Throughout the exercise, we’ll be accomplishing a few different things,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Ian Hall, Carpathian Fall project officer. “We’ll be increasing our interoperability between our Air Force and the Romanian Air Force. We’ll be discussing and exchanging ideas about tactics; we’ll see how they operate, demonstrate how we operate and then see what we can learn from each other.”
In addition, Hall said Carpathian Fall serves as an excellent opportunity to attain certifications and training that isn’t otherwise possible in Germany.
“We’ll be engaging in a lot of low-level (altitude) and night-time training that we can’t do in Germany due to quiet hours restrictions,” said Hall. “As a result, we’ll be getting many certifications for approximately 20 U.S. personnel.”
Carpathian Fall also provides numerous training opportunities for the Romanian Air Force.
“The Romanian Air Force will partake in larger flying formations than they typically do,” said Hall.
“In addition, Romanian paratroopers will be dropping from our aircraft so that gives them the chance to accomplish training they require.”
In terms of readiness, Hall said Carpathian Fall is a necessary component in maintaining and strengthening the relationship with Romania.
“Overall, to effectively carry out our mission at USAFE (United States Air Forces in Europe), we need to depend upon our partner nations because we’re guests in this area,” said Hall. “We need to be able to count on Romania just as much as they need to count on us. Maintaining these kinds of relationships is important because if the time ever comes where we need to rely on each other, then we’ll already be prepared to work and communicate together in an efficient way.”