Value of air support proven anew in Zamboanga City campaign

October 1, 2013 10:25 am 

MANILA, Oct. 1 — In modern warfare, having adequate air support is critical in winning the battle.

This was proven anew in the 20-day campaign in Zamboanga City against Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) fighters whose will to fight was eroded by unremitting pressure from government forces, including helicopter attack units from the Philippine Air Force and the constant aerial attacks that prevented the rebels from breaking out from their cornered positions.

During the 20-campaign, MG-520 "Defender" attack and the venerable UH-1 "Huey" combat utility helicopters were constantly present in the battlefield, providing cover fire for advancing government troopers.

Aside from their close air support role, PAF helicopters and other aerial assets like the Lockheed C-130 "Hercules" ensure that supplies will also get through the front aside from ensuring that wounded soldiers will be flown out and given adequate medical care in rear areas.

PAF spokesperson Col. Miguel Ernesto Okol said while the Air Force played a key role in containing the MNLF threat with its air strikes and logistic supports, credit is much due to the bravery and gallantry of the troops on the ground.

"(This win can be dedicated to the) proficiency and dedication of our soldiers (on the ground). (Aside from) good coordination and well thought of joint and combined planning and most of important of all, public support," he added. (PNA)

FPV/PFN

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