The US Air Force delivered one more C-130H aircraft to the Argentina Air Force on June 6 through the Georgia Air National Guard, as part of a foreign military sales lease program.
Under the lease agreement, air crews with the 165th AW and Argentina flew to Argentina together for the delivery. Guard Airmen with the 165th AW will stay in Argentina for ten days to train up to five additional crews at the I Brigada at El Palomar Air Base.
Argentina requested the C-130H from the United States and will lease it for 11 months, with the option to buy the airframe at a later point in time. The Argentina Air Force has a fleet of five C-130H aircraft and has operated the C-130 since 1968.
The Hercules primarily performs the tactical portion of the airlift missions and can operate from rough dirt strips and is the prime transport for airdropping troops and equipment into inaccessible areas.
The Argentine Air Force said it plans to use the aircraft for disaster relief efforts and to support missions to Antarctica.
According to the US Air Force, the aircraft will become the youngest C-130 in the Argentine fleet by 21 years and could expand the life expectancy of the fleet for years to come.
“Our partnership with Argentina continues to grow as we provide modernized capabilities and train together, strengthening Argentina and contributing to our strategic goals,” said Maj. Gen. Konata Crumbly, commander of the Georgia Air National Guard. “The Air National Guard is able to take part in this mission because of the National Guard’s State Partnership Program and our experience with the C-130H.”
“This will provide a pathway for our international partner to divest from aircraft and advance their initiatives and objectives,” said Air Force Col. Scott Humphrey, chief of international affairs, National Guard Bureau. “The National Guard, allies, and partners working together to upgrade equipment, boost readiness, and enhance mobility.”
“Through Total Force Integration through the State Partnership Program, we are able to help partners improve and assist in developing common operating principles which enhance the ability of aligned military forces to operate effectively together,” he added.
“This is the latest example of how our military cooperation has been an integral part of our strong friendship across 200 years of relations,” said US Ambassador Marc R. Stanley. “Thanks to the Air National Guards in Georgia and Illinois for bringing a C-130H aircraft to Argentina and to both of our militaries for coming together to share best practices on aircraft operations.”