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On 27 August, the US air force announced that B-2 Spirit stealth bombers, airmen and support aircraft had been deployed to RAF Fairford, Gloucestershire.

The statement said the ‘task force’ would conduct ‘theatre integration and flying training, including joint and allied training in Europe, to improve bomber interoperability.’

This follows a month-long deployment this spring of six B-52 Stratofortress bombers and more than 450 US personnel to Fairford ‘in support of US Strategic Command’s Bomber Task Force in Europe’.

It was reported as: ‘the largest deployment of a single bomber platform since the beginning of the Iraq War in 2003.’