Idahoans Leave Gem State Participating In Air Defender
Idahoans always answer the call to serve our nation, and members of the Idaho National Guard Citizen - Airmen and Soldiers left to protect the country serving in Europe and Africa. These troops have left their homes and jobs, fulfilling their commitment to the Idaho National Guard.
Over 100 employers will now have to continue without employees who are serving the mission called Air Defender 2023. The Idahoans are part of the Idaho National Guard's 124th Fighter Wing.
Over 150 Idaho Army National Guard Soldiers assigned to the 116th Cavalry Brigade Combat Team mobilized June 4 to Morocco in support of African Lion 2023.
"The 124th Fighter Wing's participation in Air Defender '23 as well as the 116th Cavalry Brigade Combat Team's participation in African Lion are clear demonstrations of the Idaho National Guard's readiness and relevance," said Maj. Gen. Michael Garshak, adjutant general of Idaho and commander of the Idaho National Guard. "Both deployments provide us the opportunity to fulfill our critical role in the United States' defense commitment to our international allies and partners."
Air Defender 2023 is a German-led, multinational, live-fly exercise held June 12-23 and will be NATO's largest exercise since its foundation. The exercise involves more than 20 countries and over 85 aircraft from 44 Air National Guard units and 35 states, which includes six 124th Fighter Wing A-10 Thunderbolt IIs. The exercise provides operational and tactical-level field training, held mainly in Germany with additional locations in Czech Republic, Estonia and Latvia.
In addition to these exercises, other Idaho Air National Guard personnel are currently deployed to the European, Pacific and Middle Eastern theaters supporting real-world operations. More than 600 Idaho Army National Guard Soldiers are currently deployed to Southwest Asia in support of Operation Spartan Shield.