Press Releases

Falcon Strike 21 kicks off, 555th FS partners with multinational allies

Release Number: 010621

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jordan Mooring, 555th Aircraft Maintenance Unit F-16 Fighting Falcon crew chief, prepares to perform recovery operations on a U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron at Amendola Air Base, Italy, June 4, 2021. Six U.S. Air Force F-16C aircraft will be participating  in Falcon Strike 21 (FS21), an exercise involving service members from the U.S., Israel, Italy and the United Kingdom to integrate fourth and fifth generation fighter capabilities in a large force employment event. The exercise is a multilateral military training exercise conducting air operations in a contested multinational force environment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jordan Mooring, 555th Aircraft Maintenance Unit F-16 Fighting Falcon crew chief, prepares to perform recovery operations on a U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron at Amendola Air Base, Italy, June 4, 2021. Six U.S. Air Force F-16C aircraft will be participating in Falcon Strike 21 (FS21), an exercise involving service members from the U.S., Israel, Italy and the United Kingdom to integrate fourth and fifth generation fighter capabilities in a large force employment event. The exercise is a multilateral military training exercise conducting air operations in a contested multinational force environment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Josue Ramirez, 555th Aircraft Maintenance Unit F-16 Fighting Falcon crew chief, services the hydraulics system on a U.S. Air Force F-16 assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron at Amendola Air Base, Italy, June 4, 2021. FS21 is an exercise designed to provide advanced and realistic aircrew training through fourth and fifth generation integration. Approximately 600 service members from the U.S., Israel, Italy and the United Kingdom will be participating in FS21. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Josue Ramirez, 555th Aircraft Maintenance Unit F-16 Fighting Falcon crew chief, services the hydraulics system on a U.S. Air Force F-16 assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron at Amendola Air Base, Italy, June 4, 2021. FS21 is an exercise designed to provide advanced and realistic aircrew training through fourth and fifth generation integration. Approximately 600 service members from the U.S., Israel, Italy and the United Kingdom will be participating in FS21. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

A U.S. Air Force F-16C Fighting Falcon assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron participating in Falcon Strike 21 (FS21) lands at Amendola Air Base, Italy, June 4, 2021. FS21 is an exercise designed to provide advanced and realistic aircrew training through fourth and fifth generation integration. Exercises like FS21 provide a venue to train with other nations, build readiness, practice interoperability, and enhance enduring relationships. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

A U.S. Air Force F-16C Fighting Falcon assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron participating in Falcon Strike 21 (FS21) lands at Amendola Air Base, Italy, June 4, 2021. FS21 is an exercise designed to provide advanced and realistic aircrew training through fourth and fifth generation integration. Exercises like FS21 provide a venue to train with other nations, build readiness, practice interoperability, and enhance enduring relationships. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

Four U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron participating in Falcon Strike 21 (FS21) fly in formation over Amendola Air Base, Italy, June 4, 2021. Six U.S. Air Force F-16C aircraft are participating in Falcon Strike 21 (FS21), an exercise involving service members from the U.S., Israel, Italy and the United Kingdom to integrate fourth and fifth generation fighter capabilities in a large force employment event. Exercises like FS21 provide a venue to train with other nations, build readiness, practice interoperability, and enhance enduring relationships. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

Four U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron participating in Falcon Strike 21 (FS21) fly in formation over Amendola Air Base, Italy, June 4, 2021. Six U.S. Air Force F-16C aircraft are participating in Falcon Strike 21 (FS21), an exercise involving service members from the U.S., Israel, Italy and the United Kingdom to integrate fourth and fifth generation fighter capabilities in a large force employment event. Exercises like FS21 provide a venue to train with other nations, build readiness, practice interoperability, and enhance enduring relationships. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

For the first time ever, two F-35s landed at Aviano in support of AK21 May 20, 2021.

An Italian air force F-35A Lightning II assigned to the 32nd Wing, Amendola Air Base, Italy, taxis while a U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon takes off during Astral Knight 2021 (AK21) at Aviano Air Base, Italy, May 21, 2021. For the first time ever, two F-35s landed at Aviano in support of AK21 May 20, 2021. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

For the first time ever, two F-35s landed at Aviano in support of AK21 May 20, 2021.

An Italian air force F-35A Lightning II pilot assigned to the 32nd Wing, Amendola Air Base, Italy, participating in Astral Knight 2021 taxis at Aviano Air Base, Italy, May 21, 2021. Amendola Air Base is a military airfield of the ITAF, home of the 32nd Wing, and now the main base for Italy’s F-35 program. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

For the first time ever, two F-35s landed at Aviano in support of AK21 May 20, 2021.

An Italian air force F-35A Lightning II assigned to the 32nd Wing, Amendola Air Base, Italy, prepares to land at Aviano Air Base, Italy, during Astral Knight 2021 Exercise (AK21), May 21, 2021. For the first time, two F-35s landed at Aviano in support of AK21, May 20, 2021. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

For the first time ever, two F-35s landed at Aviano in support of AK21 May 20, 2021.

Airmen from the 31st Fighter Wing Airmen train with an Italian air force (ITAF) member on F-35 Lightning II procedures during Astral Knight 2021 at Aviano Air Base, Italy, May 21, 2021. The members trained on topics such as petroleum, oil and lubricant processes and fire and egress procedures. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)


U.S. Airmen and F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron are participating in exercise Falcon Strike 21 at Amendola Air Base, Italy, from June 7-15, 2021.

Falcon Strike 21 is a joint multinational exercise with participants from the United States, Israel, Italy, and the United Kingdom. The exercise optimizes the integration between fourth-generation and fifth-generation aircraft, increases the level of cooperation in the F-35 logistics and expeditionary fields, and strengthens interoperability of allied and partner air forces during joint operations.

This year’s exercise is hosted by Italy and will provide multinational forces the opportunity to test and improve shared technical and tactical knowledge, while conducting complex air operations in a multinational, joint force environment. Amendola Air Base is the main operating base for Falcon Strike 21 and all training scenarios will take place in Italian air space.

Aircraft planned to participate in the exercise include: U.S. Air Force F-35A Lightning II and F-16 aircraft; U.S. Marine Corps F-35B Lightning II aircraft; Royal Air Force F-35B Lightning II aircraft; Italian Air Force F-35A and F-35B Lightning II, Gulfstream G550, F-2000 Eurofighter Typhoon, Panavia Tornado, AMX International aircraft, Alenia Aermacci T-346 aircraft, and MQ-1 Predator aircraft; and Israeli Air Force F-35I Adir and Gulfstream G550 aircraft.

In addition to enhancing combat readiness and strengthening bonds between allies and partners, Falcon Strike 21 provides participants the opportunity to develop capabilities in planning and conducting complex air operations, leading to an advanced level of training.

Participation in multinational exercises like Falcon Strike 21 enhances our professional relationships and improves overall coordination with allies and partner militaries during times of crisis.

U.S. European Command and our NATO partners and allies continue to strengthen our deterrence efforts and adapt by improving readiness and responsiveness.