Press Releases

555th FS kicks off Thracian Star 21, partners with Bulgarian allies

Release Number: 010721

Senior Airman Brooke Parks, 555th Aircraft Maintenance Unit F-16 Fighting Falcon crew chief, marshalls a U.S. Air Force F-16 at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, July 9, 2021. Missions during Thracian Star 21 will include offensive counter air and defensive counter air, protection of high value assets, and close air support in a contested environment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

Senior Airman Brooke Parks, 555th Aircraft Maintenance Unit F-16 Fighting Falcon crew chief, marshalls a U.S. Air Force F-16 at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, July 9, 2021. Missions during Thracian Star 21 will include offensive counter air and defensive counter air, protection of high value assets, and close air support in a contested environment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron (FS) park on the flightline in preparation for Thracian Star 21 at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, July 9, 2021. Eight F-16s assigned to the 555th FS are participating in Thracian Star 21, a multilateral training exercise with the Bulgarian air force, aimed to enhance the ability to rapidly deploy to remote locations and provide credible force to assure stability for the region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron (FS) park on the flightline in preparation for Thracian Star 21 at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, July 9, 2021. Eight F-16s assigned to the 555th FS are participating in Thracian Star 21, a multilateral training exercise with the Bulgarian air force, aimed to enhance the ability to rapidly deploy to remote locations and provide credible force to assure stability for the region. (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 prepare to land at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, for exercise Thracian Star 21, July 9, 2021. Exercise objectives include maximizing interoperability, combat effectiveness and survival awareness while operating in a dynamic high-threat environment. (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 prepare to land at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, for exercise Thracian Star 21, July 9, 2021. Exercise objectives include maximizing interoperability, combat effectiveness and survival awareness while operating in a dynamic high-threat environment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron, taxis off the flightline at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, July 9, 2021. Eight F-16s from the 555th FS are participating in Thracian Star 21, a multilateral training opportunity to test the squadron’s ability to rapidly forward deploy, sustain operations, and work in coordination with our partners and allies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron, taxis off the flightline at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, July 9, 2021. Eight F-16s from the 555th FS are participating in Thracian Star 21, a multilateral training opportunity to test the squadron’s ability to rapidly forward deploy, sustain operations, and work in coordination with our partners and allies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron lands at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, for exercise Thracian Star 21, July 9, 2021. Thracian Star 21 is a multilateral training exercise with the Bulgarian air force, aimed to enhance the ability to rapidly deploy to remote locations and provide a credible force to assure stability for the region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 555th Fighter Squadron lands at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, for exercise Thracian Star 21, July 9, 2021. Thracian Star 21 is a multilateral training exercise with the Bulgarian air force, aimed to enhance the ability to rapidly deploy to remote locations and provide a credible force to assure stability for the region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Moeder)


U.S. Airmen and F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 31st Fighter Wing, Aviano Air Base, Italy, are participating in exercise Thracian Star 21 at Graf Ignatievo Air Base, Bulgaria, from July 9-23, 2021.

The 555th Fighter Squadron is participating in the multilateral exercise alongside Bulgarian air force partners and Airmen from the 435th Combat Training Squadron, and the 4th Combat Training Squadron, Detachment 1, Ramstein AB, Germany.

Training will include offensive and defensive counter air missions, protection of high value assets, and close air support in a contested environment.

This training aims to maximize interoperability, combat effectiveness and survival awareness while operating in a dynamic high-threat environment. It also enhances our ability to rapidly deploy to remote locations and provide a credible force to assure stability for the region.

Participation in multinational exercises such as Thracian Star 21 enhances our professional relationships and improves overall coordination with allies and partner militaries during times of crisis.

Please contact the 31st Fighter Wing Public Affairs office at 31FW.PA2@us.af.mil for more information.