An induction ceremony was held by the Nigerian Ministry of Defense for pilots and crew of the A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft. Nigeria agreed to purchase these aircraft as part of a package that included training, munitions, and an upgrade to their facilities at Kainji air base. The deal is worth over $500 million according to a release from U.S. Africa Command, representing the largest Foreign Military Sales program in sub-Saharan Africa. 64 Nigerian air force pilots and maintainers have trained at Moody Air Force Base, Georgia, with the U.S. Air Force’s 81st Fighter Squadron. Nigeria has been searching for air options in their fight against Boko Haram and the West African branch of ISIS for some time. Light craft such as the Super Tucano are not particularly useful for supporting ground troops but are excellent for sharing intelligence.
The Crossroads of Special Operations