Boeing C-17 Globemaster III, Heavy Airlift Wing
The Heavy Airlift Wing (HAW) is an international military airlift organization based at Pápa Air Base, Hungary. It was officially activated on 27 July 2009 as part the Strategic Airlift Capability consortium. The consortium purchased and operates three C-17 Globemaster III aircraft that fly under the national markings of Hungary. To date the Heavy Airlift Wing is commanded by a colonel from the Netherlands. Boeing provides nearly all operational maintenance of the aircraft with a 50-member contractor force, while depot maintenance and crew training is provided by the USAF in the United States.
The wing has provided strategic airlift worldwide on combat, humanitarian, disaster relief, and peacekeeping missions for its 12 member countries. While independent of any command by the European Union, United Nations, or NATO, many of the missions by consortium members have been in support of objectives of those organizations, primarily in strategic airlift support of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. The wing has also flown into Iraq and Lebanon.