Friday, February 28, 2014

U.S. Kisses Manas Goodbye

The United States is closing the Manas transit center in Kyrgyzstan. The transit center operated for years and was instrumental in the movement of personnel and equipment in and out of the Afghan theater. Those personnel who passed through Manas on their way to Afghanistan probably arrived on the "rotator" - a civilian contract airliner filled with military personnel (and contractors). You exited the aircraft and were trucked to the Manas compound where you recovered your baggage and then found a cot in one of the huge tents erected for transients. Your next stop was air operations to find a flight to Afghanistan. Sometimes it was a quick 24 hour turn around. For some it could be days (if you didn't have a ULN!). The Krygyzstan has exacted a hefty price for the use of the airbase and their ever increasing monetary demands were finally a bit too much. Romania is where most of the equipment and personnel will pass through on the way to Europe or the states during the retrograde from Afghanistan. It is time to kiss Manas goodbye! (Photo by Senior Airman George Goslin, USAF 376th Air Expeditionary Wing, 30 Dec 13).

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