Amendola: The First Two JSF Aircraft Assigned to the 32nd Wing
(Source: Italian Air Force; dated Dec 12, 2016, web-posted Dec 19, 2016)
(Issued in Italian only; unofficial translation by Defense-Aerospace.com)
Italy was the first non-US country to field the F-35A fighter, but this milestone was not announced for several days, while attention was focused on the delivery to Israel. Uniquely, both Italian aircraft were assembled in Italy. (AMI photo)
The first 5th-generation aircraft supplied to the Air Force have landed at Amendola air base [near Foggia in the heel of Italy].

On Monday, December 12, the first two Italian F-35 aircraft landed at the 32nd Stormo (Wing) at Amendola (Foggia province), which was recently reconstituted to accommodate the Joint Strike Fighter.

Amendola is the first base in Europe to acquire the aircraft produced and assembled at the Italian FACO (Final Assembly and Check Out) facility at Cameri (Novara province), and reaching this event marks an important milestone not only for the Air Force, but for the entire Italian Defense sector as well as industry in terms of capabilities and technology growth.

The Wing will host the new weapon system at the new, cutting-edge infrastructure designed and manufactured thanks to specific innovative engineering and technological solutions, in order to respect environmental sustainability and energy efficiency.

The two Joint Strike Fighters will work alongside other highly operational systems already in service there – the unmanned "Predator" aircraft of 28th Squadron – which continue to be employed in the most important theaters, both nationally and internationally, thereby providing a valuable operational and security contribution.

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