TLP 2006-3; Greek Phantoms and many Tornados
The Tactical Leadership Programme was founded in the late 19seventies. Its purpose was to join allied forces and train together in joint operations, but also to generate leaders for challenging multinational air defence and air strike missions. The TLP is a standalone organization based on a Memorandum of Understanding between the air forces of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. During the years other nations have been invited as guests to participate.
The first TLP ever was held at Fürstenfeldbruck Air Base, Germany, in January 1978, but this first edition was strictly academic. The TLP moved to Jever AB, Germany, in September 1979 and the academic course was extended with a flying phase. When the TLP left Jever in 1988, 71 courses were held there and over 1900 aircrews were trained. Florennes AB in Belgium was appointed as the new homebase for the TLP, and hosted its first TLP in March 1989. The TLP stayed at Florennes until July 2009, when the exercise moved to Albacete, Spain, where weather conditions are far better and the aircrews have a large airspace structure to their usage.
TLP 2006-2 was held at Karup AB in Denmark. So after a quiet March and April the TLP was back in Belgium. The first participants arrived on Friday 5 May and the last participants departed on Friday 2 June.
This edition brought a large number of Panavia Tornados. The RAF send no less than 12 different Tornados to the Ardennes and the Italian Air Force participated with 2 Tornados from Gioia del Colle AB in the South of Italy.
The French Air Force participated with 2 Mirage F.1CT’s and the French Navy with 3 Super Etendards from Landivisiau AB. The USAF send 2 F-16´s from Spangdahlem AB and 3 F-15E´s from Lakenheath AB. The Spanish Air Force participated with 4 Mirage F.1M´s from Los Llanos AB and 2 F/A-18A’s from Gando AB. But the icing on the cake were the 4 Greek F-4E Phantoms from Andravida air base.
French Air Force with Mirage F.1CT from EC.02.030
French Navy with Super Etendard from 11 Flotille
Hellenic Air Force with F-4E from 339 Mira
Italian Air Force with Tornado IDS from 36 Stormo
Royal Air Force with Tornado GR.4 from 2, 14 and 31 Sqn. and Tornado F.3 from 111 Sqn.
Spanish Air Force with F/A-18A from Ala 46 and Mirage F.1M from Ala 14
USAF with F-16C from 22nd FS and F-15E from 492nd FS