Murphy's Law: AWACS Attacks Afghan Aerial Anarchy


June 22, 2009: Turkey has given NATO permission to station four AWACS aircraft at an airbase in western Turkey. This will make it possible to keep an AWACs in the air over Afghanistan 24/7 (or as close to that as they can). Afghanistan has never had a nationwide air-traffic control system. That was largely because there was never enough aircraft flying around to justify it. As the economy keeps growing, and more U.S. and NATO transports and warplanes are out and about, air traffic control has become a growing problem. All those radar blocking hills and high mountains don't help either. So NATO decided to bring in some of their AWACS (which don't get much work since the end of the Cold War) and play aerial traffic cop over Afghanistan. The AWACs can also keep track of any unscheduled air service being used for the drug gangs or the Taliban, or whoever. NATO will send 300 aircrew and ground support to Turkey as well. The AWACS radar can track over a hundred aircraft, within a 400 kilometers radius.