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During a recent raid on a terrorist stronghold in a remote Afghan village, U.S. ground forces came under enemy fire. They called for close air support, and shortly thereafter, an F-16 Fighting Falcon dropped munitions to eliminate the threat.
The Air Force has used the GBU-54 bomb for the first time in combat in Afghanistan, officials at Bagram Airfield announced, Oct. 4, 2010. An F-16 deployed to Bagram from the 510th Fighter Squadron at Aviano AB, Italy, recently dropped a GBU-54 during a combat sortie, they said. The GBU-54, known as the Laser JDAM, is a 500-pound joint direct attack munition with the addition of a laser-guidance kit. That addition allows the munition to strike moving targets precisely, just as it can accurately strike stationary objects via its GPS-aided guidance package. The GBU-54 made its combat debut in August 2008 in Iraq. Here, the weapon is shown resting on an Aviano F-16's wing at Bagram, Oct. 1, 2010.
Air Force photo by SSgt. Christopher Boitz