366th Operations Group

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366th Operations Group
366thoperationsgroup.jpg
Active 1943–1946; 1952–1957; 1992–present
Country  United States
Branch  United States Air Force
391st Fighter Squadron McDonnell Douglas F-15E-49-MC Strike Eagles 90–235; 90–243; 90–253; 90–236; 90–250 in formation.
389th Fighter Squadron Lockheed F-16C Block 52Q Fighting Falcon 93-0551

The 366th Operations Group (366 OG) is the flying component of the 366th Fighter Wing, assigned to the United States Air Force Air Combat Command. The group is stationed at Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho.

Overview[edit]

The 366th Operations Group is one of the most diverse operations groups in all of Air Combat Command. The group is responsible for planning, operations, intelligence, weapons training, and airfield services for seven squadrons assigned to the 366th Fighter Wing. It develops flying airspace and range schedules for more than 20,000 flying hours and 13,000 sorties annually. It also maintains combat readiness for short-notice worldwide Air Expeditionary Force and contingency operations.

Assigned Units[edit]

The 366th Operations Group (Tail Code: MO) comprises seven squadrons: the 390th Electronic Combat Squadron, 389th, 391st and 428th Fighter Squadrons, 366th Operations Support Squadron, 726th Air Control Squadron and 266th Range Squadron.

  • 266th Range Squadron
The 266 RANS is responsible for providing quality electronic simulations of ground-based air defense threats on Mountain Home Range Complex consisting of: Saylor Creek AF Range, Juniper Butte AF Range and Grasmere Electronic Combat Site. 266 RANS equipment and tactics closely parallel the integrated air defense systems of potential adversaries
  • 366th Operations Support Squadron
The 366 OSS "Pegasus" is responsible for all airfield activities and associated support of the 366th Fighter Wing's numerous fighter missions supporting F-15SG, F-15E and Air Control Squadron operations. The 366 OSS is a diverse squadron, consisting of 185 personnel in six unique flights: airfield operations, weapons and tactics, current operations, range, intelligence and weather.
  • 389th Fighter Squadron
The 389 FS "Thunderbolts" plan and conduct F-15E operations and contingency plans. The squadron maintains combat readiness of 71 personnel and 18 F-15E aircraft for short-notice, worldwide AEF operations. The squadron is mission ready to perform close air support, interdiction, strategic attack, suppression of enemy air defense and defensive counterair missions, employing the full array of U.S. Air Force capabilities including precision-guided munitions, inertially-aided munitions, night vision goggles, fighter data link and Low Altitude Navigation and Targeting Infrared for Night (LANTIRN).
  • 390th Electronic Combat Squadron
The 390 ECS is assigned to the 366th Operations Group and is stationed at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, WA. The 388 ECS is tasked to man, train, and equip USAF aircrew to employ expeditionary U.S. Navy EA-6B & EA-18G aircraft in support of Unified Commanders' plans with electronic attack/information ops capability designed to degrade or destroy enemy air defense systems by suppression of enemy radars and communications with complex, directional jamming and High-Speed Anti-Radiation Missiles
  • 391st Fighter Squadron
The 391 FS "Bold Tigers" plan and conduct F-15E operations and contingency plans. The squadron maintains combat readiness of 85 personnel and 24 F-15E aircraft for short-notice, worldwide AEF operations. The squadron is mission ready to perform close air support, interdiction, strategic attack, suppression of enemy air defense and defensive counterair missions, employing the full array of U.S. Air Force capabilities including precision-guided munitions, inertially-aided munitions, night vision goggles, fighter data link and Low Altitude Navigation and Targeting Infrared for Night (LANTIRN).
  • 428th Fighter Squadron
The 428 FS "Buccaneers"

History[edit]

For additional history and lineage, see 366th Fighter Wing

World War II[edit]

Media related to United States Army Air Forces 366th Fighter Group at Wikimedia Commons

"Jenny Rebel", Republic P-47D-15-RE Thunderbolt 42-76347 of 389th Fighter Squadron shown taking off on runway 26 from RAF Thruxton airfield, 1944

Group trained in P-47s in preparation for overseas duty. Entered combat from England in March 1944 with fighter sweeps over the Bayeaux-St. Aubin area of France. Participated in attacks on targets in France, Belgium, and Germany in preparation for the invasion of the Continent. Flew fighter sweeps over Normandy on 6 June 1944; targets included motor vehicle convoys, buildings, and gun emplacements. Moved to the Continent soon after D-Day. Received a DUC for three missions flown in support of ground forces on 11 July 1944: on a mission to destroy pillboxes near St. Lo, Normandy, France, discovered and destroyed portion of an enemy tank column unknown to Allied infantry; after rearming, the group returned to attack the tank column and prevented the enemy from accomplishing their mission. During the third mission, despite heavy rainfall, successfully attacked another Panzer battalion from minimum altitude. Group also supported Allied ground forces during the breakthrough at St. Lo in July 1944. In August 1944 attacked tanks, trucks, and troop concentrations as enemy retreated; provided armed reconnaissance for advancing Allied armored columns. During September 1944, attacked flak positions near Eindhoven during airborne landing in the Netherlands; bombed enemy communications and transportation lines in western Germany. Flew armed reconnaissance missions over Battle of the Bulge during December 1944 – January 1945; group flew 600 sorties from 17–27 December 1944 that resulted in the destruction of 43 enemy aircraft, 37 tanks, 328 trucks, 18 armored vehicles, four gun positions, and 15 half-tracks. Provided cover for VII Corps in January 1945 and during action destroyed over 1,000 enemy vehicles. Flew missions against enemy transportation systems including motor vehicles, bridges, trains, railway bridges, and marshalling yards during February and March 1945. Moved to Germany in April 1945. On group's last mission of the war, attacked harbors at Kiel and Flensbury on 3 May 1945. Served in occupational status in Germany from May 1945 until group inactivated.

Cold War[edit]

Emblem of the 366th Fighter-Bomber Group

The group was reactivated on 1 January 1953 at Alexandria Air Force Base, Louisiana. It replaced the Federalized Iowa Air National Guard 132d Fighter Bomber Group which was being returned to state control after a twenty-one month period of activation as a result of the Korean War. The group was composed of the 389th, 390th, and 319st Fighter Squadrons. Initially using the former ANG F-51D Mustangs, the 366th received F-86F Sabres which were returned from Korea in the summer of 1953, then received new swept-wing F-84F Thunderstreaks in early 1954. On 18 March 1954, the KB-29 equipped 420th Air Refueling Squadron was attached to the Wing to provide air refueling for the Thunderstreaks. The B-29s were later replaced with KB-50 aerial tankers.

The group's squadrons became first TAC units to perform six-month TDY rotations with NATO at Aviano AB, Italy, with rotations continuing until group inactivated in September 1957 when parent wing adopted Tri-Deputate organization and assigned operational squadrons directly to the wing.

Modern era[edit]

McDonnell Douglas F-15E-49-MC Strike Eagles 90-0233; 90-0246

Upon activation in 1992, assumed control of 366th Wing's operational units. Deployed assets to Southwest Asia throughout the 1990s support to Operation SOUTHERN WATCH; elements participated in Operations PROVIDE COMFORT I and PROVIDE COMFORT II in Turkey. Group's squadrons directly participated in Operations ENDURING FREEDOM and NOBLE EAGLE following the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks.

After the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the consolidation of the Air Force's KC-135 and B-1 force led to the reallocation of the unit's bombers and tankers to McConnell AFB, Kansas, and Ellsworth AFB, S.D. The group was also home to F-16CJ Fighter Falcon aircraft from 1992 to March 2007. The F-16CJs left the base in another effort to consolidate from multiple airframes to one at Air Force installations across the country.

Lineage[edit]

  • Established as 366th Fighter Group on 24 May 1943
Activated on 1 June 1943
Inactivated on 20 August 1946, aircraft, personnel and equipment being redesignated as 27th Fighter Group.
  • Redesignated 366th Fighter-Bomber Group on 15 November 1952
Activated on 1 January 1953
Inactivated on 25 September 1957
Redesignated 366th Tactical Fighter Group on 31 July 1985 (Remained inactive)
  • Redesignated 366th Operations Group, and activated, on 1 March 1992

Assignments[edit]

Components[edit]

Stations[edit]

Aircraft assigned[edit]

References[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

  • Maurer, Maurer (1983). Air Force Combat Units Of World War II. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-89201-092-4.
  • Ravenstein, Charles A. (1984). Air Force Combat Wings Lineage and Honors Histories 1947–1977. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-912799-12-9.
  • USAFHRA 366th Operations Group Factsheet
  • 366th Operations Group Factsheet
  • Johnson, David C. (1988), U.S. Army Air Forces Continental Airfields (ETO), D-Day to V-E Day; Research Division, USAF Historical Research Center, Maxwell AFB, Alabama.

External links[edit]