MV-22B Osprey: A Strategic Leap Forward
NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIV WASHINGTON DC INST FOR NATIONAL STRATEGIC STUDIES
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In early October 2007, the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp steamed through the Gulf of Aqaba, turned into the wind, and made final preparations for flight operations. The Wasps mission was to launch a squadron of Marine Corps assault support aircraft, so they could make their way into Iraq to replace a helicopter squadron that was nearing the end of its 7-month combat deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Although shipboard flight operations occur daily throughout the world, there was nothing routine about this particular launch. As the wheels of the MV-22B Osprey aircraft ascended from the Wasps deck, aviation history was made.