RSAF Patch da Sqn Royal Saudi Air Force 4 Squadron Air Despatch
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RSAF Patch da Sqn Royal Saudi Air Force 4 Squadron Air Despatch

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  • Item #: 1P 41SA 1SAF 01SQN 2OP 0004SQ 01
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RSAF Patch Royal Saudi Air Force 4 Squadron Air Despatch Loadmaster Parachute Rigger C 130E Hercules Jeddah Air Base 1965 Embroidered on wool cut edge 102mm by 83mm four inches by three and one quarter inches.

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With a large landmass and distance between population areas airlift was a major requirement in national defence. When the Royal Saudi Air Force RSAF was reestablished in 1950 US and UK trained pilots personnel and aircraft were transferred from Saudi Arabian Airlines SAA which had taken over the Royal Fleet in the late 1940s. The transport fleet consisted of a number of C 47 Dakota and two C 54 Skymaster transport aircraft transferred SAA transport aircraft together with six new C 47 Dakotas received from the US in 1952 following the Mutual Defence Assistance Agreement signed in 1951 which also allowed the US to continue military operations from Dhahran Air Field which the US had constructed during WWII. The US Military Training Mission USMTM to Saudi Arabia was established in 1953 and six C 123 Provider transport aircraft were added to the RSAF fleet the same year.

 

With assistance from USMTM to modernise RSAF activated 4 Squadron at Jeddah Air Base in 1957 to operate the six C 123 Provider aircraft the remaining C 47 Dakota transport aircraft and two C 118 Loadmaster aircraft. 4 Squadron was tasked with personnel and cargo tactical airlift between RSAF and international bases support for Army training and operations including parachute delivery and VIP transport services. 

 

RSAF was an early adopter of the C 130 Hercules transport aircraft and 4 Squadron received the first RSAF C 130E Hercules transport aircraft in 1965 building up its Hercules fleet retiring its C 123 Provider C 118 Loadmaster and eight Dakota aircraft in 1967. The Squadron undertook airlift missions to bases around the country and air transport in support of Saudi Forces combat operations on the border with Yemen during the civil war until hostilities ceased in 1970. 4 Squadron began adding C 130H aircraft to its fleet in 1974 and supported RSAF operations during the Iran Iraq War. The Squadron conducted regular airlift flights throughout Europe South East Asia and to the US.

 

Following the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait on 2 August 1990 the Squadron undertook tactical airlift operations in support of Saudi and Coalition Forces in support of Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm January March 1991.

 

4 Squadron emblem was changed in 1992 when RSAF decided to standardise unit logos and to remove the depictions of living creatures on RSAF emblems as not in accordance with Islamic scripture. Whilst Operation Desert Storm successfully ejected the Iraqi occupation of Kuwait and degraded Iraqs military capability 4 Squadron transport support operations continued through the 1990s with Operation Southern Watch and the No Fly Zone.

 

Jeddah AB was redesignated Prince Abdullah Air Base in 1999 when all RSAF air bases were named after members of the Saudi Royal family and RSAF introduced its Wing system to control and support base Squadrons with 8 Wing established at PAAB Jeddah with 4 Squadron assigned to the Wing.

 

The Squadron continued support during Operation Iraqi Freedom the invasion of Iraq from 20 March to 1 May 2003. 4 Squadron has deployed assets to Europe and the US in support of exercises including Green Flag and has provided airlift support for the RSAF and coalition campaigns over Yemen against Houthi rebels since 2009.

 

The Squadrons last C 130E was retired in 2010 when six were sold to Turkey and the remaining stripped for spare parts. 4 Squadron has provided airlift support for the RSAF and coalition campaigns against ISIS in Iraq and Syria since 2014 including deployments to Inkirlik Turkey in 2016.

 

The Squadron is due to upgrade to C 130J aircraft. 

 

This patch dates from 1965

 

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