Military feature: Powerful gunship will be based at Cannon

USAF courtesy photo The AC-130H gunship, flown by 16th Special Operations Squadron, will begin its move to Cannon in June.

CNJ staff

It’s considered one of the deadliest conventional weapons in the world and it will be based at Cannon Air Force Base this year.

A spokesman for the 1st Special Operations Wing said the AC-130H gunship, flown by 16th Special Operations Squadron, will begin its move to Cannon in June.

Also known as Spectre, the aircraft is armed with cannons capable of leveling buildings and destroying vehicles, according to an Air Force fact sheet on the aircraft.

In a December Fox News article, the AC-130 gunship was listed among the five deadliest conventional weapons in the world.

“It’s extremely useful in providing close air support for personnel on the ground,” said 2nd Lt. Mark Lazane of the 1st Special Operations Wing Public Affairs Department.

At present the squadron is serving in missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The 16th Special Operations Squadron will complete its move to Cannon in August from the 1st Special Operations Wing at Hurlburt Air Field in Florida, according Lazane.

He said approximately 300 personnel will move to Cannon.

According to a 2007 Air Force Special Operations Command factsheet there are eight active AC-130H aircraft in the Air Force.

The other variation of the gunship, the AC-130U “Spooky”, is flown by the 4th Special Operations Squadron at Hurlburt Field, Fla.