The deployment is part of an Air Expeditionary Forces (AEF) rotation, which the 188th is sharing with the Baltimore-based 175th Wing.
The personnel that left today will be deployed about three months and will join a group of about 75 Airmen with the 188th already deployed to Afghanistan to supplement the 175th's portion of the AEF rotation.
About 20 airmen with the 188th deployed to Afghanistan this week as part of an advance team which will prepare for the arrival of the larger group. In total, the 188th will deploy about 375 airmen to Afghanistan during this AEF.
This is the second AEF deployment for the 188th as a unit since receiving A-10 Thunderbolt II "Warthogs" April 14, 2007. The 188th's last AEF deployment transpired in 2010 when the unit deployed about 300 Airmen and 12 A-10Cs to Kandahar, Afghanistan.
The A-10 mission in Afghanistan is to fly close-air support in response to ground troops who may be in contact with the enemy, or to escort convoys in particularly hostile areas. When not supporting ground troops, A-10s patrol designated sectors and provide aerial reconnaissance on locations of interest to ground commanders.