«Daring is the characteristic of someone being hopeful»
Aristotle’s «Ethica», Chapter C, para. 1
Hellenic Tactical Air Force (HTAF)
- Nord N.2501 NORATLAS
The mission of the unit is to maintain efficiency and readiness to a high standard with the appropriate organization, personnel training, and maintenance of the assets and systems provided for or redeployed in order to assume and successfully carry out Air Operations whenever required.
- 1940 : The unit’s history starts in November 1940 when the World War II starts. A group of British and Greek technicians designed and constructed a taxi way, which they destroyed, a few days before the battle of Crete.
- 1941 : In June 1941, after the island’s occupation, the Germans reconstructed the runway, built new buildings and shelters and established a Squadron of reconnaissance aircraft, with the forced work of resident population From Summer 1941 to March 1943, 200 to 440 sorties per day were conducted from Kasteli airport, for reconnaissance and transportation missions of supplies and ammunition to North Africa.
- 1944 : Since November 1944, after the liberation, the Unit started to operate as Air Detachment of 115 Combat Wing.
- 1951-52 : From March 1951 to November 1952, the newly established Airforce Construction Unit (MAK) carried out reconstruction and extension works in the airport and gave to it the shape it has nowadays.
- 1968 : In November 1968 the unit became an Air Detachment of 126 Combat Group.
- 1974 : In July 1974 it was renamed to 133 Combat Group and came under the Hellenic Tactical Air force Headquarters.
- 1978 : In July 1978 a commander was appointed to the unit and since then it operates as an independent group of the Hellenic Air Force. Apart from the F-84 aircraft, which continued to redeploy after the Cyprus period, the unit hosted the A-7 and F-4 aircraft mainly in evaluation exercises till the end of 1986.
- 1995-97 : Since June 1995 reconstruction works took place to extend the runway and modernize the airport.