[Photo] Tidal Wave of Sand and Dust approaching Camp Bastion in Afghanistan

An interesting image of Camp Bastion eerily still as a sandstorm approaches one of the main strategic bases in Afghanistan.

As already explained, sandstorms move extremely fast and can completely darken large areas in a very short time.

Airfields in Afghanistan can be particularly affected by such phenomena. Camp Bastion, Helmand, the main strategic base in the southwestern part of the country (that includes U.S. Camp Leatherneck and UK’s Camp Bastion), where several aircraft are deployed, is one of them.

The image in this post, taken by Cpl Daniel Wiepen and published on social media by Imagery Team at the UK Ministry of Defence, shows what a tidal wave of sand and dust approaching the base looks like.

If you want to see what a similar scene looks like from inside a C-130J click here.

On Sept. 14, 2012, a squad of 15 Taliban fighters breached the perimeter fence and launched an assault on the airfield, that took out several US Marine Corps Harriers with the loss of two Marines including the Harrier squadron commander. Since then, base security spending has increased and the size of the mixed Task Force which provide Camp Leatherneck and Camp Bastion’s security has nearly tripled.

Interestingly, the above image shows also one of the two white “spy blimps” that along with next-generation cameras, ground-based observational surveillance systems, and a tiny drone, support the Task Force.

If you want to see the image of the sandstorm at higher resolution click here.

Image credit: Crown Copyright

 

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About David Cenciotti 3816 Articles
David Cenciotti is a freelance journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written four books.