NATO Days in Ostrava & Czech Air Force Days went perfectly again

17.09.2023, 18:38

On the second day of the 23rd NATO Days in Ostrava & 14th Czech Air Force Days, Leoš Janáček Ostrava Airport was visited by 85,000 people. Together with Saturday, this is a total of 185,000 visitors who, in the hot late summer weather, watched in the air and on the ground top-class displays of the activities and equipment of armies, armed and security forces and Integrated Rescue System units from a total of nineteen partner countries. NATO Days in Ostrava & Czech Air Force Days, held under the auspices of the President of the Czech Republic, fully confirmed its leading position as a security show of European proportions.

The main theme of this year's event was modernisation, which has proved to be necessary in the light of the Russian aggression in Ukraine. It was therefore very interesting to see older equipment alongside new equipment that is already in use or is planned to be acquired in the future. What resonated most was the unique presentation of three F-35A Lightning II's of the US Air Force and two F-35B Lightning II's of the British Royal Air Force in Central and Eastern Europe.

The partner countries brought to Ostrava displays of the best equipment at the disposal of their armies. Poland, which fulfilled its status of a "Special Partner Nation" in an excellent way, made a really generous presentation. In addition to an extensive presentation of the ground forces and the air force, visitors could see all the units of the Polish special forces, their equipment, as well as the first dynamic display of the GROM unit with the Czech police. There was also a traditional combat landing by members of the AGAT unit, while this unit also presented its equipment - Oshkosh M-ATV light tactical vehicle, HMMWV off-road vehicle or FLYEYE mini drone.

Special Forces units Formoza, GROM, Komandos and NIL also had their presentation in the event area. For the first time outside Poland, the newest addition to the armament of the Polish Land Forces and one of the best main battle tanks of today, the K2 Black Panther, was presented. There was also the Krab self-propelled howitzer, the RAK mortar, the POPRAD anti-aircraft missile system and the AERO 4x4 KAFAR airborne vehicle. It was on Polish military equipment that the extensive shift in modernisation was clearly visible.

Germany is another country that has traditionally treated its participation as above-standard. The Army, Air Force and Navy presented eight aircraft and helicopters, led by two A400M Atlas transport giants. One of them turned up for flight displays, with the Army's NH90 helicopter also making a spectacular appearance. Visitors were able to see the other Atlas up close and inside at a static display, where it was accompanied by a Tornado fighter aircraft with an ammunition display and four helicopters. The H145M special forces multi-purpose helicopter was on display and the NH90 helicopter from the German Navy's arsenal arrived for the first time.

Most of the regiments and brigades of the "home" Army of the Czech Republic traditionally participate in the NATO Days in Ostrava & Czech Air Force Days and provide the visitors with the largest presentation of equipment of all participants. The new acquisition of the Czech Armed Forces in the form of the MADR radar, the Leopard 2A4 main battle tank and unmanned aerial vehicles were on display. The latest additions to the Czech Air Force's armament - the AH-1Z Viper attack helicopter and the multi-purpose UH-1Y Venom - were presented to the public for the first time at the event. The Czech Army and the Czech Police are not only exhibitors of equipment and presenters of the activities of their forces, but most of the supporting organisational activities of the event are also on their shoulders.

The NATO Days in Ostrava & Czech Air Force Days are the largest multi-day event in the Czech Republic thanks to their focus and the number of different components involved in the organisation. All those involved do their best to make sure that the visitors are satisfied to the maximum. Many of the activities are not directly visible, but without them the event could not take place. For example, the Army of the Czech Republic built on-site accommodation for 360 people in 36 tents and provided more than 20 inflatable tents and halls for static displays. Its cooks prepared 900 portions of food per day for the support staff and an impressive 9,000 more meals over the weekend. The comfort of the visitors was also taken care of by the Ostrava Municipal Police, which operated free large-capacity bicycle storages. During the weekend, 5,126 bicycles were in the care of the Ostrava municipal police.

NATO Days in Ostrava & Czech Air Force Days are held under the auspices of President Petr Pavel, the main partners of the event are the Moravian-Silesian Region and the Statutory City of Ostrava. The general partner of the event is Lockheed Martin, the main strategic partner is ORLEN Unipetrol, special partners are Czechoslovak Group and Tatra Trucks and the exclusive partner is Škoda Auto.


Lockheed Martin
Škoda Auto