Prince Harry has been deployed to Afghanistan to resume his role as an Apache helicopter pilot. The handsome Royal arrived at Camp Bastion in the Helmand province on Friday. The austere surroundings at the British Army base where the 663 Squadron, 3 Regiment Army Air Corps stand in sharp contrast to the lavish amenities the famous young pilot recently enjoyed in Las Vegas.
Four years ago, the Royal served quite briefly as a helicopter pilot in Afghanistan. After news of his deployment to the Middle East leaked, safety fears prompted Prince Harry’s removal from the forward operating base, according to CNN. The current military assignment is slated to last four months.
Earlier this year, the man third in line to the British throne qualified to fly combat missions in Apache helicopters. Some of the flight training took place in the Nevada and Arizona deserts. Harry earned a flight award as the best co-pilot gunner during the instructional sessions.
Captain Jock Gordon had this about his new arrival during a Press Association interview:
“Working together with his colleagues in the squadron, he will be in a difficult and demanding job, and I ask he be left to get on with his duties and allowed to focus on delivering support to the coalition troops on the ground.”
Camp Bastion is one of the world’s busiest airfields and is home to approximately 28,000 people. The famous aviator will be working as part of the Joint Aviation Group, a support division of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force and Afghan military forces in the region. Prince Harry is qualified as a mission commander. His primary duties will likely include providing surveillance, deterrence, and, when necessary, close combat escort duties.