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UAE Pilots Lead Four Decades of Humanitarian Missions

Colonel Mohammed Al Hashimi and Colonel Muhammed Al Ghanem of the UAE have dedicated nearly four decades of their lives to humanitarian missions.

UAE pilots Colonel Mohammed Al Hashimi and Colonel Muhammed Al Ghanem have dedicated close to four decades of their lives to humanitarian missions. 

Operating from the cockpit of the Dubai Air Wing’s C130 Hercules aircraft, these pilots have been at the forefront of responding to crises worldwide.

A Lifelong Journey of Service:

Both pilots started their journey with the UAE Air Force and played pivotal roles in compassion, hope, and aid missions. 

Colonel Al Hashimi received formal fighter pilot training in Italy and joined the UAE Air Force as a fighter pilot. He later took charge of humanitarian missions and became essential in organizing and piloting these operations.

A Unique Bond with the C130 Hercules:

Colonel Al Hashimi humorously refers to the C130 Hercules as his “second wife.” He has piloted this aircraft for the past 36 years, focusing on humanitarian efforts. 

He had the opportunity to join Emirates Airlines but remained dedicated to his military service.

Colonel Al Ghanem, another experienced pilot of the C130, began his career with the UAE Air Force. 

His journey also led him to become an instrumental figure in humanitarian missions. He expects the C130 to be the last aircraft he pilots in his career.

Thousands of Humanitarian Missions:

Together, these pilots have undertaken thousands of missions, aiding regions affected by natural disasters and crises. 

From Pakistan to Libya, Indonesia to Morocco, and recent missions delivering over 50 metric tons of aid to Gaza have brought hope to those in need.

Dedication Beyond Measure:

Colonel Al Ghanem reveals that they spend most of their time air-delivering humanitarian aid during crises. 

They have even managed their daily activities like meals and prayers while flying. His longest flight was delivering aid from Chicago to Karachi, Pakistan, which took nearly 14 hours.

In their early years, navigation was manual, and missions lasted weeks. The introduction of GPS and INS significantly improved the efficiency of air travel. 

The C130 Hercules was upgraded in the mid-2000s with the latest digital instruments, making navigation and flying easier.

A Love for Their Work and Aircraft:

As they approach their retirement in a few years, both pilots express their love for their work and the C130 Hercules. 

This aircraft has been their faithful companion throughout their lifelong journey of service.

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