The Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) has disbanded 311 Squadron, leaving it with only four F-16 squadrons. Volkel air base commander Col. Peter Tankink today handed the squadron flag to RNLAF chief Lt.Gen. Sander Schnitger, followed by a fly-by by eight F-16s.
Schitger warned against further cuts like those which led to the squadron's disbandment. He said the Dutch military "is completely squeezed after 20 years of non-stop cuts," adding, "Further defense cuts are a major risk to our security and prosperity."
The RNLAF now has four F-16 squadrons left: 322 and 323 at Leeuwarden air base and 312 and 313 remaining at Volkel.
311 Squadron still managed to celebrate its 60th anniversary. It was the first flying squadron to be stood up at Volkel on 1 May 1951, first flying Thunderjets and then Thunderstreaks. It converted to Starfighters in 1965 and to F-16s in 1982.