Marking decade of existence and the Day of 98th Aviation Brigade
Tuesday, 28.11.2017 | News
On Lađevci airport has marked ten years since the formation of the 98th Air Force Brigade. The day of the unit was attended by Defence Minister Aleksandar Vulin and CHOD General Ljubiša Diković.
On Lađevci airport near Kraljevo has marked ten years since the formation of the 98th Aviation Brigade, today.
The day of the unit was attended by Defence Minister Aleksandar Vulin and Chief of General Staff of the Serbian Armed Forces, General Ljubiša Diković, with the members of the collegium, commanders of the former brigade and the units that are today in its composition, members of the Ministry of Defence and the Serbian Armed Forces, representatives of the local government, the Serbian Orthodox Church, the Ministry of the Interior and numerous guests and friends of the unit.
Congratulating the members of the 98th Aviation Brigade on behalf of the President of the Republic of Serbia and Supreme Commander Aleksandar Vučić, Defence Minister Aleksandar Vulin thanked them for their honourable service to their country and their homeland.
- There is no unit in the Serbian Armed Forces that lasts only as long as it bears one name. All Serbian units are woven into one, into the Serbian Armed Forces, and our centuries-old, continuous tradition of freedom fighters is woven into each of our units. That is why I am not congratulating you today on the jubilee of a decade, but I thank you for your centuries-long existence and ability to fight for freedom - Minister of Defence said and added that no one unit in the history of the Serbian Armed Forces, or the Serbian Armed Forces ever did anything which we could or had to be ashamed of.
He pointed out that the Serbian Armed Forces spread the glory of its weapons and its name, and that the essence of the people whom it defended and for which it existed and exists could be summed up in one single word - freedom.
- Freedom above all, freedom as the reason for existence, freedom for which you are here today, freedom for which you earned and received a medal. Freedom in the times behind us, in times of wars and conflicts, in which the great and powerful ones thought that they could make our people and our names what they think is our truth, in times when it was terrible to exist but in which you have shown that there is no task you cannot fulfill, that there is no opponent or an enemy who cannot bow their heads after the battle with you in a silent respect for your courage and your knowledge.
That is precisely why, Minister Vulin said, I congratulate you today on your centuries-long exitence and continuous struggle for freedom.
- If on this piece of our country, which we love and call our homeland, there can ever be lasting peace, it will be so because our Armed Forces is brave enough and strong enough, trained and equipped so that it cannot occur to anyone to try to upset our way of life, to change our existence and jeopardize the future of our children. If on this piece of our country, which we love and call our homeland, there can ever be lasting and long-lasting peace, then it will be so because the Serbian Armed Forces fulfills its tasks both towards the future and memories of the past. If on this piece of our country, which we love and call our homeland, there can ever be lasting peace then it will be so because you are equipped and trained, because you are ready and because it will not occur to anyone to get into conflict with the Serbian army - Defence Minister Aleksandar Vulin said and added that, thanks to our army ready to fight, we have the right to enjoy peace.
- Thanks to you and every day that you spend in the Serbian Armed Forces, in which you are becoming better trained and equipped, we can hope that our children will walk under the free sky, not the sky about which the great and powerful ones decide, and on which they are ruling, the sky that belongs to us becuse we were born under it and because we live and last under it. Not the sky that we had to defend in 1999, during the terrible NATO aggression, but on which our planes are flying; the sky which is free, under which our children are walking, not afraid of the sound of bombs and pictures of ruination and destruction. Thanks to you and your ability to endure and fight against superior, powerful and rich but not more combatant ones, today we can say that we have won our right to decide for ourselves, and the right to be militarily neutral, and the military neutrality will be respected by the great and powerful ones as much as we are both great and powerful and trained and equipped, and above all - as much as we like our country, Minister of Defence said and pointed out that in Serbia there will never be those who would rule being at the same time shy of their own army any more or not being proud of each of the members, in the past, "just as they look forward to your future and the future of your children".
Commander of the 98th Aviation Brigade, Colonel Dejan Vasiljević, recalled the rich historical heritage of the unit and summarized its work results.
- It was 68 years ago that the 198th Aviation Regiment was formed, whose bright traditions we are continuing with dignity, and there are also a number of units that, although they have moved into history, remained permanent inspiration for the generations of Serbian aviation knights, the commander said, adding that the has unit always had a modern air technical assets and high combat capabilities, that it has always been adorned by high professional and combat skills as well as a strong collective spirit and insoluble fighting morale.
Speaking about 1999, Colonel Vasiljević reminded of the heroism of pilots, technicians and the entire crew of the 98th Fighter-Bomber Aviation Regiment, which enabled them to have the greatest number of combat flights, as an aviation unit.
- All this inspires us today, as highly skilled personnel with rich tradition and huge combat experience and morale, to be a steel bastion of the defence of freedom of our homeland. Today, as always, we share the fate and economic moment of our people and the state. The objectively difficult conditions and constraints in which we have worked in recent years have not diminished our contribution to the overall power of the Air Force and Air Defence; we have maintained the capability of combat support to the Army units, decently representing the country and being active participants in every campaign to help the civilian population endangered by natural disasters – the Commander of the 98th Aviation Brigade pointed out and confirmed that on this day the units recorded the greatest serviceability of materiel since the formation of the brigade, for which, as he said, credit should be given to all those who are standing in the ceremonial line.
On the occasion of ten years of existence, President of the Republic of Serbia and Supreme Commander Aleksandar Vučić decorated the unit with the Order of Merit and Safety of the third degree. Defence Minister Aleksandar Vulin handed the medal to the commander of the 98th Aviation Brigade, Colonel Dejan Vasiljević.
The ceremony was concluded by the parade of units of the 98th Aviation Brigade, and the most successful members were awarded and received honours while the tribute was paid to the killed and deceased members of the unit.
At the end of today's ceremony, guests were also able to see the static display of materiel.
The Day of the 98th Aviation Brigade is celebrated in memory of 28th November 1949 when the 98th Fighter-Bomber Aviation Regiment was formed, the unit with the longest tradition of all those that entered the composition of the current brigade and the oldest formed unit in the former AF and AD.