“Sudore ac Pulvere”
(Latin for: "Covered with sweat and dust")
The 336th Squadron was implemented in September 1961, first involved in transferring material for the Dutch Navy to New Guinea.
Equipped only with a few Dakota aircraft it was deactivated only one year later in 1962.
19 teen years later, on 1st August 1981, the squadron was reimplemented to take over its duty on HATO Air Base, the new home of two Fokker 27 on the (Dutch) Island of Curaçao. Tasks of the reactivated squadron were (among others) the execution of Search And Rescue - missions (SAR), surveillance against smugglers as well as to detect oil pollution on the Atlantic ocean.
The two planes carried soldiers from one isle to another (the so called ABC-Islands: Aruba, Bonaire und Curaçao) and shared also on different oversea exercises. Nevertheless they were again deactivated in 1999 for their task was being taken over by Orion-aircraft of the Dutch Navy. Consequently Major J.L. van Zanten, the last Squadron commander, gave his command back to the Commander of the Dutch Air Force on 6th of July 2000.
Specialized in tactical Air Transport
The 3rd implementation of the squadron took place on the 23rd of October 2007: With its current homebase now in Eindhoven the new squadron took over two Lockheed C-130 H-30 “Hercules” from the 334thsquadron. Further two aircraft Hercules C-130 H followed in the year 2010.
The 336th squadron prepares and conducts tactical Air Transport (AT) all over the world. The four planes offer a wide range capacity of more than 8.000 km and can carry up to 20 tons of freight. Its STOL-capabilities (Short Take Off &Landing) allow the Hercules to land almost everywhere, facing difficult conditions: So called “dirt strips” – remote areas with few infrastructure. Equipped with the Missile Warning System (MWS) it can protect itself by using flares against heat-detecting rockets.
While at the end of 2008 one C-130 operated near to the Sahara Desert at Chad, another Hercules deployed since January 2009 to the Dutch detachment as of “Mirage” inside the United Arab Emirates. From this outpost it carried over protection devices to the Air Base Kandahar in Afghanistan, make it therewith possible to deploy further troops within a save environment in theatre.
Text: Norbert Thomas
Pictures by RNLAF and SIRPA