I have a question about the Air Support rules and how the counters are to be used/placed for this.
Per rule 12.2.1:
Air and naval units have no stacking, combat or step values of their own. They may not be given up to satisfy step losses in ground combat, nor may they be used by themselves to gain or reestablish control of any hex on the map. Air units do not exert ZOC.
When reading this (and when looking at the picture in the upper left corner of page 20 of living rules), I am led to believe that the Air Support counters are placed on the map into a stack of that faction's units.
However, rule 12.2.2 states:
Air units of both sides may be used to support any battle, either offensively or defensively, within three hexes of a friendly controlled and fully supplied secondary supply source (i.e., town, city or HQ; 9.4) or USS.
And this (along with the fact that there is an Air Unit holding box on the map) says to me that it is not necessary to place Air Support counters on the map, since they can support any battle near a fully supplied SSS or USS.
So is the idea for the Support counter to be placed on the attacking/defending stack for just the duration of the battle, as a reminder, and then taken off afterwards? If so, does the Air Support get eliminated if the attacker/defender are completely eliminated and there are still step losses remaining?