Two B-1B Lancers, forward deployed to Guam as part of U.S. Pacific Command’s Continuous Bomber Presence mission, flew sequenced, bilateral missions Tuesday night over the Sea of Japan with two Japan Air Self-Defense Force F-15s and two Republic of Korea air force F-15Ks.
It’s the first time PACOM Lancers have conducted nighttime combined training with Japanese and South Korean fighters at night, according to a command news release.
The Lancers, from Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota, are assigned to the 37th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam.
In a news release, PACOM said the mission demonstrated the allies’ increased combined capabilities.
“Flying and training at night with our allies in a safe, effective manner is an important capability shared between the U.S., Japan and the Republic of Korea and hones the tactical prowess of each nations’ aviators,” said Maj. Patrick Applegate, 613th Air Operation Center, in the news release. “This is a clear demonstration of our ability to conduct seamless operations with all of our allies anytime, anywhere.”
Meanwhile, another pair of Lancers, from the 7th Bomb Wing at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, arrived at Royal Air Force Fairford in southern England Tuesday. They will take part in various exercises and training with allied nations and other U.S. Air Force units as part of USAFE’s forward operating mission for bombers.
The arrival of the B-1B’s came two days after the Air Force deployed an unspecified number of F-22 Raptors, airmen and equipment to Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England, for a flying training deployment in which they will train with NATO allies and Europe-based U.S. aircraft.
The Raptors, from the 1st Fighter Wing at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, arrived at Lakenheath Sunday and will forward deploy to other NATO bases to train with allied aircraft and enhance regional security.
The deployment is funded by the European Deterrence Initiative.