Two B-1B Lancer bombers flew from Ellsworth Air Force Base in South Dakota to the Baltic region Tuesday to take part in a Bomber Task Force mission and train with the Danish air force.
In a Wednesday release, U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa said that the pair of B-1s, from Ellsworth’s 28th Bomb Wing, conducted integration and interoperability training with Danish F-16s over Bornholm Island, which is in the Baltic Sea and is part of Denmark.
The bombers also flew over Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, and helped Estonian joint terminal attack controllers practice close air support on the long-range, long-duration mission. The JTAC training used inert rounds, and took place at Estonia’s Tapa Range.
USAFE said that training with NATO allies, and partner nations in the European theater, serves to improve resiliency and interoperability and contributes to stability in Europe by deterring potential adversaries.
“Integrating bomber missions with our NATO allies and partners build enduring relationships that are capable of confronting a broad range of global challenges,” USAFE commander Gen. Jeff Harrigian said in the release. “When you see the capability and integration firsthand, it is clear we have a force that stands ready to execute the mission.”
The last time the B-1 was in Europe was in November 2018, as part of NATO’s Trident Juncture exercise.
Stephen Losey is the air warfare reporter for Defense News. He previously covered leadership and personnel issues at Air Force Times, and the Pentagon, special operations and air warfare at Military.com. He has traveled to the Middle East to cover U.S. Air Force operations.