B-1s Fly Alongside South Korean, Japanese Fighters

A USAF B-1B Lancer assigned to the 37th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron, deployed from Ellsworth AFB, S.D., takes off from Andersen AFB, Guam, to fly sequenced bilateral missions with two Japanese F-15s and two South Korean F-15Ks in the vicinity of the Sea of Japan, East Sea, Oct. 10, 2017. USAF Photo by SrA. Jacob Skovo.

Two B-1B Lancers on Tuesday night flew alongside Japanese and South Korean fighters in a “recent sequenced,” bilateral training mission in a flight to showcase US commitment to the two nations.

The two bombers from the 37th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron deployed from Ellsworth AFB, S.D., to Andersen AFB, Guam, flew to the Sea of Japan, East Sea, in the latest in a series of bomber flights to the area. The Tuesday flight marked the first time B-1s have flown combined training with Japanese and South Korean fighters at night.

“Flying and training at night with our allies in a safe, effective manner is an important capability shared between the US, Japan, and the Republic of Korea, and hones the tactical prowess of each nation’s aviators,” Maj. Patrick Applegate from the 613th Air Operation Center said in a release. “This is a clear demonstration of our ability to conduct seamless operations with all of our allies anytime anywhere.”

The B-1s are deployed to Andersen as part of the Air Force’s continuous bomber presence in the Pacific, and haverepeatedly flowntraining missions in the region as North Korea has continued publicly testing its nuclear program.

The flight came as Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford visited the White House to brief President Trump on military options “to respond to any form of North Korean aggression or, if necessary, to prevent North Korea from threatening the United States and its allies with nuclear weapons,” according to a White House statement.