BUFFs Go Down Under

B-52H bombers currently stationed on Guam participated late last month in a training exercise called “Aces North” Australia with fighter aircraft of the Royal Australian Air Force. During a four-day period, B-52s flew 12-hour sorties from Andersen Air Force Base down to the Australian continent to meet up with RAAF aircraft flown by Aussie pilots practicing air-combat techniques as part of a five-month fighter combat instructor course. “This was a great experience,” said Maj. Tom Morgan, assistant director of operations for the 23rd Expeditionary Bomb Squadron, the B-52 unit from Minot AFB, N.D., that arrived at Andersen in early October as part of a four-month rotational deployment. Morgan said the exercise allowed the B-52 airmen to execute long-duration missions, promote interoperability with a coalition partner, and fly as part of large-force packages of upwards of 30 aircraft. For the Aussies, it was the opportunity to train with a distinct bomber capability. The 23rd EBS is set to finish its stint on Guam in January. Last month, these B-52s took part in an exercise with elements of the Japan Self Defense Forces. (Andersen report by A1C Ryan Whitney)