Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | Oct. 7, 2021

Joint Forces Execute Exercise PACIFIC WEASEL

By Airman 1st Class Antwain Hanks 35th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan -- Members of Team Misawa executed a simulated defensive counter-air mission in support of a PACIFIC WEASEL (PAC WEASEL) exercise over the western coast of Japan, Oct. 1, 2021.

Exercise PAC WEASEL is a reoccurring exercise allowing joint and bilateral partners to work together to find innovative solutions to any given task. This exercise series enhances the defense capabilities of U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) and Japanese allies, and it supports the U.S. commitment to defending a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

“PAC WEASEL exercises give pilots an opportunity to learn from one another in a joint and bilateral environment, as they are put through various challenging scenarios requiring them to be innovative and work together,” said Capt. Robert Grochalski, 35th Fighter Wing PAC WEASEL mission commander.

This iteration of PAC WEASEL simulated a defensive counter-air mission that tested pilots' abilities to defend a maritime vessel, maintaining its safety and preventing enemy aircraft from reaching a certain distance from the ship.

The exercise led by Grochalski included over 30 various aircraft from the U.S. Navy and Air Force such as F-16 Fighting Falcons, F-15 Strike Eagles, E-3 Sentries, KC-135 Stratotankers and P-8 Poseidons.

“One of the refined tactics learned was how to execute F-16 Fighting Falcons and F-15 Strike Eagles Defensive Counter-Air integration and how to incorporate different airframe tactics into one cohesive defensive force,” said Grochalski. “It is humbling to know that multiple aircrews entrusted me to be able to lead, plan and execute this mission.”

Under Grochalski’s leadership, the units involved were empowered to overcome challenging scenarios sharing innovative techniques and tactics in a joint and bilateral environment to support the U.S. Air Force directive to "Accelerate Change or Lose”.

“Grochalski displayed great composure and solid Airmanship when it came to being mission commander during exercise PAC WEASEL,” said Maj. Luis Monsalve, 35th Fighter Wing exercise PAC WEASEL instructor pilot of record. “Mission commanders are tasked with planning and integrating different mission design series and capabilities in a large scale fight to ensure the achievement of the base commander’s intent.”

The joint effort directly enhanced USFJ’s ability to detect, deter and potentially defend Japan from adversaries, while empowering service members to be innovative and diversify their approach to any given obstacle.

Like Us
Follow Us



Master the Jungle: Counter Insurgency in Nepal
In this file photo, a 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) Officer and his classmates learn route clearance operations by the Counter Insurgency Jungle Warfare instructor in Nepal, Oct. 27, 2021. The course allowed an opportunity to learn and share tactics with the Nepal Army while learning how to survive in a jungle environment.
Jan. 28, 2022 - NEPAL -- The legendary jungles of Nepal are known for their treacherous terrain and the nuanced socioeconomic dynamics that are nestled along its dense boundaries. Nepal Army Counter Insurgency and Jungle Warfare Course...

U.S, Philippine Forces Kick Off Marine Exercise 22
Representatives from the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines, including U.S. military personnel, joined PMC Commandant Maj. Gen. Ariel Caculitan and Commander Combat Service Support Brigade Brig. Gen. Ruben B. Candelario in front of a Small Unit Riverine Craft boat inside the newly constructed boat repair and maintenance facility at Naval Station Rio Hondo in Zamboanga City.   U.S. Military Turns Over Boat Facility in Zamboanga
Jan. 28, 2022 - MANILA, U.S. Embassy in the Philippines -- The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps began training with the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Jan. 27, as part of Marine Exercise (MAREX) 2022 to further the maritime security capabilities...

USS Ronald Reagan, U.S. Naval Hospital Yokosuka Sailors Administer COVID-19 Boosters to American, Japanese Base Employees
220128-N-SI601-1070 YOKOSUKA, Japan (Jan. 28, 2022) Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Andrew Quigley, from Wichita, Kansas, assigned to the U.S. Navy’s forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), administers a COVID-19 vaccination booster to a Japanese base employee on Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, and supports alliances, partnerships and collective maritime interests in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Daniel G. Providakes)
Jan. 28, 2022 - YOKOSUKA, Japan -- Sailors from the U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) worked side-by-side with their counterparts from U.S. Naval Hospital Yokosuka (USNHY) onboard Commander, Fleet...

Readout of Assistant Secretary of Defense Ely Ratner's Call with Mongolia Vice Minister of Defense Bayarmagnai
Jan. 28, 2022 - WASHINGTON -- Assistant Secretary of Defense for Indo-Pacific Security Affairs, Dr. Ely Ratner, held a telephone call with his Mongolian counterpart, Vice Minister of Defense B. Bayarmagnai to commemorate the 35th anniversary...

U.S. and Thailand Inaugurate Elite Border Patrol Police Training Facility
U.S. and Thailand Inaugurate Elite Border Patrol Police Training Facility.
Jan. 28, 2022 - U.S. Embassy & Consulate in Thailand -- U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires Michael Heath and Police Major General Varayuth Sukhawat, Border Patrol Police (BPP) Deputy Commissioner, Royal Thai Police, presided over the unveiling...