Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | Feb. 7, 2022

Alaska National Guard Conducts Subject Matter Expert Exchanges with Mongolian Air Force Counterparts

By Spc. Grace Nechanicky Alaska National Guard Public Affairs

JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- The Alaska National Guard participated in the second biennial Airman-to-Airman Talks (A2AT) with the Mongolian Air Force last November to plan for future training and subject matter expert exchanges together.

Hosted by the U.S. Pacific Air Force, A2AT develop interoperability, foster military-to-military relation, and improve bilateral cooperation. The U.S. and partner nation air forces conduct these engagements to plan for collaborative activities and discuss common goals.

This program has direct ties to the National Guard’s State Partnership Program (SPP), which Alaska and Mongolia have been partners through since 2003. Via the SPP, the National Guard participates with other militaries in support of defense security goals. It also leverages whole-of-society relationships and capabilities to facilitate broader interagency and corollary engagements spanning military, government, economic and social spheres.

“[A2AT] gives each of our different components the opportunity to learn best practices from each other,” said Chief Master Sgt. Mike Keegan, chief enlisted manager for the 176th Civil Engineer Squadron and participant of the latest engagement. “For Alaska Guardsmen, it’s an opportunity to participate in missions outside of their country, outside of their state, that ties directly into their [career] skills training.”

Keegan said that working alongside the Mongolian Air Force for training on engineering and logistics skills goes a long way for country-to-country relations.

He continued that the program is also beneficial because the Mongolian Air Force is relatively new and uses the partnership with the Alaska National Guard to grow their own efficiency.

According to Maj. Nathan Pooler, the international partnership specialist for the Alaska National Guard, Mongolian Air Force command was established into law in 2016. Alaska and Mongolia first participated in A2AT in Hawaii March 2019.

U.S. and Mongolian military members participated in four working group topics for the 2021 A2AT: exercises and engagements, logistics, professionalization and education, and medical. During the working groups, the Mongolian Air Force and U.S. Air Force representatives worked side-by-side to develop a plan for future cooperation. The groups discussed common interests and developed a roadmap for activities and exercises, security assistance, and high-level visits.

Keegan, who was part of the logistics group, said that they discussed best practices, offered and solidified subject matter expert exchanges, airfield operations, security forces, and search and rescue. The Mongolian Air Force has a particular interest in rescue capabilities and looks to the Alaska Air National Guard’s (AKNG) search and rescue assets for guidance.

The AKNG and Mongolian Air Force agreed to conduct upcoming subject matter expert exchanges and official visits in Alaska and in Mongolia.

“Our mission there throughout the Airman to Airman Talks was to work and develop together,” said Keegan. “We’re not giving them their objectives. We’re there to offer assistance and help train them.”

Keegan added that A2AT provided an excellent opportunity for Alaska and Mongolia to enrich their relationship, and they are looking forward to further growing their partnership and skills through this program.
CONNECT WITH USINDOPACOM
Facebook

Like Us
Twitter
322,752
Follow Us

ENGAGE & CONNECT MORE WITH PACOM

                                                 

IN THE USINDOPACOM NEWS
USS Charleston Delivers, Displays LCS Versatility
An MH-60S Seahawk helicopter, assigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 21, detachment 8, transports pallets of supplies from the Independence-class littoral combat ship USS Charleston (LCS 18) to the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer USS Sampson (DDG 102). Charleston, part of Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 7, is on a rotational deployment, operating in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations to enhance interoperability with partners and serve as a ready-response force in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific region.
May 26, 2022 - PHILIPPINE SEA -- The Independence-class littoral combat ship USS Charleston (LCS 18) conducted a vertical replenishment-at-sea of the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer USS Sampson (DDG 102) in the Philippine Sea, May 21. During...

Readout of Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III's Call with Japan Minister Of Defense Kishi Nobuo
May 26, 2022 - WASHINGTON -- Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III held a secure call with Japan Minister of Defense Kishi Nobuo to share assessments on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea’s (DPRK) recent ballistic missile...

Commander Fleet Activities Sasebo Soto Dam Memorial Ceremony 2022
Sasebo-based U.S. Navy and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) sailors, Sasebo City Hall, Sasebo City Water Bureau, and Yunoki District representatives and Sasebo Nishi High School students salute and stand as a color guard from Commander, Fleet Activities Sasebo presents colors and JMSDF Petty Officer 3rd Class Mana Taniguchi plays taps during a memorial ceremony at Soto Dam in Sasebo, Japan May 26, 2022. The annual memorial ceremony is held for the 53 American POWs and 14 Japanese laborers who died building Soto Dam during World War II.
May 26, 2022 - SASEBO, Japan -- Sasebo-based U.S. Navy and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force sailors, Sasebo City Hall, Sasebo City Water Bureau, and Yunoki District representatives met atop the scenic Soto Dam for the annual Soto Dam...

U.S. Centers for Disease Control Opens New Country Office in the Philippines
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Philippines Director Dr. Romel Lacson (left) receives the MOU from Dr. Anjo Fabellon of the DOH-Bureau of International Health Cooperation.
May 26, 2022 - MANILA, U.S. Embassy in the Philippines -- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially opened this month a new country office in Manila as part of its commitment to strengthen and expand its existing...

Japan and U.S. Conduct Bilateral Exercise
U.S. Indo-Pacific Command aircraft conducted a bilateral exercise with Japan
Air Self-Defense Forces 25 May, 2022. This exercise was conducted to
demonstrate our nation's rapid reaction capabilities, high levels of force
readiness, close coordination, bilateral interoperability, and credible
deterrent capacity amid the increasing tensions and destabilizing regional
security events brought about by North Korea.  (Courtesy Photo)
May 25, 2022 - CAMP H.M. SMITH, Hawaii – To showcase combined capabilities to deter and counter regional threats, U.S. Indo-Pacific Command aircraft conducted a bilateral exercise with Japan’s Air Self-Defense Force 25 May, 2022 in the Sea...