MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan --The U.S. Air Force 354th Air Expeditionary Wing (AEW) and Marine Aircraft Group 12 performed a capabilities demonstration during a pre-planned readiness exercise at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Iwakuni, Japan, July 7, 2022.
The demonstration included five U.S Marine Corps F/A-18 Hornets, eight F-35B Lightning IIs, a KC-130J Super Hercules aircraft, 10 U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptors and 10 F-35A Lightning II aircraft. The large formation exercise tested the units’ ability to rapidly generate joint airpower in support of the defense of Japan, ensuring the stability and security of a free and open Indo-Pacific region.
“It was a great opportunity for us to demonstrate our joint airpower capability alongside our MAG-12 partners with their various aircraft,” said U.S. Air Force Col. David Berkland, 354th AEW commander. “This demonstration, and the joint training missions we flew afterwards, allowed us to improve our already formidable integration tactics with the U.S. Marine Corps.”
The 354th AEW has been conducting agile combat employment training at MCAS Iwakuni for the past month. MCAS Iwakuni is uniquely qualified to enable the Joint Force, be it through providing use of the station's collocated harbor and airfield, serving as a staging point for non-organic aircraft operations, or any number of other operational activities.
Following the capabilities demonstration, the pilots conducted local training sorties in the approved training airspace around Iwakuni.