An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | May 12, 2023

Cope Thunder 23-1 comes to a close

By Courtesy Story, Pacific Air Forces Public Affairs

Approximately 160 USAF Airmen flew, supported and maintained more than 12 aircraft from the 35th Fighter Wing, Misawa Air Base, Japan during their operations at Clark Air Base, Philippines.

During these flying operations, Allied forces had the opportunity to train side by side, increasing familiarity with each others’ tactics and enhancing interoperability and lethality, all in the support of a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

“We’re integrating with the PAF every day, both on the ground and in the air, and it has been an outstanding opportunity for both our forces to learn from each other,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. David Dubel, 14th Fighter Squadron commander. “The PAF pilots are very much like us, they think like us, they’re fighter pilots to the core and they’ve been awesome to fly with.”

The 14th Fighter Squadron flew F-16 Fighting Falcons while their PAF counterparts flew FA-50PHs and AS-211s for a total of 96 sorties and 127 flying hours during CT 23-1.

Alongside flying operations, SMEEs were conducted by the 736th Security Forces Squadron Airmen and their PAF counterparts at Basa Air Base, Philippines. They trained weapons handling, close quarters battle operations, combatives, unmounted vehicle operations and simulated attack scenarios.

“I’m grateful for the U.S. Air Force members who have shared their expertise, especially with security and defense operations,” said 2nd Lt. Nick Dinglasa, PAF security forces team lead. “I look forward to applying these methods with the rest of our team and strengthening the defense of this region with our Allies.”

This exercise between allied forces hit closer to home for one individual as U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joseph Ramos, 736th SFS noncommissioned officer in charge of command support staff, returned to his hometown for CT 23-1.

Ramos was born not too far from Basa Air Base and this was his first time returning to the Philippines since enlisting into the U.S. Air Force in 2016.

“The opportunity to come back to the Philippines and work alongside the forces of my home country is such an honor,” said Ramos. “Working with the PAF and being able to build that bond between our forces has humbled me and I look forward to more training with our forces in the future.”

U.S. Air Force Airmen and Philippine Air Force personnel conducted bilateral fighter training operations at Clark Air Base, Philippines and subject matter expert exchanges at Basa Air Base, Philippines in support of exercise Cope Thunder 23-1, May 1-12, 2023.

A closing ceremony for CT 23-1 was held at Clark Air Base, Philippines May 12, 2023. At the ceremony, closing remarks were shared, appreciation was given by both the USAF and PAF personnel involved, gifts and patches were traded and Allies celebrated the enhancement of interoperability between these like-minded forces, proving the commitment of the United States and the Philippines to maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific region.


Like Us
Follow Us



Investments in Military Capabilities Are Paying Off, Milley Says
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark A. Milley provides testimony on the fiscal 2024 defense budget at a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense hearing in Washington, May 11, 2023.
May 12, 2023 - The U.S. military is the most lethal and capable armed force in the world because previous administrations and Congresses made the investments needed, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said...

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan Meets with Chinese Communist Party Politburo Member and Director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission Wang Yi
May 11, 2023 - WASHINGTON, DC - National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan met from May 10-11 with Chinese Communist Party Politburo Member and Director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission Wang Yi in Vienna...

Royal Thai Navy and U.S. Navy commence CARAT Thailand 2023
May 11, 2023 - SATTAHIP, Thailand - The Royal Thai Navy (RTN) and U.S. Navy began exercise Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) Thailand 2023 in Sattahip, May 8, 2023...

MARFORPAC Hosts Royal Thai Marine Corps For Talks
U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific (MARFORPAC) and Royal Thai Marine Corps staff members pose for a group photo during the first Marine-to-Marine Future Engagement Planning event at MARFORPAC, Camp H. M. Smith, Hawaii, May 8, 2023. This event is designed to establish a mechanism to better plan for operations and activities conducted bilaterally between MARFORPAC and the RTMC.  (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Blake Gonter)
May 10, 2023 - U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific hosted a delegation from the Royal Thai Marine Corps here May 8-9...

US and Philippine Army Generals visit Corregidor Island, Philippines, to Commemorate Key WWII Battles
Gen. Charles Flynn, Commanding General of U.S. Army Pacific, and Philippine Army Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Romeo S. Brawner, Jr. lead a U.S.-Philippine Army delegation to visit the ruins of Fort Mills on Corregidor Island during Exercise Balikatan 2023. (U.S. Army photos by CPT Benjamin Myers)
May 10, 2023 - Nearly 81 years after American and Filipino forces surrendered Corregidor Island – the final holdout against invading Imperial Japanese forces. U.S. Army Pacific Commanding General Gen. Charles A. Flynn and Philippine Army...