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NEWS | July 21, 2023

Enhancing readiness and strengthening partnerships: USAF Mobility Guardian and US Indo-Pacific Command Northern Edge 23-2

By Courtesy article

To enhance military readiness and strengthen partnerships, the United States Air Force and U.S. Indo-Pacific Command are currently conducting two major exercises in the Pacific theater: Mobility Guardian 23 and Northern Edge 23-2. These exercises play a crucial role in maintaining a high state of readiness, fostering interoperability, and ensuring the security and stability of the Indo-Pacific region.

MG23, organized by Air Mobility Command, is a biennial event that brings together forces from Australia, Canada, France, Japan, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States for realistic and challenging training scenarios. The exercise focuses on Mobility Air Force operations, including airlift, air refueling, aeromedical evacuation and combat support. Through real-world scenarios, the training ensures readiness and hones the skills of aircrews, ground personnel and support units to respond effectively to any crisis or contingency.

“The collaboration and connection forged alongside our DoD teammates and our Allies and partners during planning and execution will pay dividends today, tomorrow, and into our unquestionably complex future,” said Lt. Col. Jake Parker, MG23 exercise director.

The exercise provides a unique opportunity for participants to train in a joint and multinational environment that fosters interoperability and strengthens partnerships vital to maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific. It allows the various nations to share best practices, exchange knowledge, and build trust, ultimately enhancing collective defense capabilities. Moreover, MG23 is a launch point for innovation where new technologies and tactics can be tested and evaluated, keeping the coalition’s forces at the forefront of air mobility operations.

“This is a proving ground for the MAF’s new status quo tested through the application of flexible and agile concepts,” said Parker. “The MAF will do its part to ensure the Joint Force and our Allies and partners can overcome transnational security challenges by redefining what MAF readiness looks like.”

Simultaneously, Northern Edge 23-2, led by Pacific Air Forces, focuses on joint training and defensive readiness in the region. For the first time, NE23-2 is taking place throughout the Pacific. Encompassing air, land, sea and cyber domains, it brings together the Joint Force as well as international partners to practice and refine skills as well as demonstrate Agile Combat Employment capabilities while focusing on innovation and emerging technologies.

“This has been an invaluable experience for our lead wing command and control and mission generation force elements, working side-by-side with our Japan Air Self-Defense Force and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force partners, significantly improving our interoperability,” said Col. Isaac Bell, 366th Air Expeditionary Wing deputy commander. “Together we exercised distributed operations from Iwakuni to Tsuiki and Iwo To, in a professional and safe manner. Interoperability training events such as these are vital to the future success of joint, multinational endeavors ensuring a free and open Indo-Pacific.

Northern Edge is key in maintaining a credible posture in the Indo-Pacific region. The U.S. and its Allies demonstrate their commitment to regional security and stability by conducting these joint training exercises. The exercise also serves to evaluate new technologies, tactics, and procedures, ensuring the U.S. remains agile and adaptive in an ever-evolving security environment.

Both Mobility Guardian and Northern Edge 23-2 are critical components of the U.S. military’s efforts to enhance readiness and strengthen partnerships. These exercises provide valuable training opportunities, foster interoperability, and demonstrate the commitment to regional security. As the challenges in the Indo-Pacific region persist, the U.S. remains steadfast in its commitment to maintaining a strong and credible presence in the Indo-Pacific, ensuring security and stability throughout the region.




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