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 | Nov. 21, 2014

Max Thunder: Yokota Trains Combat Mobility

By Staff Sgt. Cody H. Ramirez 374th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

The 36th Airlift Squadron participated in Exercise Max Thunder during the past week, flying alongside Republic of Korea counterparts to integrate their airlift capabilities in a simulated combat environment.

Max Thunder is a biannual, large-scale employment exercise aimed at increasing U.S. and ROK interoperability and ultimately enhances U.S. and ROK commitments to maintain peace in the region.

"We are the only C-130 airlift piece in the Pacific, so it is critical that we have this experience on the peninsula," said Maj. Andrew Baker, 36 AS weapons and tactics flight commander. "When the call goes out from the commanders in South Korea, [anything from humanitarian relief to combat operations], we are right next door and we are going to support them with whatever they need."

These exercises highlight the longstanding military partnership, commitment and enduring friendship between the two nations, help to ensure peace and security on the Korean Peninsula, and reaffirm the U.S. commitment to stability in the Northeast Asia region.

"We are actually participating with the Korean C-130s in our formations and flying with a lot of Korean fighters ... We are committed to them, we are committed to their people," Baker said.

ROK and U.S. forces participating in the exercise have the ability to accept follow-on forces. Interoperability with dissimilar aircraft, like the Yokota C-130s flying with fighters, enables aircrew members to be battle-ready for many potential situations.

In addition to familiarizing the aircrew with working alongside different types of aircraft, the exercise also allows aircrew to experience flying in the Korean peninsula.

"One of the things that we are limited to here at Yokota is we have to fly high for our low-level training - about 1,000 feet above ground level," Baker said. "When we get to Korea, we can get as low as 500 feet above ground level.

"Into the Korean peninsula, we are going down low and getting familiar with the terrain, and that's going to really help us if we ever need to exercise that option," Baker added.

The 36 AS was able to showcase their combat airlift capabilities in the simulated contingency operation, taking advantage of the training opportunity.

Max Thunder is part of a continuous exercise schedule, strengthening the U.S.-ROK Alliance and helping both nations fulfill their obligations to the Mutual Defense Treaty. The exercise is a regular training event held twice a year, and is not related to any real-world events.

Like Us
Follow Us



Australia Welcomes United Sates Marines Back to Darwin
US Marines have begun arriving in the Northern Territory for this year’s Marine Rotational Force – Darwin. They will conduct training activities to deepen interoperability and better position our forces to respond to contingencies in the region.
March 22, 2023 - Defence Australia -- United States Marines have arrived in the Northern Territory as part of the 12th rotation of Marine Rotational Force – Darwin (MRF-D).Over the next seven months, up to 2,500 Marines will conduct combined...

Logistics in Peacetime is Hard Enough; Now Add Water, Distance, and Being Shot At: USFJ DCOM
Brig. Gen. James Wellons, deputy commander of U.S. Forces Japan, participated in a panel at the Defense Security Equipment International conference in Tokyo, Japan, Friday, March 17. The panel, comprised of military officers from each service of Japan’s Self Defense Forces as well as senior officers from the British Army and Royal Australian Air Force, discussed the important role of logistics planning to national security strategy.
March 22, 2023 - TOKYO, Japan -- Brigadier General James B. Wellons, deputy commander, U.S. Forces Japan, participated on a panel at the Defense Security Equipment International conference in Tokyo, Japan, Mar. 17, 2023.The panel, comprised...

CTF 74 Visits U.S. Submarine in Australia
Royal Australian Navy Rear Adm. Matt Buckley, Head of Capability, Nuclear Powered Submarine Task Force and Rear Adm. Rick Seif, commander, Submarine Group 7 board the Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Asheville (SSN 758) for a distinguished visitor cruise with Australian political leaders and diplomatic guests, March 15. Asheville conducted multiple tours for distinguished visitors during a routine visit to HMAS Stirling, Western Australia to enhance interoperability and communication, and strengthen relationships with the Royal Australian Navy.
March 21, 2023 - HMAS STIRLING, Australia -- Rear Adm. Rick Seif, commander, Submarine Group 7/Task Force (CTF) 74, visited Perth, Australia, to meet with the Sailors of the Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Asheville (SSN 758)...

U.S. Indo-Pacific Commander Presents Gen. Yamazaki with Legion of Merit
TOKYO (March 19, 2023) Gen. Kōji Yamazaki, Chief of Staff, Joint Staff of the Japan Self-Defense Forces, joins Adm. John C. Aquilino, Commander U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, at a ceremony presenting Yamazaki with the Legion of Merit in Tokyo. Yamazaki received the award for exceptionally meritorious service, where his professionalism, initiative and dedication to duty resulted in significant advancements in the United States-Japan mutual security partnership, expansions to the Self-Defense Forces contributions regionally and globally, updates to force posture and continuous bilateral information exchange. (U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Shannon M. Smith)
March 21, 2023 - Adm. John C. Aquilino, Commander U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, presented Gen. Kōji Yamazaki, Chief of Staff, Joint Staff of the Japan Self-Defense Forces, with the Legion of Merit, Degree of Commander, in Toyko on March 19,...

U.S. Coast Guard, Federated States of Micronesia National Police Conduct at-sea Engagements to Combat Illegal Fishing, Strengthen Skills
The USCGC Oliver Henry (WPC 1140) makes a port call in Yap during a Federated States of Micronesia patrol on March 13, 2023. The Oliver Henry is the 40th 154-foot Sentinel-class fast response cutter named for Oliver T. Henry, Jr., an enlisted African American Coast Guard member first to break the color barrier of a then-segregated Service and homeports in Guam.
March 21, 2023 - SANTA RITA, Guam -- The U.S. Coast Guard (USCGC) and Federated States of Micronesia National Police conducted a successful at-sea engagement to combat illegal fishing in Yap State on March 16, 2023.The crews of USCGC Oliver...