B-52s Train with Norwegian Aircraft in High North
(Source: US Air Forces in Europe; issued June 3, 2020)
RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany --- Four B-52H Stratofortresses from the 5th Bomb Wing, Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, conducted a long-range, long duration strategic Bomber Task Force mission throughout Europe and the Arctic region, June 3, 2020.
The flight involved missions over the Arctic Ocean and Laptev Sea. Additionally, the aircraft conducted training with Norwegian F-16s and F-35s.
The U.S. Department of Defense is working with our Arctic nations and multinational and interagency public and private partners to maintain a secure and stable region where nations work cooperatively to address challenges.
“The Arctic is a strategic region with growing geopolitical and global importance, and these Bomber Task Force missions demonstrate our commitment to our partners and allies and our capability to deter, assure, and defend together in an increasingly complex environment.” said Gen. Jeff Harrigian, U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa commander. “The integration of our bombers across Europe and the Arctic is key to enhancing regional security.”
Joint and combined training, exercises, and operations help mitigate and reduce security risks associated with increased human activity in the Arctic.
KC-135 Stratotankers from the 100th Air Refueling Wing, RAF Mildenhall, England, and the 168th Air Refueling Wing, Eielson Air force Base, Alaska, enabled the B-52s to complete the round trip from Minot Air Force Base.
Joint Exercise with US Bombers and Norwegian Fighters
(Source: Norwegian Defence Force; issued June 03, 2020)
For the third time this year, Norwegian fighters trained together with US strategic bombers.
Today, Norwegian F-35s and F-16s trained together with US B-52 Stratofortress in international airspace just outside Finnmark, in Northern Norway.
The US Airforce has for some time now, had regular exercises in Europe with some of their capacities. Earlier this year, the Royal Norwegian Air Force conducted several joint exercises both over Iceland and Norway with the F-35s and F-16s.
Norway is an arctic nation with big sea- and land areas. Being present in northern parts of Norway, and having joint exercises with our allies is strategically important.
“US is our closest ally. This deployment demonstrates US commitment to the defence of Europe. US forces need to conduct exercises in Europe with its allies to be able to defend Allied territories, including our national area of responsibility. Through this kind of integrated training between close allies, both our forces increase our ability to operate together seamlessly, says Chief of Defence, Haakon Bruun-Hansen.
B-52 Stratofortress is one of the US's strategic bomber-aircraft fleet, as well as B1- Lancer and B-2 Spirit.
Just last week, Norway got three new F-35, and has now received almost half of the planned fleet. In total Norway now has 25 of 52 F-35s. The plan is that Norway will be fully operational with the F-35s in 2025.