Personnel of Fairchild AFB in Spokane, Wash., prepare paperwork in anticipation of the arrival of 4,000 troops and aircraft from 29 countries participating in "Mobility Guardian 2019" exercises. Photo by SSgt. Dustin Miller/U.S. Air Force
Sept. 9 (UPI) -- The U.S. Air Mobility Command's "Mobility Guardian 2019" exercise, with over 4,000 participating personnel and dozens of international aircraft, began at Fairchild Air Force Base over the weekend.
The three-week exercise is the largest full-spectrum readiness exercise to date, and will be held at training areas and facilities at and around Fairchild AFB and Spokane, Wash., where it is located, AMC said on Monday.
"Mobility Guardian" involves aircraft and personnel from 29 participating countries, as well as 46 U.S. military planes, among them the KC-10 Extender, KC-135 Stratotanker, C-5 Super Galaxy, C-17 Globemaster III and C-130H/J Hercules cargo planes.
"The future of warfare will be increasingly joint," Lt. Col. Joseph Monaco, Mobility Guardian exercise director, said in a press release. "This exercise is an unparalleled opportunity to develop joint-minded Airmen who can integrate seamlessly with soldiers, sailors and marines to compete and, if necessary, win amidst great power adversaries."
Scenarios include joint forcible entry and airfield seizure and a joint mission between Air Force airdrop crews and Army Airborne units. The exercises take place across Washington State, and incorporate contingency response and humanitarian relief situations.
"At Mobility Guardian, we intend to challenge our aeromedical evacuation force to initiate a Theater Aeromedical Evacuation System and transmit the casualty flow in a near-peer type environment," said Lt. Col. Caroline Mendoza, lead aeromedical evacuation planner.
They are designed to elicit a real-world feel while focusing on AMC core competencies: the diverse missions of airlift, air refueling, aeromedical evacuation and global air mobility support. Practice in the cooperation of the various military branches is the goal.
The exercise is held every other year, with the first one held in 2017 as a reborn version of the Air Mobility Rodeo, which had been canceled in 2013 with the budget sequester by Congress.
"Unmatched rapid global mobility exists because of the ready and resilient airmen who execute the mission day in and day out," said Gen. Maryann Miller, commander of the AMC. "Training exercises such as Mobility Guardian are critical to ensuring our airmen are able to keep AMC's promise to always be there for those who depend on us, both today and tomorrow."