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B-1B Lancer bombers arrive in Guam for exercises

A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer conducted training exercises with two Japan Air Self Defense Force F-15 fighters on October 20, 2020. Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force 
A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer conducted training exercises with two Japan Air Self Defense Force F-15 fighters on October 20, 2020. Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force 

Oct. 23 (UPI) -- Four B-1B bombers left Texas this week, arriving in Guam for Bomber Task Force training missions with allied partners, the U.S. Air Force announced.

The B-1B Lancers and about 200 airmen of the Air Force's 9th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron left Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, and arrived at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, on Tuesday.

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On the way, the bombers integrated with 16 F-15 and two F-2 planes of the Japan Air Self-Defense Force for training over the Sea of Japan, the Air Force said on Thursday in a statement.

They also conducted a training exercise with the amphibious assault ship USS America in the western Pacific Ocean.

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"Every bomber task force is important because they accomplish both tactical and strategic objectives," said Lt. Col. Ryan Stallsworth, commander of the 9th EBS, a unit of the Global Strike Command. "As we conduct training operations, we are able to increase our bomber force lethality, readiness and experience across the force. It also demonstrates the department of defense's ability to operate in an agile fashion to the world."

The visit to Guam comes after the Air Force adjusted its force employment model, enabling strategic bombers like to B-1B to be forward deployed in the Indo-Pacific region from a broader array of worldwide locations.

The plan serves the National Defense Strategy's objectives of strategic predictability and operational unpredictability, the Air Force said on Thursday.

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"Every one of these operations is an opportunity for us to gain critical experience and become efficient in the deployment and execution processes," Stallsworth said. "The U.S. Air Force is willing to and capable of operating out of different strategic locations. Our dynamic force employment construct helps us focus on being operationally unpredictable while still being strategically predictable."

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