RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany – Allied fighters integrated with two US B-52s during Exercise Frisian Flag in Leeuwarden Air Base, Netherlands on 7 April, 2022.
The Allied fighters from France, Canada, Italy, Germany the United Kingdom and the United States have been participating in the high intensity combat training over the past two weeks. This mission saw both Allied fighters and heavy bombers working together on escort procedures as well conducting strikes against land based targets. This is the second time the US bombers have supported a large-force exercise during this deployment.
This is a prime example of exercising our forces as a collective
"This is a prime example of exercising our forces as a collective," said Gen. Jeff Harrigian, NATO Allied Air Command and U.S. Air Forces in Europe – Air Forces Africa Commander. "We have to take these opportunities to get everyone on the same page. By collaborating with our Allies and partners, we're figuring out what we can do together, so we aren't rushing to failure when it counts."
Aircrew aboard a USAF B-52 during their deployment in Europe as part of the Bomber Task Force. Photo courtesy of the USAF.
Canadian CF-18 during Ex Frisian Flag held at Leeuwarden Air Base, Netherlands. Photo courtesy of Royal Netherlands Air Force.
Frisian Flag is an annual, multinational exercise hosted by the Royal Netherlands Air Force designed to enhance allied fighter readiness and efficacy. Last month, Allied fighter aircraft and support equipment arrived in Leeuwarden to participate in the two-week exercise.
Exercises and operations like this involving Allies and Partners allows the opportunity to train in unfamiliar environments, strengthen relationships and harness the Alliance's collective capabilities. The B-52 bombers are currently operating out of the UK in support of the latest Bomber Task Force deployment.