This is the moment a US B-2 Stealth Bomber “drops in” to an Australian air base to take part in training exercises in the Indo-Pacific region.
The US Air Force B-2 Spirit landed at RAAF Base Amberley in the Australian state of Queensland.
The Royal Australian Air Force shared the footage on social media on 24th March with the message: “A United States Air Force B-2 Spirit from 509th Bomb Wing dropped in this week, along with the Commander of US military forces in the Indo-Pacific, Admiral Chris Aquilino.
“Admiral Aquilino’s visit to Australia was an opportunity for him to view US Air Force capability as part of enhanced US force posture initiatives, and to see our forces working together.
“Admiral Aquilino’s visit signifies the close defence relationship between the US and Australia, and our continued commitment to ensure a secure, stable, and prosperous Indo-Pacific.”
Pacific Air Forces (PAF), a Major Command of the US Air Force and US Indo-Pacific Command, said in a statement on 24th March: “A U.S. Air Force B-2 Spirit flew from the 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, to Royal Australian Air Force Base Amberley, Australia, March 23, 2022, to execute training with the Royal Australian Air Force to increase interoperability with a critical ally and operate forward in the Indo-Pacific region.
“The U.S. and Australia maintain a robust relationship underpinned by shared democratic values, common interests, and cultural affinities. The alliance is an anchor for peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region and around the world.
“Once in Australian airspace, the B-2 teamed up with a KC-135 Stratotanker from the Alaska Air National Guard to complete aerial refueling before integrating with eight fighter aircraft – two Royal Australian Air Force F-35A Lightning IIs, two RAAF EA-18 Growlers, two RAAF F/A-18F Super Hornets and two U.S. Air Force F-16C Aggressors – to conduct training operations.
PAF continued: “The B-2 then landed at Amberley – for the first time – and conducted a crew swap before becoming airborne, integrating with F-22 Raptors from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, and returning back to Whiteman.”
“U.S. Navy Adm. John C. Aquilino, commander of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, and Royal Australian Air Force Air Vice-Marshal Joe Iervasi, Air Commander Australia, observed the B-2 aircraft on the ground at Amberley and met with the air and ground crews.”
Aquilino said: “This is the most consequential theater with the most challenging security issues… and advancing our interoperability with critical allies like Australia is critical to maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific.
“There are many aspects that are going on daily to continue to move the security relationship forward in a positive way to provide deterrence, prevent war, and maintain peace and stability within the region.”
Air Vice-Marshal Iervasi stated: “This is our most important relationship that we have in the Indo-Pacific region.
“We have enduring bonds extending back for decades and we share common values and interests and we will continue to collaborate and keep this partnership strong.”
PAF said: “During the more than 50-hour round-trip trek to Australia and back, the B-2 demonstrated the credibility of our forces to address a complex and uncertain security environment and further demonstrating the U.S. Air Forces’ global reach capabilities.
“U.S. forces along with our Australian counterparts continuously increase force posture capability through recurring exercises and engagements, including aircraft training missions, contributing to a more interoperable and resilient force.”