An RAF Waddington-based intelligence gathering aircraft has taken part in a major US-led demonstration exercise in Europe with other European NATO Allies.
An RC-135W Rivet Joint aircraft from 51 Squadron, which is part of the RAF’s Intelligence Surveillance Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance Force, took part in the exercise. The Rivet Joint aircraft joined other aircraft from the US Air Force, US Navy, and The Royal Netherlands Air Force to conduct two exercise scenarios.
The US-led exercise is designed to test and demonstrate the ability of the US forces and their NATO allies, including the UK, to integrate the command-and-control procedures needed to work together. The US have designated this exercise as a ‘Joint All-Domain Command and Control Demonstration’ activity, meaning that the activities are aimed at showing that US and NATO Allies are able to integrate Air, Maritime, Land, Cyber and Space activities into a coordinated exercise to rehearse possible future operations.
General Jeff Harrigian, the United States Air Forces in Europe commander, said:
The exercise is a part of the US National Defence Strategy and demonstrated the ability to bring military assets together from NATO allies into the Baltic Sea to generate firepower inside an area that an adversary believes to be protected through anti-access, area denial technology. A second element of the exercise demonstrated the ability to, defend infrastructure to allow this force projection.
Group Captain Jim Beldon MBE the Deputy Commander of the RAF’s ISTAR Force said:
Photo credit: Sgt Nicholas Howe RAF