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168th Wing enables Fighter Support over the Pacific during Agile Reaper 24-1

  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Julie Avey
  • 168th Wing

Airmen from the 168th Wing support Agile Reaper 24-1, providing combat refueling capabilities to the 3rd Air Expeditionary Wing F-22 Raptors and airlift for cargo and passenger assets traveling from Joint Base Elemendorf-Richardson, Alaska, to Guam and multiple locations across the Pacific. As part of the collaborative exercise, the 168th Wing Airmen project airpower across the Indo-Pacific region while employing agile combat force capabilities.

The Agile Reaper exercise stands as a strategic testament to the United States’ unwavering commitment to upholding the security and stability of the Pacific region. It operates on a hub-and-spoke concept of operations, with an operations center, or hub, situated at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, and four dispersed locations acting as the spokes, collectively projecting power.

The 168th Wing is expanding operations throughout the region, refueling multiple sorties across the hub-and-spoke operations, allowing aircraft to fly further distances. The austere environments where the Airmen conduct operations during the exercise require adaptability on the fly.

“While operating in the agile combat environment, flexibility is key to sustaining operations,” said Col. Benjamin Doyle, 168th Operations Group commander. “Our Airmen are force multipliers and demonstrate the skills and strengths required to adapt and carry out operations in austere environments from the cold of the Arctic to the heat of the South Pacific and beyond.”

Through the Total Force integration of Air National Guard, Regular Air Force active duty members, and Air Force reservists, the Airmen participating in the Agile Reaper exercise are honing their skills as mission-ready Airmen in an operational environment, significantly enhancing their force generation capabilities. The exercise serves as a comprehensive test of the force’s ability to conduct operations when implementing agile combat employment.

ACE exercises train Airmen to operate from different locations, emphasizing the ability to deploy, survive, and operate. The 168th Airmen have diverse multi-capable skills to enable agile combat employment in an operationally limited and relevant environment.

“This collaborative effort is a testament to the strength and effectiveness of our military strategy,” said Doyle. “We train together in exercises like Agile Reaper to fight together as one cohesive Air Expeditionary Wing.”

Strategic competitors are increasingly threatening regional interests across the Indo-Pacific, negatively impacting security, sovereignty, and prosperity. The 168th Wing is partnering with the 3rd Wing and engaging with local communities in the Indo-Pacific to resolve these challenges by relying on each other’s strengths to improve interoperability and mutual understanding.