U.S. Air Force B-2 Spirit stealth bombers conducted a long-range, long duration strategic bomber mission north of the Arctic Circle, on June 18, the service announced.
During the mission, the bombers from USAF’s 509th Bomb Wing (509 BW) based at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri conducted integration and interoperability training with Norwegian F-35 Lightning II stealth fighter jets.
A KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refueling tanker from the 100th Air Refueling Wing (100 ARW) based at RAF Mildenhall, England, enabled the B-2s to complete the round trip from Whiteman AFB.
“NATO’s 5th-gen capability and integration is critical for air superiority and enables precision engagement in the most highly contested environments,” said Gen. Jeff Harrigian, U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa commander. “Operations and engagements with our allies and partners, in the Arctic region and elsewhere, demonstrate and strengthen our shared commitment to global security and stability.”
According to a statement from the U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa (USAFE-AFAFRICA), these bomber missions represent U.S. commitment to our allies and enhance regional security.
“We will continue to work with our Nordic allies and conduct Arctic missions to ensure mission readiness and interoperability”, the USAFE-AFAFRICA statement added.
The B-2’s characteristics give it the unique ability to penetrate an enemy’s most sophisticated defenses and threaten its most valued, and heavily defended, targets. Its capability to penetrate air defenses and threaten effective retaliation provides a strong, effective deterrent and combat force.