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Joint exercise at Osan wraps up

by Staff Sgt. Eric Burks
51st Fighter Wing Public Affairs

4/16/2010 - OSAN AIR BASE, South Korea (AFNS) -- Airmen of Osan Air Base's 25th Fighter Squadron and South Korea's 237th Tactical Fighter Squadron trained together this week during the spring Buddy Wing exercise that concluded April 15, here.

The exercise is designed to introduce and review tactics, exchange ideas, and improve interoperability between U.S. Air Force and South Korea pilots, maintainers and support members.

The exercise kicked off April 13 as the 237th TFS airmen arrived here in their KA-1 aircraft, followed by an afternoon of academics and briefings with the 25th FS staff. Over the next two days, 25th FS A-10 Thunderbolt II pilots and the KA-1 aircrew participated in air training exercises, flying joint missions based on simulated scenarios.

It was a great opportunity for the Airmen to share valuable knowledge with their allies, said South Korean air force Maj. Jwa-Ryong Park, the 237th TFS intelligence commander and pilot.

"The A-10 pilots are very proficient and have a lot of combat experience," he said. "We have a lot of expertise flying in Korea and are very familiar with the terrain, so there is a lot we can learn from each other."

While the language barrier is always the greatest challenge, Major Park said, the training provided improves coordination and interoperability. For instance, greater familiarity with the different terminologies used during air missions can greatly enhance communication in joint exercises and operations.

Buddy Wing exercises are held here twice annually and the 25th and 36th Fighter Squadrons alternate as hosts.

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