Three B-2 Stealth Bombers Have Deployed To Guam In Support of U.S. Pacific Command’s Bomber Assurance and Deterrence Mission

Jan 11 2018 - 10 Comments

The U.S. Air Force has just deployed three B-2 Spirits stealth bombers to Guam.

Three B-2 Spirit strategic stealth bombers along with approximately 200 Airmen belonging to the 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman Air Force Base, were deployed to Andersen Air Force Base, in support of U.S. Pacific Command’s (PACOM) Bomber Assurance and Deterrence mission.

The stealth bombers, are due to be involved in what the U.S. Pacific Command defined a “short-term deployment” during which they will conduct “local and regional training sorties, and will integrate capabilities with key regional partners, ensuring bomber crews maintain a high state of readiness and crew proficiency.”

A B-2 Spirit, assigned to the 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman Air Force Base, taxis on the flightline Jan. 8, 2018, at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam. Approximately 200 Airmen and three B-2 Spirits from Whiteman Air Force Base (AFB), Missouri, deployed to Andersen AFB in support of U.S. Pacific Command’s (PACOM) Bomber Assurance and Deterrence mission. U.S. Strategic Command bombers regularly rotate through the Indo-Pacific region to conduct U.S. PACOM-led air operations, providing leaders with deterrent options to maintain regional stability. During this short-term deployment, the B-2s will conduct local and regional training sorties and will integrate capabilities with key regional partners, ensuring bomber crews maintain a high state of readiness and crew proficiency (Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Joshua Smoot) .

Interestingly, the B-2s have joined the “several” B-1B Lancers deployed to Guam to support the U.S. Pacific Command’s (USPACOM) Continuous Bomber Presence mission. The Bones (using the nickname popular among their aircrews) have been involved in several shows of force around the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, but they can’t carry any kind of nuclear weapon. So, the B-2 deployment in the region brings a nuclear bomber capability closer to North Korea.

Still, it must be noticed that the U.S. Strategic Command bombers regularly rotate through the region to conduct U.S. PACOM-led air operations, providing leaders with deterrent options to maintain regional stability. The B-2s periodically perform round-trip missions from their homebase in Missouri, from where they have already proved to be able to hit targets located anywhere across the world. The last time the B-2s deployed to Guam was in August 2016 when the 509th BW conducted another short-term deployment: exploiting the presence of both the B-52 Stratofortress, B-1B Lancer and B-2 Spirit, on Aug. 17, 2016, the U.S. Air Force was able to launch the bomber trio in an unprecedented coordinated operation in the U.S Pacific Command AOR (Area Of Operations). The three aircraft launched in sequence from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, performed a flyover and then dispersed to conduct simultaneous operations in the South China Sea and Northeast Asia.

Two of the three B-2s that are currently in Guam departed on Jan. 7, 2017 and arrived at Andersen Air Force Base on Jan. 8 using radio callsigns MYTEE 21, MYTEE 22.  What would’ve been MYTEE23 went tech so it arrived on Jan. 9 alone.

H/T to our friend @AircraftSpots for providing additional details about the deployed bombers.