Quantcast
Latest Stories

PH, US air forces show off firepower at Clark

By

US and Philippine Marines simulate an amphibious landing as part of RP-US Amphibious Landing Exercise on a beach in San Antonio, Zambales on October 23, 2011. AFP FILE PHOTO

CLARK FREEPORT—In a rare exhibit, the Philippine and United States armed forces taking part in this year’s Balikatan military exercises on Saturday presented their aircraft for public viewing, turning the Philippine Air Force’s (PAF) Haribon flight line here into a large amusement park for children and civilians.

The display of air power was mounted to “let the people see what we are using,” Maj. Gen. Virgilio Domingo, the Philippines’ Balikatan exercise director, told reporters. Viewing was free.

Brig. Gen. Richard Simcock II, head of flight training at Clark, said the Balikatan activities were “not directed at any particular country in the region.”

“The exercises aim to improve our interoperability to enable us to address any crisis, manmade or natural,” said Simcock, replying to an Inquirer question on whether adjustments had been made in Balikatan, in light of the tension between North and South Korea.

Domingo said he was not sure if this was the first time an exhibit of this kind was staged under Balikatan, which is being conducted here for the 29th time.

Balikatan had been a periodic military exercise until the Philippine Senate rejected on Sept. 16, 1991, the 1947 Philippine-US military bases agreement.

The Balikatan resumed when the Senate approved the Visiting Forces Agreement in 1999.

Balikatan camps, however, are off-limits to reporters and civilians.

The US Marine Corps put on display an F-18 fighter jet, also known as a Hornet, an MV-22 transport plane, also called Osprey, and the KC-130 carrier.

On the Philippine side were displayed an UH-1H (Huey), an MG-520 attack helicopter, the trainer aircraft SF-260 and S-211, and the light attack turboprop OV-10 (Bronco).

Najal Flores, one of 80 students at Tacondo Elementary School in Barangay Margot in Angeles City, scampered from one aircraft to another.

Showcase for kids

“It’s their first time and they’re excited,” said Arsenia Mallare, the teacher who accompanied them to the exhibit.

Their unofficial tour guide, Technical Sgt. Ilinda Johnson, said it was not a problem showing the kids around the military hardware in the sweltering heat.

Cadet Maj. Rhea Andaya, a business administration student at the University of the Philippines, said she appreciated the exhibit. She said that because the Balikatan had been “clouded by issues,” the exhibit helped explain what the US forces were doing in the country.

“You can see the assurance of readiness of the PAF,” said Andaya, who was with 10 first class cadets of her school’s Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC).

US Marine pilot Capt. Brian Radler found himself swamped with questions from the students. “What does your F-18 jet do? How far does it go? These were the stuff of queries I got,” said Radler, who arrived on Thursday for the Balikatan.

Lt. Col. Enrico Canaya, PAF Balikatan director at Clark, said the joint training was “not about modern or old (aircraft).”

“In terms of procedures and doctrines, we are pretty much the same,” said Canaya. “This gives our Filipino pilots the opportunity to gain more knowledge on how the US operates. We learn techniques and tactics. Our pilots benefit from the exchange.”

Domingo admitted that the PAF aircraft were not at all sophisticated compared to the US air fleet. “But the aircraft we have does service for our armed forces,” he said.

Simcock said the United States was not making a permanent presence in the Philippines. “We have a rotational presence for interoperability,” he said.

According to him, the Balikatan “gives exceptional training day and night, and air to ground.”


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Balikatan military exercises , Clark Air Base , Haribon flight , Philippine Air Force , Philippine armed forces , United States armed forces

  • oh_noh

    philippine firepower, really???

  • mangtom

    bugoybanngers: first, have you been sniffing glue again? What do you mean by FOLLING? second, don’t blame others for the failure of the AFP to build itself up. The AFP would be stronger if the top brass don’t steal the AFP funds: for example, 1. “pabaon” – millions of pesos for retiring generals, 2. top AFP officers involved with the illegal transaction of millions of pesos during a convention in Russia.

    Now get to DSWD for rehab-fast.

  • mangtom

    PHtaxpayer: keep on dreaming, little one.

  • marlo concepcion

    mag-counter strike n lang tayo



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
Advertisement

News

  • Napoles tags over 100 officials in pork scam – Lacson
  • Vitangcol to sue Czech envoy
  • Senator’s kickback from pork bigger than those of Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – Lacson
  • 43 out of 414 Etihad passengers yet to be found, tested for MERS-CoV – Palace
  • Maid confesses in killing of 2 and stabbing of employer in Laguna
  • Sports

  • Caguioa blasts ‘no heart, soft’ Ginebra on Twitter
  • San Mig Coffee grinds out win over Alaska to force decider
  • UP nips St. Benilde; Adamson blasts RTU in Filoil women’s caging
  • Kevin Garnett responds to Raptors’ GM F word
  • Albert Pujols hits 500th HR of major league career
  • Lifestyle

  • Entering the monkhood a rite of passage
  • Haneda International Airport: A destination on its own
  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Entertainment

  • Bollywood Oscars, film stars come to Florida
  • Ex-Fox exec denies allegations in sex abuse suit
  • Kris Aquino backtracks, says Herbert Bautista and her are ‘best friends’
  • Summer preview: Chris Pratt enters a new ‘Galaxy’
  • Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in US
  • Business

  • SM to rebuild Tacloban hospital
  • PSEi slips after 4-day rally
  • Toyota sells 2.58 million vehicles, outselling GM
  • McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline
  • SEC approves SM’s P15B retail bond offer
  • Technology

  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Opinion

  • One-dimensional diplomacy: A cost-benefit analysis of Manila’s security deal with Washington
  • No ordinary illness
  • Reforest mountains with fire trees and their kind
  • Day of the Earth
  • When will Chinese firm deliver new coaches?
  • Global Nation

  • Filipinos coming home from Mideast must obtain MERS clearance – DOH
  • US Secret Service in Manila ahead of Obama visit
  • Palace thanks Estrada for successful HK mission
  • Hong Kong accepts PH apology; sanctions also lifted
  • China won’t budge, wants PH gov’t to apologize to HK
  • Marketplace