RCAF contribution to RIMPAC 2018 and RAdm Bob Auchterlonie on the world’s largest maritime exercise

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Aloha, welcome back to Defence Team News on location at RIMPAC. I’m Shelley Van Hoof.

And I’m Lt(N) Jeff Lura. We’re reporting from Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. Here are the headlines at Defence.

A Canadian Officer is serving at the very highest levels of RIMPAC 2018. Rear-Admiral Bob Auchterlonie, Commander of Maritime Forces Pacific in Esquimalt, BC, serves as Deputy Commander of RIMPAC’s Combined Task Force, alongside American, Chilean, Japanese, and Australian leaders.

We caught up with Admiral Auchterlonie for his views on the world’s largest maritime exercise:

What makes RIMPAC an important exercise for military personnel?

Well, in the simplest terms, it’s the largest maritime exercise in the world. So RIMPAC itself, there’s 25 nations, there’s more than 50 ships and submarines, there’s more than 25,000 soldiers, sailors, airmen, airwomen, special operations force operators, over 200 aircraft, and as I said, from 25 different countries. The fact is, it is the largest exercise in the world, the largest maritime exercise in the world, and that’s what makes it different.

What is Canada’s role in RIMPAC this year?

Well, Canada is a founding partner in RIMPAC. In 1971, we were one of the first three countries. Canada, US, and Australia were the founding partners of RIMPAC and since then, we’ve participated in all 26 RIM of the Pacific exercises. Our role this year, it’s a great force generation opportunity, so it’s a training opportunity for our naval forces, our air forces, our land forces and special operations forces.

RIMPAC is bigger and better every year, and it keeps getting bigger and more inclusive. For example, 10 years ago, in 2008, there was only 10 countries. This year, there’s 25 nations that are participating, over 25,000 folks, so that’s what’s new. It keeps getting bigger and better, more inclusive in the Indo-Asia-Pacific.

Canada is a Pacific nation. We are a strong, reliable partner in the Indo-Asia-Pacific, and that’s been reinforced by our Defence Policy, Strong, Secure, and Engaged.

Thank you very much.

Okay, thanks very much.

A CP-140 Aurora Long Range Patrol aircraft is currently operating out of US Marine Corps Base Hawaii, as the Royal Canadian Air Force contribution to RIMPAC 2018.

For more on what the Royal Canadian Air Forces is bringing to operations here on the ground, we spoke with Maj Dan Klco:

So, I have two roles here at RIMPAC. I’m the Long-Range Patrol Detachment Commander, as well as the overall Air Task Force Commander.

And how is the Royal Canadian Air Force supporting RIMPAC 2018?

We have two roles right now supporting RIMPAC 2018. First role is a direct flying role with the CP-140. We fly anti-submarine warfare missions almost every second day, as well as a support role with the deployed mission support centre, it provides administrative and logistical support to 172.1 task force, which is all the P3s that are here at RIMPAC.

And what has been the coolest part of RIMPAC so far?

The coolest part about RIMPAC has been working with all of my other equivalents. So we have multi-nation force here, and working with the Australians, the crew from New Zealand, the Japanese, the South Koreans and the Americans, has really opened up our eyes in how we do things compared to how they do things, and how we can do things better.

Thank you very much.

You’re welcome.

That’s it for us. Thank you so much for watching. See you next time…

…for Defence Team News!

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