Australia: Pentagon Adds Warplanes To Asia-Pacific Buildup Against China

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Stars and Stripes
August 21, 2013

Growing US presence in Australia to include aircraft
By Seth Robson

F-16 Fighting Falcons conduct a training mission over Misawa Air Base, Japan, February 14, 2013

YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan: The U.S. is preparing to add aircraft to its military presence in Australia, which will include 2,500 Marines rotating through the northern port of Darwin starting in 2016.

This summer’s rotation has involved about 250 personnel, but that will increase to a 1,150-strong force next year, including an aviation support contingent at Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Base Darwin, along with four heavy-lift helicopters, according to Australian officials.

More than 300 Marines and sailors, along with 12 F/A-18 Hornets and a KC-130 Hercules from Marine Aircraft Group 12, are training Down Under this month as part of the Southern Frontier 2013 exercise, according to U.S. Marine Corps Pacific.

Now the commander of Pacific Air…

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