By LTJG Francesca Lapoint, VP-5 Public Affairs
A P-8A Poseidon aircraft, assigned to the “Mad Foxes” of Patrol Squadron (VP) 5, a combat air crew, and a maintenance detachment participated in exercise Trident Juncture 2018, Oct.. 19-30. The exercise took place in Norway, surrounding areas of the North Atlantic, and the Baltic Sea, including Iceland, Finland, and Sweden.
Trident Juncture is NATO’s largest exercise. The exercise is comprised of 50,000 personnel from all 29 Allies, around 65 vessels, 150 aircraft, and 10,000 vehicles. Some major U.S. elements of the exercise included Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group and the Iwo Jima Expeditionary Strike Group.
“It's an honor to be part of one of the most complex and visible exercises the United States participates in,” said Lt. Jon Glassman, the mission commander. “It's incredibly important, especially in today's tense and uncertain climate to reassure our allies of our commitment to a collective self-defense against aggression. By training with our amazing partner nations, we elevate our readiness and create bonds that build trust and ensure our ability to operate when the need arises. It's extremely rewarding to tactically employ our aircraft and build awareness amongst our friends of the P-8s capabilities and what we can bring to the fight.”
Trident Juncture is designed to demonstrate NATO’s ability to plan and coordinate a major collective defense operation to deter potential adversaries. The exercise varies from ground troop training at the tactical level to command and control over large elements of the NATO force.
In addition to VP-5’s support, both the VP-9 “Golden Eagles” and VP-26 “Tridents” provided P-8A aircraft to participate in the exercise assisting in multiple Anti-Submarine Warfare and Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance missions. VP-5’s combat air crew, CAC-3, also was given the opportunity to host five distinguished guests from the Icelandic Coast Guard (ICG) and the US Defense Attaché from the Norwegian Embassy to demo P-8A capabilities and discuss the Trident Juncture exercise.