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F-16's refuel during COPE NORTH 17

A three-ship formation of U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the18th Aggressor Squadron fly alongside a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker and wait to receive in-flight fuel during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A three-ship formation of U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the18th Aggressor Squadron fly alongside a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker and wait to receive in-flight fuel during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron approaches a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker to receive in-flight fuel during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron approaches a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker to receive in-flight fuel during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron makes it way to recieve in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron makes it way to recieve in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force  F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron banks left after recieving in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron banks left after recieving in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jeremy Culliton, 909th Aerial Refueling Squadron instructor boom operator, refuels an F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 14th Fighter Squadron during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jeremy Culliton, 909th Aerial Refueling Squadron instructor boom operator, refuels an F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 14th Fighter Squadron during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron banks left after recieving in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron banks left after recieving in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 14th Fighter Squadron banks right after recieving in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 14th Fighter Squadron banks right after recieving in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer assigned to the 9th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer assigned to the 9th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)
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U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)
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A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)
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A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)
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A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron receives in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron banks right after recieving in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)
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A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron banks right after recieving in-flight fuel from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker during Cope North 17, March 2, 2017. The exercise includes 22 total flying units and more than 2,700 personnel from three countries and continues the growth of strong, interoperable relationships within the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through integration of airborne and land-based command and control assets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keith James)

PACIFIC OCEAN -- U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons from the 18th Aggressor Squadron, assigned to Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, and the 14th Fighter Squadron, assigned to Misawa Air Base, Japan prepare for in-flight refueling during COPE NORTH, March 2, 2017. The COPE NORTH exercise continues to develop a common operating picture using U.S., Japanese, and Australian airborne and land-based command and control assets, ultimately refining warfighter integration between our militaries.

 

COPE NORTH was previously held in Japan as often as four times a year and was moved to Andersen AFB, Guam, in 1999. The exercise is now held once a year and continues to serve as a keystone event to promote stability and security throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific.