North American Aerospace Defense Command conducted a bomber intercept with U.S. Strategic Command over Alberta, Canada on May 22 to demonstrate air defense capabilities of Canada and the United States.
NORAD CF-18s conducted an intercept of USSTRATCOM B-52s, that were en route to U.S. Indo-Pacific Command’s exercise Northern Edge 2019 which took place May 13-24. The B-52s simulated a long-range bomber threat entering the Canadian Air Defense Identification Zone.
“This training offered a valuable opportunity to practice a critical skill for the defense of the homelands,” said General Terrence O’Shaughnessy, Commander NOR AD and U.S. Northern Command. “Working with our other combatant commands enhances our collaborative efforts to function as a global force with a unified purpose – to deter, detect and, if necessary, defeat any threat to North America.”
An Air Defense Identification Zone is a buffer zone of internationally recognized airspace surrounding North America that facilitates the identification of aircraft well before they would enter our sovereign airspace.
NORAD forces are on alert around the clock, every day. For over 60 years, NORAD aircraft have identified and intercepted potential air threats to North America in the execution of the command’s aerospace warning and aerospace control missions.
U.S. Northern Command’s area of responsibility and NORAD’s area of operations includes vast reaches of air, land and sea within the Arctic region. The defense of North America is NORAD and NORTHCOM’s number one priority.
Northern Edge 2019 (NE19) is one in a series of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command exercises in 2019 that prepares joint forces to respond to crises in the Indo-Pacific. NE19 is the largest military training exercise scheduled in Alaska this year with virtual and live participants from all over the United States. The exercise is designed to sharpen participants’ tactical combat skills, to improve command, control, and communication relationships, and to develop interoperable plans and programs across the joint force.