Two B-52 strategic bombers from Barksdale Air Force Base located in Louisiana were ordered by the Pentagon to carry out “bomber assurance and deterrence” in the beginning of this month to bloster regional allies in the Asia-Pacific against Chinese maritime expansion, reports Bill Gertz, an American security analyst, in a commentary recently written for the Washington Times.
With the support of Royal Australian Air Force ground forces, the two B-52s flew directly to Delamere bombing range in northern Australia to conduct a bombing run. After unloading their conventional bombs on the range, the two craft headed back to Barksdale Air Force Base in the US. It took 44 hours for the US Air Force to complete its “bomber assurance and deterrence” on July 1, according to Gertz.
Admiral Cecil D. Haney, the commander of the US Strategic Command which is in charge of the US strategic bombers told Gertz that the “bomber assurance and deterrence” mission is one of many ways for the US to demonstrates its commitment to a stable and peaceful Indo-Asia Pacific region. While pointing out that the operation was intended to send a strategic message, Haney declined to identify the recipient of the message.