The U.S. Air Force will forward deploy B-1B Lancer supersonic bombers in Guam early this month, partly to better cope with North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats, a recent statement by the Pacific Air Forces showed on its website.
The B-1B Lancers will be deployed to the U.S. Pacific Command’s Andersen Air Force Base on Guam to replace the B-52 bombers, the first time in 10 years that the airplanes will be stationed on the key island. The last time the bombers were sent to the island was in April 2006, with the latest move seen as a sign of Washington’s resolve in guarding the so-called Indo-Asia-Pacific region.
“With a large weapon capacity and exceptional standoff strike capability, the B-1 will provide the U.S. Pacific Command and its regional allies and partners with a credible, strategic power projection platform,” the statement said.
The 34th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron is due to arrive in Guam on Saturday and is being deployed in response to the heightened threat of China and North Korea. Guam is a U.S.-controlled island territory in the western Pacific, some 1,550 miles east of the Philippines.