The U.S. military is working with Australia, Japan, South Korea and other allies to bring them up to speed on the power and potential of fifth-generation aircraft like the F-35 and F-22.

Pacific Air Forces, the Hawaii-based major command whose area of responsibility stretches to the Asian coastline, is leading the effort to integrate the F-35 with allies, according to Col. Art Primas, the command’s international affairs division chief.

American pilots are leveraging their “experiences with our fifth-gen fighters” to help allies better understand the unique capabilities of the Lockheed Martin Corp.-made F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and F-22 Raptor.

The Defense Department is constantly evaluating what planes, exercises and intelligence it needs to bolster ties in the region, which contains 60 percent of the world’s population, officials said.

New Training

In a few years, the Pentagon may change “the flavors” of annual exercises to include new training with fifth-generation platforms, added Col. Kelly Lawson, PACAF chief of current operations. The training may include replacing old missions sets with new ones and hosting more joint-service operations and multilateral training.

As new and emerging threats appear, “we’re evolving to be as efficient as we can,” he said.

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