Skip to main content

Picture This

Seattle Times photographers offer a glimpse into what inspires their best visual reporting.

September 11, 2013 at 10:00 AM

  • Share:
  • Comments (0)
  • Print

Training with troops from Japan

Clear skies and crisp air are good for two things, flying and seeing far. At the Yakima Training Center, on Tuesday, Sept. 10 2013, the 1st Battalion, 229th Aviation Regiment, part of the 16th Combat Aviation Brigade, held its joint live-fire air exercise, using AGM-114 Hellfire missiles and Apache helicopters with the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force's 3rd Anti-Tank Helicopter Battalion, as part of Operation Rising Thunder exercise held by the 7th Infantry Division, based in JBLM.

Even though this is the 20th iteration of Operation Rising Thunder, this is the first time U.S. and Japan have conducted Hellfire operations together. The operation provides the Japanese an opportunity to practice complex live fire routine, perform arms maneuver, use large weapon systems, and exchange tactics with American soldiers who have real combat experience, at a large scale training facility they do not possess in Japan.


With Mount Adams looming in the background, an Apache helicopter, left, armed with AGM-114 Hellfire missiles and a support helicopter, right, fly during a joint live-fire air exercise between American pilots and the the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Forces pilots, using , at the Yakima Training Center, on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013.


Japanese soldiers from the Ground Self-Defense Force's 16th regimental combat team watch a target being destroyed by Hellfire missiles during a joint live-fire air exercise at the Yakima Training Center, on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013.


Maj. General Stephen Lanza, middle, talks to Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force Col. Hirofumi Hamamoto, commander of the 16th Regimental Combat Team, not pictured, through a translator, Lt. Kotaru Kamizono, second from right, during the joint air exercise, in Yakima Training Center, on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013.

For more photos, visit the gallery.

Most Popular Comments
Hide / Show comments
No comments have been posted to this article.
Start the conversation >

The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►