June 3, 2004 (by Eric L. Palmer) - Airmen and F-16s from the 36th Fighter Squadron at Osan Air Base, South Korea, have deployed to Paya Lebar AB in Singapore to train with Singaporean Airmen during exercise Commando Sling 04-3.
The exercise runs until June 14 and provides a U.S. presence in Southeast Asia and realistic dissimilar air-to-air combat training for forces of both nations.
Lt. Col. Mark DeLong, commander of the deployed 36th FS
, said the exercise is one of the best training opportunities for his pilots. Because of limited training with other aircraft in Korea, the experience they have gained here is invaluable.
Nearly every sortie or mission is against dissimilar aircraft. Acoording to DeLong, "The knowledge and skills of some of our pilots has quadrupled in the short amount of time we've been here."
The exercise includes Osan F-16 Fighting Falcons, and Singaporean F-5, A-4 and F-16C aircraft.