Israel, Vietnam participating in RIMPAC for first time

This year’s Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC), set to happen on June 27 to August 2, is an edition of firsts. Twenty-six nations, 47 surface ships, five submarines, 18 national land forces, more than 200 aircraft, and more than 25,000 personnel are set to participate.

“This is the first time Brazil, Israel, Sri Lanka and Vietnam are participating in RIMPAC,” the US 3rd Fleet said.

“Additional firsts include New Zealand serving as sea combat commander and Chile serving as combined force maritime component commander. This is the first time a non-founding RIMPAC nation (Chile) will hold a component commander leadership position,” it added.

According to 3rd Fleet, RIMPAC 2018 will feature live firing of a Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) from a US Air Force aircraft, surface to ship missiles by the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force, and a Naval Strike Missile (NSM) from a launcher on the back of a Palletized Load System (PLS) by the US Army.

This is the first time a land based unit will participate in the live fire event during RIMPAC.

Participant nations are Australia, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Colombia, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, the Republic of Korea, the Republic of the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tonga, the United Kingdom, the United States and Vietnam.

“Participating nations and forces will exercise a wide range of capabilities and demonstrate the inherent flexibility of maritime forces. These capabilities range from disaster relief and maritime security operations to sea control and complex warfighting. The relevant, realistic training program includes amphibious operations, gunnery, missile, anti-submarine and air defense exercises, as well as counter-piracy operations, mine clearance operations, explosive ordnance disposal, and diving and salvage operations,” US 3rd fleet said.