The United States US is simultaneously holding two joint war games around China. Beijing is reportedly deploying an aircraft carrier close to one of the exercise sites. Washington and its partners’ exercise scenarios are designed to include countering nuclear attacks and Chinese attacks.
Nuclear attack drills were held in South Korea starting Monday (21/8/2023). The exercise, which will last until August 31, uses a total war scenario. Yonhap news agency reported that there were at least 30 types of exercises in the codenamed “Ulchi Shield of Freedom” exercise.
“This exercise was designed with a scenario as close as possible to a potential factual event,” said the Office of the Joint Staff of the South Korean Armed Forces.
From the US-South Korea, the troops involved represent four dimensions, namely land, sea, air and space.
Seoul deployed 20 US and South Korean-made fighter jets in the exercise. The task of these jets is to chase and take down enemy planes and missiles. South Korea will again fire its domestic missile, the Cheongung, in the exercise.
In addition to the US-South Korea, the exercise will involve soldiers from Australia, Italy, Britain, France, Canada, New Zealand and Greece. Soldiers from two ASEAN member countries, namely the Philippines and Thailand, were also present. While soldiers from other countries attended some of the exercises.
Filipino media, the Manila Times, reported that the Philippines did not take part in the exercise on 25-31 August 2023.
The Philippines failed to participate because they did not have large warships. The scenario for the exercise west of Palawan, Philippines, included aircraft and helicopter landings on ships. The US deployed the USS America amphibious ship, Japan sent the JSS Izumo, while Australia operated HMAS Canberra. All three ships can accommodate planes and helicopters.
According to the Manila Times. The exercise was support to start on Wednesday (23/8/2023).After the exercise, the ship commanders will visit Manila. They will meet commanders of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and show support for Manila.
Last week, AFP spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Enrico Ileto announced that 111 Filipino troops were on the deck of HMAS Canberra. They joined 1,200 soldiers and 700 Australian police in the exercise which took place in Philippine and Australian waters In addition, Canberra also sent a number of other ships in the exercise.
The US will send 150 marines to join the exercise. The US Marines will primarily be present as support in the exercise. They will join later when the training fleet has arrived on site. Australia, among others, sent an MV-22B Osprey aircraft to land in Palawan. While in Zambales, they will focus on landing exercises from the sea. The trainees will also fire cannons and rockets at targets around the training site.
Ileto’s counterpart, Lt. Col. The ships are approaching the site of a joint Australia-Japan-US exercise.
Aguilar said Manila intended to conduct a training period to try again to deliver supplies to the Ayungin reef. The reef is one of the Beijing-Manila disputed sites in the South China Sea. China calls it the Ren’ai reef.
On August 5, 2023, Chinese ships barred a Filipino vessel from approaching the reef.