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News | July 8, 2022

Western Hemisphere air forces prepare for PANAMAX 2022

12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern)

Twelfth Air Force (Air Forces Southern) personnel participated in a Planning in Crisis (PIC) conference June 22-30, in Panama City, Panama, in which air component planners from 10 Caribbean and Latin American countries coordinated air force operations for the upcoming PANAMAX 2022 exercise.

The PANAMAX 2022 scenario will entail conducting simulated security and stability operations to ensure free flow of commerce through the Panama Canal.  Twenty-nine nations will join to form the Multi-National Forces-South (MNFS) coalition and participate in the exercise August 1-12, 2022, from various locations in the U.S.  Unlike previous PANAMAX exercises, personnel, aircraft and supporting equipment movements will be simulated this year.

At the PIC, representatives from the 10 countries’ air forces planned how the air component of the MNFS coalition will support land and sea forces to restore Panama Canal operations and build partner nation relationships and capabilities.

Maj. Gen. Carlos Silva, commander of the Colombian Air Force Air and Space Operations Command, led the conference as the as the Combined Forces Air Component Commander (CFACC) for PANAMAX 2022.  U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen. Sean Choquette, 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern) vice commander and the deputy CFACC for the exercise, also attended.

“Our partnerships in the Western Hemisphere are vital to regional stability and prosperity, and we enhance economic security both here and worldwide by improving our collective response to complex threats in Panama,” said Gen. Choquette.  “By exercising the joint planning process together, we build the professional relationships and friendships essential to quick response in times of crisis.  Regional security is a team effort.”

PANAMAX is a U.S. Southern Command-sponsored, combined annual exercise to strengthen partnerships, enhance readiness and improve interoperability between U.S. Armed Forces and partner nations to build capacity to plan and execute complex multinational operations.