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Language Enabled Airman Supports F-35 Symposium with Japan Air Self-Defense Force

  • Published
  • By Mikala McCurry, AFCLC Outreach Team

Japanese Language Enabled Airman Program Scholar Master Sgt. Daniel Toth provided language and tactical support for the F-35 Lightning II Symposium hosted by the 354th Maintenance Group and the Japan Air Self-Defense Force at Misawa Air Base, Japan.

The symposium was designed to enhance partner interoperability with Japan and other Indo-Pacific regions through a cooperative training initiative. The event brought together U.S. Air Force and JASDF maintainers to discuss best practices in maintaining F-35s, thus strengthening the relationship between the partner nations and enhancing their capabilities.

Because of his knowledge and expertise in the Japanese language and the F-35 aircraft as a maintainer, Toth was able to connect with the JASDF members both culturally and tactically.

“My AFSC came in extremely helpful this time around as the topics discussed are what my job revolves around,” Toth explained. “We discussed maintenance and operational concepts of the F-35, where we were able to thoroughly explain to the JASDF how the USAF does business. A lot of ‘pro-tips’ were handed down to the JASDF, and they were excited and immensely grateful for the insight.”

This event allowed Toth and other Airmen to experience the strengths and importance of partnerships with allies such as Japan.

“It's enlightening to see our allies in action as they were very efficient with their F-35 operations. To see that our allies can operate like this gives you confidence they will make a formidable partner in the
face of a global threat. It's important for the U.S. to continue to support the JASDF so that they can better defend their country while also aiding allies,” Toth said. “It is extremely satisfying being part of this process as an interpreter and as their wingman.”

According to the 35th Fighter Wing at Misawa AB, the F-35 Lightning II aircraft is set to be a centerpiece of air operations for both JASDF and the USAF in the future. This symposium served as a staple event to enhance interoperability and strengthen the U.S. Air Force and our partnership with JASDF.

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