The F-22 Raptor, one of America’s most sophisticated and revered fighter jets, touched down in the Philippines for the first time last week amid the United States’ ongoing efforts to establish military installations and bases in the archipelago.

Touch Down for the First Time

US Air Force  F-22A Raptors from the 525th Fighter Squadron at Joint Base Elmendorf–Richardson, Alaska, with support from a KC-135 Stratotanker from the 909th Air Refueling Squadron at Kadena Air Base, Japan, flew to Clark Air Base in the Philippines on March 13 to integrate and train with the Philippines Air Force (PAF) 5th Fighter Wing.

In a statement, US Air Force Raptor pilot Capt. Karl Schroeder said that this is the first time for the fifth-generation aircraft to travel and land in the Philippines, a significant “milestone with a regional ally aids in providing stability and security to the Indo-Pacific.”

Aside from training, the trip to Clark seeks to accomplish agile combat employment with the help of a small team of Airmen, as well as acquaint themselves with the geography and topography of the Philippine archipelago.