Upcoming Joint U.S.-Israeli Exercise Aims to Improve Interoperability

More than 2,500 U.S. personnel will take part in a joint exercise with Israel next month aimed at improving interoperability, a Pentagon spokesman told reporters today.

Juniper Cobra is a U.S. European Command missile defense exercise with the Israel Defense Forces that will take place March 4 to March 15, Army Col. Rob Manning said.

The exercise is the ninth in a series of biennial Juniper Cobra exercises conducted in Israel between Eucom and the IDF since 2001, he said.

Manning said the exercise is part of a routine training cycle designed to improve the interoperability of U.S. and Israeli defense systems. More than 2,500 US personnel ashore and afloat will participate in the exercise, he added.

“JC18 represents another step in the strategic relationship between the U.S. and Israel and contributes to regional stability,” he said.

In a news release on the exercise, Eucom officials described the exercise as a welcome opportunity for Eucom and the IDF to exercise together and learn from each other.

“The United States and Israel enjoy a strong and enduring military-to-military partnership built on a trust that has been developed over decades of cooperation,” said Air Force Lt. Gen. Richard M. Clark, the commander of 3rd Air Force at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, who is the commander for the deploying Joint Task Force Israel.

“The Juniper Cobra exercises continue to strengthen this relationship, providing us with the opportunity to bolster interoperability and develop seamless integration with our Israeli partners,” Clark said in the release.

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