On June 15, 40 media personnel were invited to view first-hand an air drop onboard a C-17 Globemaster flying over Penor, Pahang before continuing the journey to the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) base in Butterworth, Penang. It is part of the Cope Taufan and Teak Mint Exercise being held simultaneously from June 9-20. The exercise was led by Lt. General Russell J. Handy, commander of the 11th Air Force, Pacific Air Forces (PACAF). Other participants included RMAF chief director of exercise and air operations, Major-General Datuk Seri Affendi Buang. It is also the first time that the newest U.S. Air Force fighter, the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, has participated in an exercise in Southeast Asia.
Cope Taufan is designed to improve U.S. and Malaysian combined readiness and interoperability. The two week exercise’s aim is to improve readiness and cooperation between the U.S. and Malaysia forces, enhance the combat capability between the two nations by providing realistic live-fly training opportunities, and promote regional peace and stability.