KUNSAN AB, 26, SOUTH KOREA
Story by Senior Airman Shannon Braaten
8th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
KUNSAN AB, Republic of Korea – U.S. Air Force and Republic of Korea Air Force service members participated in an immersive experience event at the O’Malley dining facility at Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 28, 2022.
The immersion paired ROKAF and U.S. service members to prepare, cook and share a meal together while providing an opportunity to learn from their counterparts and improve interoperability between our allied partners.
“Once COVID subsided a little bit, we wanted to get back into immersing ourselves in their culture and them into ours,” said Master Sgt. Alexis Cabell, 8th Force Support Squadron military personnel flight chief. “With events such as this, we get to share ideas. We get to show them what our processes are like and in-turn they will be able to show us what their processes are like. It really helps to build our alliance together.”
The ultimate goal of these immersion activities is to integrate U.S. and ROKAF team members. Maintaining continuity as a combined force is vital to strengthen joint capabilities at Kunsan, said Master Sgt. Sung Kim, 8th Maintenance Squadron armament maintenance section chief.
“Both sides are more comfortable interacting with each other and it improves the interoperability of our alliances with our counterparts,” added Kim “This is kind of like the stepping stone for bigger immersions or training events.”
This immersion event marked the first in a series of projected immersions throughout the year. Immersion events are expected to grow in frequency and may incorporate a variety of different occupations.
“The intent is to have something as often as possible to really dive in headfirst and immerse ourselves with their culture and ours,” Kim said.
The U.S. military and its allied partners are integral to the safety and security of the Indo-Pacific region, with events like immersions playing a vital role in maintaining friendship and alliances.
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