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The multinational exercise Cope North, which kicked off Feb. 14 at Andersen AFB, Guam, includes a new humanitarian response element based on lessons learned from Operation Damayan in the Philippines.  More than 1,800 service members and 50 aircraft from the US Air Force, US Navy, Japan Air Self Defense Force, Royal Australian Air Force, and the Republic of Korea Air Forces are participating in the 85th iteration of exercise. Cope North 14 features a full spectrum of fighter and bomber aircraft, as well as transport, command and control, and refueling assets. In addition to combat drills, the US, JASDF, and RAAF will design and practice a disaster response scenario to increase interoperability in multi-national response settings. The combination of air-to-air, air-to-ground, and humanitarian scenarios makes the event unique for participants, PACAF officials said. “We live in a region with lots of natural disasters,” said Group Capt. Glen Beck, RAAF exercise director. “This is the largest international exercise we do and it’s definitely the largest footprint.” (PACAF release)