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​US Strategic Command kicked off Global Thunder on Monday—an annual exercise intended to train its forces and assess joint operational readiness across all assigned mission areas. Headquarters staff, components, and task forces will participate in the command post and field training exercise, which will focus on cyber, space, missile defense, and nuclear readiness, according to a release. “Testing our forces through a range of challenging scenarios validates the safety, security, effectiveness and readiness of the strategic deterrent we provide the nation,” said STRATCOM chief Adm. Cecil Haney, according to the release. He said the scenarios presented during the exercise will help create the solutions needed to maintain deterrence in the future. (See also: Drilling to Avert Doomsday.)