NATO allies train integration of 4th and 5th generation jets in the Baltic States

Polish F-16s based in Lithuania and Dutch F-35s and American F-15s currently deployed in Poland conducted 4th to 5th-generation integration training against an intricate scenario based on peer threats.

Supported by air-to-air tankers, the fighters practiced tactics, techniques, and procedures designed to defeat a complex set of potential real-world problems in a contested air domain.

Estonian Armed Forces Joint Tactical Attack Controllers supported the aircraft by providing live target information during the mission and enhancing air-ground cooperation.

“This activity offers a unique opportunity for the Royal Netherlands Air Force F-35s to train and integrate with Allied fighters, working together in a complex and dynamic environment,” said Lieutenant Colonel Guido “Plebs” Schols, F-Detachment Commander 35 of RNLAF, Poland. “Leveraging the full potential of our new 5th generation systems alongside existing 4th generation assets is critical to NATO’s robust ability to meet emerging and evolving strategic challenges.”

The activity complies with international law and standards as part of a regular and repeated surveillance program designed to protect the eastern flank and secure NATO Allies in the region.

Eight Dutch F-35 fighters are deployed in Malbork, Poland, joining the NATO mission to reinforce the defensive posture along the eastern flank in February and March 2023.

While four of the fifth-generation fighters will be deployed in support of policing the skies in the region, the other four aircraft will be available to carry out this type of training mission with the Allies or will be ready to augment the defensive mission when necessary.


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