For the first time, China sends military representation to the annual Cobra Gold exercise

South Korean soldiers jump off an amphibious assault vehicle during a Cobra Gold exercise on Hat Yao beach in Chonburi province, Thailand on Feb. 14.

South Korean soldiers jump off an amphibious assault vehicle during a Cobra Gold exercise on Hat Yao beach in Chonburi province, Thailand on Feb. 14.

Every year, Thailand hosts the largest multinational military drill in Asia Pacific called Cobra Gold; and every year, China, the largest military in the region next door, has refused to participate, until now. All major nations in the region including Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, and the United States are routine participants.

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