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Concern over US withdrawal of F-15 jets from Okinawa

by Akhil Kadidal

The withdrawal from Okinawa of two USAF squadrons outfitted with F-15C Eagles has alarmed US Republican lawmakers who stated the transfer might embolden a militarily resurgent China. (US Air Force picture/Staff Sgt Kyle Johnson)

The withdrawal of two squadrons of US Air Force (USAF) Boeing F-15C fighter jets from Okinawa has prompted issues of a decline in US power functionality within the Indo-Pacific area.

The US Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) introduced the withdrawal in a press release on 28 October. “Starting in November [2022] the Department of Defense will commence a phased withdrawal of F-15 C/D aircraft forward-deployed to Kadena Air Base over the next two years,” the PACAF stated.

In their place, the US authorities has introduced a plan to deploy extra fashionable fight plane, albeit on a rotational foundation. US lawmakers stated on 1 November that the F-15C/Ds are “to be replaced initially by fifth-generation [Lockheed Martin] F-22 Raptors in six-month rotations from Alaska”.

The PACAF informed Janes that the transfer to retire the F-15 C/D Eagle fleet has been prompted by “an increasingly severe security environment” round Japan.

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