The US Navy is reportedly sending aircraft equipped with stealth technology to Japan as tensions increase between China and Japan.
The E-2D Advance Hawkeye airborne control aircraft will deploy to a Marine Corps station in Iwakuni in February.
The E-2D is equipped with the A/N-APY radar system, which has the power to see incredibly small targets in larger quantities than previous models. Defense journals have reported that the new radar can even detect stealth aircraft that are evading older radar systems.
A 2014 report in the US Naval Institute News stated that the A/N-APY technology equipped within the Hawkeyes could be the US Navy’s “secret weapon” against new stealth fighters and cruise missiles. Those would include China’s J-20 and J-31 fighters.
According to a US Navy statement, the deployment of the Advanced Hawkeyes is part of “a plan to put the most advanced and capable units forward in order to support the United States’ commitment to the defense of Japan and the security and stability of the region.”
Tensions have risen between Japan and China within the recent year due to China’s constant battle for the Senkaku Islands controlled by the Japanese.
Japan released a statement back in October stating that it had dispatched 407 warplanes throughout 2016 in reaction to increased Chinese military flights near Japanese controlled territory. That number almost doubles the number of warplanes launched in 2015.
Both nations are constantly attempting to produce better technology and enhanced military capabilities as tensions escalate. However, no actual fighting has occurred.
The US Advance Hawkeyes are being deployed to monitor the situation and keep the tension at bay for the time being. In addition to monitoring the situation, the US is also getting involved to keep up in the technology race between nations.
China has begun deploying their new J-20 stealth fighter planes to combat Japan’s military presence. There is not a significant amount of information regarding the specs of the J-20, but China is deploying these slick looking planes to showcase their brand new technology. China knew very well that these technology showcases would cause serious distrust between nations, but still continue to do so in an effort to showoff power.
Even as tensions continue to rise between both Japan and China, no violence is expected to occur as this is merely viewed, by the US at least, as a technology showcase. However, The US must address the frequent disputes between the two nations as a serious threat to national security.