Thursday, 25 September 2014


Protecting Japan’s Southern Approaches

JASDF 204th Tactical Fighter Squadron (TFS)

The JASDF 83rd Air Wing’s 204TFS are home based at Naha Airbase (Okinawa) equipped with the F-15J Strike Eagle fighter. Their mission is to protect the southern flanks of Japan, the Ryukyu Islands chain and the surrounding Territorial waters and shipping lanes.
Prior to 204 Sqn F-15J Eagles taking up the mantle at Naha, the latter fighter replaced the Lockheed F-104J’s (Mitsubishi built under licence), then Japan’s air superiority fighter, of 207Sqn and later the F-4EJ Phantom’s (also Mitsubishi built under licence) of 302 Sqn who were transferred after 204’s arrival at Naha.

predecessors of the F-15J at Naha was the F-104J Starfighter of 207Sqn (pictured)

the F-4EJ Phantom II of 203 Sqn (pictured) both preserved at the base

The routine nature of 204’s Squadron’s operational sorties took an upturn during 2013, when China vocally and physically upgraded its claim to a number of islands some 410kms southwest of Okinawa which are owned by Japan and known as Senkaku (China refers to them as Diaoyu).  Tension increased after several occasion’s where 204’s Eagles encountered PLAAF (Chinese Air Force) aircraft in the disputed area. 
F-15J turns outward under the watchful eye of ground team

F-15J up close and personal

testing airbrake rolling out

a pair of F-15J's get up and go
The status-quo heightened further when China later imposed an ADIZ over the disputed area (unrecognised by Japan). Not surprisingly, 204’s missions have increased dramatically, now with ‘Hot’ capability. Fortunately so far it has been a case of ‘look see’ scenarios.

six F-15J's in formation fly down the runway

The 83rd Air Wing is part of the South Western Composite Air Division, and the 204th host the Command’s Support Flight equipped with the Kawasaki T-4, a number of which are based at Naha and used in the training regime.

line up of T-4's, nearest trio are 204TFS

a duo of 204's T- 4's get the gear up

These images of 204TFS F-15J’s and T-4’s were taken on the flightline at Naha Airbase.

Thanks to GAFLIKS for providing this report.

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Tuesday, 16 September 2014

P-3 Navy YB 764

VVYB764 wrkg SFO F220 PHNL-PGUA track, SEL/GRBE ties to 161764.

161764 P-3.