The U.S. government has aid it is “positively inclined” to selling 100 F-22 fighter jets to Japan. It would be the first overseas sale of the state-of-the-art stealth fighter /The F-22 Raptor is a fighter jet capable of incapacitating entire air forces of other countries. It has radar-evading stealth technology and its range of surveillance is vastly wider than that of other fighter jets. It boasts radically improved maneuverability. Its effectiveness in aerial combat is guaranteed by the fact that it can see others, while being invisible to others. In mock battles with F-15, F-16 and F-18 fighter jets, the F-22 won 144 dogfights and lost none. The South Korean Air Force, composed mainly of F-15 and F-16 fighters, would be powerless in front of the Japanese Air Self Defense Force equipped with /South Korea is in a double bind: a nuclear and biological missile threat from North Korea and being trapped between a fierce armament race between China and Japan. China surprised the world by shooting down a satellite with its own missile and increasing its fleet of nuclear submarines. A decade later, China is about to launch its own fleet of aircraft /Japan will not sit by idly as China arms itself. The U.S. is seeking to counter China by aggressively supporting Japan’s missile defense systems and by boosting the country’s air force and naval capabilities. And Washington’s gift, coinciding with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit, is 100 F-22 fighter /The U.S. cited North Korea’s nuclear missile threat and China’s modernizing air force as reasons for selling the F-22s to Japan. And Washington did that without even glancing at South Korea, which is more directly exposed to such a threat. In order to facilitate the sale of F-22 fighter jets to Japan, the U.S. is ready to change its law banning overseas sales of the planes until 2015. But Washington has yet to give South Korea a definitive answer regarding the sale of Global Hawk unmanned surveillance aircraft. Meanwhile, the U.S. and Japan are forming a Pacific security triangle with Australia, which is filling a place once held by South /South Korea’s Ministry of National Defense says it will reexamine its air force reinforcement plans, which were centered around F-15K fighter jets. But there is no way of knowing whether the United States would sell the F-22 to South Korea. And even if it does, South Korea will find it hard to purchase the F-22, which costs up to US$300 million apiece, or double the price of an F-15K. With GDP growth only in the four percent range, South Korea is facing a tough time looking for ways to protect itself in Northeast Asia, where it is stuck between North Korea, which is unwilling to give up its nuclear program, and China and Japan, which are about to embark on an armament /br /Source:

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