Some more recent developments as reported over this past week-end[quote]Japan to station advanced fighters on Okinawa
BULKING UP: The move to put 24 advanced F-15J fighters on the island would give a significant boost to Japan’s ability to respond to a crisis in the Taiwan Strait
By Mac William Bishop, STAFF REPORTER , WITH REUTERS
Sunday, May 29, 2005,Page 1
Japan will deploy several of its most advanced fighter aircraft to Okinawa in response to the increasing military threat from China, a newspaper said yesterday, while a Japanese official confirmed the plans.
The deployment of two dozen F-15J Eagle fighters to Japan’s southernmost prefecture – which at its nearest point is only 180km away from Taiwan – will be completed by the end of 2009, the Japanese-language daily Sankei Shimbun reported yesterday. The presence of F-15Js on Okinawa would significantly increase Japanese military capabilities in the Taiwan Strait.
Currently, the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF), Japan’s air force, maintains 24 F-4EJ Phantom fighters in the 302nd Fighter Squadron, 83rd Air Wing at a base in Naha City, the prefectural capital. The base is located next to Naha International Airport.
A Japanese defense official, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the deployment plans. He acknowledged that the situation in the Taiwan Strait “concerned” Tokyo, but had no comment on whether the move was meant to send a signal to Beijing.
Tokyo has recently begun to take an increasingly hard-line approach toward China regarding the Taiwan Strait. In February, the US and Japan for the first time publicly dubbed the Taiwan Strait an area of “mutual concern.”
Hawks in Japan’s ruling party, the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), have been even more blunt.
“It would be wrong for us to send a signal to China that the US and Japan will watch and tolerate a Chinese military invasion of Taiwan,” LDP Secretary-General Shinzo Abe said in February.
Also, in its “2005 National Defense Program Guideline,” the Japanese Cabinet said "a number of countries are pouring in efforts to modernize their military forces. The situation on the Korean Peninsula is unpredictable and cross-Taiwan Strait relations remain uncertain."b[/b]
taipeitimes.com/News/front/a … 2003257037[/quote]
[quote]Coast guard forces Chinese ship away
INTRUSION: A Chinese research vessel, which the president said was probably used to gather intelligence, was forced to leave Taiwanese waters by patrol boats
By Rich Chang, STAFF REPORTER
Sunday, May 29, 2005,Page 1
The coast guard forced a Chinese research ship, the Fen Dou No.4 (奮鬥四號) to leave Taiwanese waters yesterday morning, after the vessel intruded into Taiwan’s territory twice in seven days.
“Chinese research vessels have recently infringed on the boundaries of Taiwan’s exclusive economic maritime zone under the guise of oceanic surveys, but they may be trying to acquire military intelligence,” President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) said yesterday, as he watched an anti-terrorism drill conducted by the Coast Guard Administration (CGA) in Kaohsiung.
“The intrusions not only violate the law, but they also have a bad influence on cross-strait ties,” Chen said.
Chen said he had asked the CGA to strengthen aerial and maritime patrols in Taiwan’s territory.
CGA Minister Shi Hwei-yow (許惠祐) yesterday said the Fan Dou No.4 was forced out of the waters south of Taiwan yesterday morning, and that two CGA vessels were stationed near the periphery of Taiwan’s maritime zone to prevent the vessel’s return.
He said “this is the third time this month that Chinese vessels have entered Taiwan’s territory. The recent frequent intrusions of Chinese research ships were seen as unfriendly actions.”
He added “the semi-official Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) had three times requested Chinese authorities recall the Fan Dou No.4, but it still stayed and refused to leave.”
The CGA discovered the Fen Dou No. 4 some 175km southwest of Kaohsiung on the morning of May 22. A CGA vessel and aircraft closed in on the ship to force its departure, but the vessel refused to move.
The CGA said another three Coast Guard vessels arrived at the spot on May 23 in an effort to force the ship to leave, and the ship stopped its operations and left on May 24.
The CGA said, however, that the vessel returned to the waters south of Taiwan on May 26 and conducted operations there.
The vessel was again forced to leave by the Coast Guard yesterday morning, Shi said.b[/b]
taipeitimes.com/News/front/a … 2003257033[/quote]
Although this last bit happens quite regularly. Sonar sounding for ‘oil explorations’ is also how ocen floor is mapped. Good info for subamarines to have.