The wreckage remains of a Japanese F-35 fighter jet which disappeared during a night training flight had been found in the sea in the early hours of Wednesday. The wreckage was found by a search party team, who had been prowling around for it since Tuesday, 9th April 2019. The fighter jet disappeared barely 30 minutes after taking off from the Misawa airbase alongside three other F-35A fighting jets. It was last seen on radar while flying off the eastern coast of Aomori. Till the time of filing this report, the pilot who is in his 40s has not been found.
Japan’s Defence Minister, Takeshi Iwaya disclosed that the cause of the crash is still unknown and the other F-35s will be grounded till further notice. In his words, “We have collected parts from the jet fighter’s tail fin so we [believe] it crashed,”.
The search for the missing fighter jet and its pilot was supported by the United States’ military, and till this moment, the United States Navy’s 7th fleet, P-8A maritime patrol aircraft and a guided missile destroyer are still part of the Japanese-led search and rescue team for the unfound pilot.
There was urgency in finding the crashed fighter jet as it could spark a significant security concern if discovered by the Russians or Chinese. It should be recalled that the two countries have been all out to lay their hands on the first class military technology developed by the United States.