The United States military on Sunday lost an F-16 fighter jet after its pilot crashed into the Pacific Ocean just off the coast of northeastern Japan. The pilot was eventually rescued thanks to a six-hour search effort by Japan’s Coast Guard.
The pilot was eventually transported to a U.S. container ship at approximately 6 p.m. The pilots and his F-16 Fighter Falcon had went down approximately 200 miles northeast of Hokkaido, the northernmost island of Japan.
It is not clear what caused the crash at this time but the U.S. Air Force said it is preparing to release a statement about the pilot’s rescue. The Air Force pilot had taken off from Misawa Air Base in Aomori at 11:30 and was headed towards North America when the crash occurred.
The crash couldn’t come at a worse time for the U.S. military which is engaged in a heated debate over the implementation of a military hybrid helicopter-plane which has its own history of safety problems in Japan. That aircraft known as the MV-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft will arrive at the U.S. Marines’ Iwakuni Air Station on Monday. The MV-22 Osprey has recently witnessed crosses in both Florida and Morocco.
It should be noted that the MV-22 Osprey and the F-16 fighter jets are vastly different pieces of military equipment.
Japan is attempting to acquire U.S. planes in an attempt to retire its aging fleet of fighter jets.
In the meantime Iraq is still attempting to buy dozens of F-16 fighter jets from the United States in an attempt to beef up its own defense strategy.