Postcard from Iruma

NEWS Special

AFM contributor Rolf Flinzner was at Iruma Air Base in the city of Sayama, Saitama Prefecture, north of western Tokyo, when the Japan Air Self-Defense Force opened the station’s doors to the public as part of the Culture Day national holiday on November 3.

Two-seat F-2B 23-8111 (c/n 3011) is one of the 21 Hikotai jets stationed at the Air Training Command’s Matsushima AB, where they operate alongside the T-4s of the Blue Impulse display team. No fewer than 18 F-2Bs were originally declared beyond repair after the earthquake and tsunami that flooded Matsushima in March 2011. The Japan Defense Ministry subsequently contracted Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to rebuild 13 examples, which were redelivered to the JASDF between 2015 and 2018.

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