Australias RaptorsFriday, August 12, 20161310 hoursAirspace above the Taiwan Straits
A Republic of China Navy S-70 Seahawk helicopter took off from a coastal airbase on the Taiwans west coast,searching for survivors of a boating accident. Following a frantic distress call from the survivors, the helicopter flew flank speed toward the green smoke emitted by one of the survivors, wearing a lifejacket and holding thesmoke grenade.
At around the same time, a flight of six Lockheed Martin Boeing F-22A Raptors were airborne and now 160kilometers west of Taipei flying at 25000 feet at 600 kilometers an hour, having taken off from Kadena Air Basein Japan and refueled midflight as part of a Combat Air Patrol (CAP) mission over the Taiwan Straits, a knownflashpoint theater since 1949. The state-of-the-art stealth air superiority fighters were the epitome of 5thGeneration fighter aircraft. The Raptors were purchased from the United States by the Australian governmentas part of a $72 billion arms package for the Federal Republican Air Force of Australia (FRAFA), with 44 in theinventory and an additional 88 pending delivery.