F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets on the deck of the USS Ronald Reagan in the South China Sea in 2018. Photo: AP

What is the US Navy doing on Japan’s Iwo Jima, nearly 75 years after World War II?

  • While the island – where a key battle took place in 1945 – is sovereign Japanese territory, it is also a strategic facility for US and Japanese troops
  • For 20 years, US fighter pilots have used it to practise the high-pressure manoeuvre of taking off and landing on aircraft carriers
Topic |   Japan

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F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets on the deck of the USS Ronald Reagan in the South China Sea in 2018. Photo: AP
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Julian Ryall

Julian Ryall

Julian Ryall never expected to still be in Japan 24 years after he first arrived, but he quickly realised its advantages over his native London. He lives in Yokohama with his wife and children and writes for publications around the world.