F-22s set for first overseas deployment

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About one dozen F-22 Raptors and more than 250 pilots, mechanics, and other 27th Fighter Squadron Airmen from Langley Air Force Base, Va. will head to Kadena Air Base, Japan, in February to fill the squadron's air and space expeditionary force requirement.

"The F-22 Raptor deployment is founded upon and is built upon a constant rotation of combat aircraft into the Japan and East-Asia pacific theater and the motives are multifaceted," said Lt. Gen. Bruce Wright, commander of United States Forces Japan and 5th Air Forces. "This deployment has been planned for some time now."

General Wright said the deployment is a part of scheduled rotations in and out of the Pacific region and is not in response to any direct threat or nation.

This marks the first overseas deployment for the Air Force's newest stealth fighter jet but not the first time the F-22 has flown in the pacific. In June 2006, F-22s participated in Exercise Northern Edge at Elemendorf AFB, Alaska.