A flight of two U.S. B-52 bombers have reportedly entered the new Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) over East China Sea on Nov. 25 without informing Beijing, according to a U.S. official who spoke to the Wall Street Journal.
The two aircraft departed from Guam airbase and flew close to the disputed islands without complying with any of the rules set by Beijing for the new ADIZ over Diaoyu Islands (known as Senkaku islands in Japan).
The question is: did China’s air defense detect them? Did they try to intercept the two B-52s?
The two bombers, unarmed and not escorted by any fighter plane, were involved in a previous planned exercise dubbed “Coral Lightening”.
Even if the U.S. has already flown “extended deterrence” missions in the Asia-Pacific region in the past, this is an unprecedented direct challenge to China and its threats to Washington’s local allies.
Image credit: U.S. Air Force