Like to discuss a hypothetical scenario
With the fall of berlin wall and collapse of communism in eastern Europe fully underway and the SOviet forces being withdrawn the Japanease nationalists consider this an ideal time to take back kuril Islands in a lightning campaign.Esp with the developing crisis in the middle east and US /France/Britain preoccupied with Saddam.
Using overflights by soviet recon aircrafts and presence of soviet navy vessels close to the territorial waters as a provocation the Japanese declare war on USSR and attack the Kurils.Using paratroops to compensate for lack of offensive naval /marines force and a blockade of the islands with the their 2 dozen DD/Frigates they isolate the Soviet garrison in the Kurils and subject it to constant air attacks using their 100 + F-15./F-4 fighter jets.
What options do the soviet commanders in the Far east have to respond ?
Does the Soviet Pacific fleet try to challenge the might of the Japanese navy ?
How do the 2 fleets compare ?
WHat kind of naval air battles will most likely occur ?
Soviets have a huge army but in a small campaign Japanese will not need conscription, they need only a few thousand troops to occupy these islands the real war will be at Sea and in the air
SO according to military balance 1990
it is approx.
34 DD/FF ( most Harpoon equipped)
12 ASROC equipped DD/FF
But no Aegis equipped kongo class in service and no aircraft carriers
72 F-4 phantoms
Soviet pacific fleet in 1990 have
they have approx.
25 DD/FF ( some ASW specialized albeit)
30 missile craft
150 naval bombers Tu-16/Tu-22 SSM equipped
In the pacific fleet plus 200 Mig-25/31 in the Far East with 250 Mig-23/Su-15 fighters
Do the Japanese in 1990 have air to air refulling ?
Precision guided munitions for their airforce ?
They do have Harppon antiship missiles, subsonic but lethal
100 + Orion ASW planes
The Harpoon outclasses the SSN-2 Styx carried by the soviet coastal craft like OSA boats and the SSN-7 carried by some soviet subs
The Orion ASW planes will pose a significant threat to soviet subs but will need F-15 escort all the time otherwise they will be vulnerable to soviet fighters
The soviets had practicised coordinated missile attacks against surface ships by missiles from surface ships /subs/naval bombers so in theory that will this be a headache for the Japanese navy in 1990 esp without the Kongo class aegis equipped ships and no aircraft carriers
The japanese subs will have to deal with significantly powerful ASW soviet ships of KAra, udaloy classes
Japanese fighters esp F-15 are superior although outnumbered.
Please leave aside assumptions like japan being a pacifist country will never be an aggressor , stranger things have happened in real history.
Please try to comment of the military options the Soviets or the Japanese have at that time and likely the tactics they would employ to try to defeat each others fleet .