Results of testing…
Interesting idea, but not viable against a good opponent.
UK re-taking of reinforcing Egypt throws a major monkey wrench in getting those aircraft to Europe. Best I could do in almost all cases was get them to Germany for use in J5 instead of J4. By that time, the volume of transports alone was so great that even without capital ships also in the UK sea zone, Japan would have probably have lost most of their aircraft on the first attack.
Also, the number of aircraft is wrong. If Russia strikes Manchuria on R1, then Japan loses a fighter. Although a Russia attack on Manchuria in R1 DOES make it easier for Japan to still move against Russia without air support.
However, if Russia consolidates in Yakut in R1, then the lack of air-power makes Yakut way too difficult for Japan to crack for SEVERAL rounds. Every test I ran showed that Russia holding Yakut and NOT going after Manchuria (or re-taking SFE) was a superior strategy for Russia. It kept Japan’s navy out of action against Russian forces. Any move by Russia to a coastal territory improved Japan’s ability to function without those fighters (actually, Russia does far better against Japan even if the fighters are kept for use against Russia’s eastern territories if Russia keeps their forces away from Japan’s navy.)
India is the stumbling block to this Japan strategy. If the Japan AF consolidates in Burma, UK abandones India and reinforces/re-takes Egypt. This takes away Japan’s transit LZ, trapping those fighters in Asia for additional rounds, and out of position for flexible use in potential Asian combat theaters like Yakut (they can reach Yakut, but the European transit is set back to square 1).
Lastly, on those occasions when those fighters were able to move into Africa to stage for the last flight to Europe, it left the US with a wide open Pacific to tear through. A couple of subs and tranny’s and US started to gobble up islands quickly. The remaining Japan capital ships (2 BB’s, a sub, and a carrier with no fighters) were destroyed engaging a VERY cheap US fleet; a fleet that was followed by a couple more tranny’s and subs that proceeded to take the Pacific AND Burma virtually un-opposed. Two subs in that fleet is all it took to break through the unguarded Japan tranny’s that were shifted to attempt to reinforce their soft positions in southern Asia.