Military Aviation News Archive

The sun rises again: Japan shows off the awesome might of its re-emerging naval power with new colossal helicopter carrier - its biggest warship since WWII

03/26/2015

Japan's navy today took delivery of its biggest warship since the Second World War as it continues expanding its military capability in an attempt to shed its post-war pacifism. Today the Izumo, a helicopter carrier as big as the Imperial Navy aircraft carriers that battled the United States in the Pacific, was delivered to the navy in a crowning achievement for the nation's military forces.

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General Defends Embattled $850 Billion F-35 Program

03/26/2015

The man in charge of the Pentagon’s $391 billion F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is sick of the intense criticism his embattled program has received over the past few years. He says the aircraft is in much better shape than the public has been led to believe. For years, the F-35 has raised eyebrows for its enormous cost overruns, schedule delays and significant technical and design problems.

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Dassault hands over two upgraded Mirages to India, eyes Rafale

03/26/2015

Even as the government on Wednesday announced the dates of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to France on April 9, 2015, Dassault handed over two upgraded Mirage 2000 fighter aircraft to the Indian Air Force in a formal ceremony at the Dassault Aviation Flight Test Centre in France. Mr. Modi will also travel to Germany on April 12, 2015 and Canada on April 14, 2015 before returning on April 17, 2015.

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Nicaragua’s interest in Russian fighter jets could trigger the stupidest arms race ever

03/26/2015

Nicaragua’s sudden interest in purchasing a squadron of MiG-29 fighter jets from Russia could trigger a pointless arms race between one of the smallest and one of the largest militaries in Latin America.

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Airbus Sells Additional Stake in Dassault Aviation

03/26/2015

Airbus Group NV said it sold additional shares in Dassault Aviation SA, cutting its holding in the maker of the Rafale fighter to 24.6 percent and using the proceeds to fund growth. Airbus said it sold 1.61 million shares in total, with 71 percent of the lot going to institutional investors for 1,030 euros a share and the remainder to Dassault for 980 euros apiece, according to a statement today. The transaction corresponds to 1.64 billion euros ($1.8 billion), Airbus said.

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Falklands defence: Why is Argentina considering an aircraft deal with the Russians?

03/26/2015

Russia's reported plans to lease 12 fighter aircraft to Argentina is forcing Britain to "beef up" it's defence of the Falklands, the Defence Secretary has said. The Sukhoi Su-24 aircraft would be sent to Buenos Aires in exchange for beef and wheat, in a proposal which would help Moscow beat EU sanctions over Ukraine. Michael Fallon said that while any agreement between Russia and Argentina was not yet signed, Britain would increase its presence on the archipelago.

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Sweden, NATO Report Russian Military Planes Over Baltic Sea

03/26/2015

The Swedish Air Force and NATO jets on Tuesday tracked four Russian combat aircraft flying with their transponders turned off over the Baltic Sea, officials said. The Russian planes — two long-range, nuclear-capable Tu-22M3 bombers and two Sukhoi Su-27 fighters — were flying in international airspace, according to Sweden's Armed Forces and alliance sources.

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Saudi Arabia Readies for Possible Intervention in Yemen on Thursday

03/26/2015

Saudi Arabia amassed heavy military equipment and artillery near its border with Yemen, showing signs of an impending military intervention. A formal go-ahead for the invasion might be given on Thursday by the Arab League. As the conflict in Yemen escalates, US officials are saying that Saudi Arabia may be preparing airstrikes to defend Yemen’s embattled President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi against advancing Houthi rebels, as it starts moving weapons to areas near its neighboring country’s border.

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Russian Military to Get 100 Brand New Su-34 Frontline Bombers

03/26/2015

"This year the [Novosibirsk] aircraft factory must deliver 16 Su-34 frontline bombers," Mikhailov said, adding the factory is ready to exceed the production target. "Three aircraft will be delivered soon," said the director of the Moscow-based United Aircraft Corporation's Military Aviation Programs Directorate. Mikhailov described the aircraft as solid, sound and able to cover long distances with refueling. "In other words, it meets all the requirements for the frontline bomber," he said.

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US Starts Bombing ISIL-Held Tikrit After Iraqi Assault Stalls

03/26/2015

A US official says the airstrikes began after the Iraqi government requested US help. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the American attacks had not yet been officially announced. An Associated Press reporter in Tikrit reported hearing warplanes overhead late Wednesday, followed by multiple explosions.

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Dozens injured when RAF plane nose-dives 4,400ft

03/24/2015

Dozens of military personnel were injured when an RAF transport plane on its way to Afghanistan nose-dived 4,400ft after the captain's camera became lodged alongside the aircraft's joystick. The Voyager jet was around five hours into its journey from Brize Norton to Camp Bastion when the Nikon camera, used by the captain to take photographs on board, got stuck between the arm rest and the side-stick controller when his seat moved forward.

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F-35B tests to set stage for combat readiness

03/24/2015

The next step in getting the new Marine Corps F-35B ready for combat roles is scheduled for May off the East Coast. The Marine Corps will run its new F-35B Lightning II through weapons tests in sea trials during a two-week period, according to Maj. Paul Greenberg, of the Office of U.S. Marine Corps Communication. He said what is called Operational Test Period 1 is scheduled aboard the USS Wasp.

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USAF releases T-X requirements

03/24/2015

The US Air Force (USAF) on 20 March released requirements for its Northrop T-38C Talon combat aircraft trainer replacement programme, known as T-X. USAF Secretary Deborah Lee James, the service's senior civilian official, has emphasised open discussions with potential T-X manufacturers to keep the effort affordable.

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The battle to kill the A-10

03/24/2015

The Air Force is on the attack to eliminate the beloved A-10, insisting that the venerable Warthog is not the only airframe up to the close-air support task. To press the point, service leaders showcased a group of fighter pilots, who described their CAS missions in other aircraft. But opponents on Capitol Hill, and troops on the ground, aren't having it, and the service faces an uphill battle to cut the jet and bring its beleaguered F-35 online in time.

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Russia’s return to Nicaragua worries many in Central America

03/24/2015

Russia is rekindling its once-strong ties to Nicaragua, possibly including providing the Central American nation with jet fighters, stoking unease as far away as the Andes in South America. Later this week, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will arrive in Nicaragua as part of a swing through four Latin American nations, the culmination to a series of high-level Russian visits to this Central American nation in the past year.

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US, Coalition Forces Conduct 14 Airstrikes Against ISIL - Central Command

03/24/2015

The United States-led coalition against the Islamic State conducted 14 airstrikes in Syria and Iraq, resulting in the destruction of tactical units, fighting positions, vehicles and machinery, the US Central Command said in a statement. “On March 22, Coalition military forces continued to attack ISIL terrorists in Syria, using fighter and bomber aircraft to conduct eight airstrikes,” the statement, released on Monday, said.

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US Approves Sale of 17 Chinook Cargo Helicopters to Netherlands

03/24/2015

The Chinook sale will enhance the defense of The Netherlands and support NATO cooperation, according to the DSCA. The 17 Chinooks will supplement existing Chinook helicopters and eventually replace the Netherlands’ aging Chinook fleet.

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Russia to Begin Serial Production of 5th Generation T-50 Fighters in 2016

03/24/2015

Russia plans to start production of fifth-generation T-50 fighter jets in 2016, Russian Deputy Defense Minister Yuri Borisov said Monday. As of now, the United States is the only country whose Air Force includes a fully-operational fifth-generation jet fighter. “We have plans to deliver the first series of fifth-generation fighter jets next year,” Borisov said during a visit to the Komsomolsk-on-Amur aviation plant in the country’s Far East, where Russia is developing the PAK-FA fighter jet.

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Finland Free to Decide on Its NATO Membership

03/24/2015

Finland’s Defense Minister Carl Haglund met his Swedish and British counterparts on board a US aircraft carrier Sunday in a sign of growing military cooperation between Helsinki and NATO.

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China Becomes the World`s Third Biggest Arms Exporter

03/23/2015

In just 5 years, beginning with 2010, China` arms sales have grown 143 per cent. That is how China has become the world`s thrid largest exporter in weapon commerce, overtaking the position which was by now occupied by Germany. However, the new study that shows these numbers also reveals the fact that 5 per cent share is still poor when compared to United States` and Russia`s combined 58 per cent. As international conflicts continue to emerge around the world,

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Tikrit assault stalls as Obama withholds airstrikes to avoid Iran ties, analysts say

03/23/2015

The lack of U.S. airstrikes in and around the city of Tikrit is slowing the Iraqi counteroffensive to retake the strategically situated city from the Islamic State’s terrorist army. The assault, carried out by the Iraqi Security Forces and Shiite militiamen trained, equipped and led by Iran, has encircled the Sunni-dominated city north of Baghdad after more than three weeks of fighting. The Pentagon now says the battle is “static.”

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A-10 Warthog Is Out, F-15 and F-16 Are In, Says the Air Force

03/23/2015

The U.S. Air Force wants to kill the A-10 Warthog. Really, really wants to kill it. But some of the Air Force's ideas for replacing the A-10 are starting to strain credibility. As you're probably aware, the Air Force has argued multiple times in recent months that its new F-35 stealth fighters (built by Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT)) can do an "adequate" job of providing ground troops with close-air support.

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NATO General: West Should Consider Arming Ukraine

03/23/2015

NATO's military commander is again calling on the West to consider sending defensive weapons to Ukraine, to help it offset Russia's continued support for the pro-Russian rebellion in Ukraine's east. U.S. Air Force General Philip Breedlove, speaking Sunday, told a Brussels conference that he does not think "any tool of (the) United States or any other nation's power should necessarily be off the table."

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Amid stalled fighter projects, upgraded Mirage cheers IAF

03/23/2015

Faced with huge delays in clinching new fighter projects even as it grapples with fast-eroding air combat power, IAF finally has some reason to cheer. The force will get its first two upgraded Mirage-2000 fighters with new avionics and weapons this week. The defence ministry says France will hand over the two "almost new" Mirage fighters to the project management teams of IAF and Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) on March 25.

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Syria helicopter crashes in rebel-held Idlib

03/22/2015

The helicopter went down in Jabal al-Zawiya in Idlib province, an area held by opposition fighters, including those from al-Nusra Front, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported. Four crew members were captured, while a fifth was killed, the watchdog said.

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