Military Aviation News Archive

Game Changer: The F-35 and the Pacific

04/25/2013

It is difficult to discuss the F-35 without actually knowing what the aircraft is and how F-35 fleets will reshape combat. But this is precisely what the budding negative commentary on the F-35 is built on – a lack of knowledge. Even worse, the existing 5th generation aircraft is not well known either, because of its limited numbers and its condemnation by Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and President Barack Obama as a “Cold War” weapon.

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Russian Plane Maker to Develop New Pilot Trainer

04/25/2013

The Nizhny Novgorod-based Sokol aircraft manufacturer said on Wednesday it will develop a light aircraft for training air force pilots. The order for the development of a new training aircraft came from Air Force commander Lt. Gen. Viktor Bondarev earlier this year. The new aircraft will be a modernized two-seat version of the M-101T Gzhel utility turboprop aircraft, the company said.

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Ex-General Gets Suspended Sentence for Crashing Fighter

04/25/2013

A former Russian Air Force general was given a four-year suspended sentence and fined 5 million rubles ($160,000) by a court-martial on Wednesday for causing the crash of a Sukhoi Su-27UB fighter jet last year in Russia’s Karelia region. The court-martial Judge Vladislav Pisaryov found Maj. Gen. Kanamat Botashev guilty of breaking flight rules by flying aerobatics in the jet without proper training and authorization.

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Pilot Killed in Kazakh MiG-31 Crash

04/25/2013

A Kazakhstan Air Force Mikoyan MiG-31 interceptor crashed during a training flight in central Kazakhstan last night, killing the pilot and injuring the navigator, Kazakhstan military prosecutors said on Wednesday. The crash occurred near the village of Prostornoye in the Karaganda Region at 10.45 p.m. local time (4.45 p.m. GMT) on Tuesday. “The crew ejected from the plane before the crash," the Military Prosecutor’s Office said in a statement.

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Northrop Grumman launches third annual Innovation Challenge Flying Competition for Emirati Students

04/25/2013

Northrop Grumman is the industry sponsor of this competition, which is held in coordination with the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT), Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments (ADASI) and the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI). The flying competition, which was open to the public as spectators, took place at the Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi, April 23-24.

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Saudi Tornados back in action after upgrades

04/25/2013

The upgrading of the Royal Saudi Air Force Tornados has been completed. The final aircraft being returned being photographed at Malta on its route back to the Kingdom. The BAE Systems end of year investor presentation confirmed that “Under the Saudi British Defence Co-operation Programme (SBDCP), orders totalling £3.4bn were awarded for support through to 2016, including the provision of manpower, logistics and training to the RSAF.

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Russian T-50 Fighter Jet to Start State Flight Test in 2014

04/24/2013

Russia will start state flight tests of its fifth-generation T-50 fighter jet in 2014, United Aircraft Corporation's President Mikhail Pogosyan told reporters on Tuesday. “In 2013 we are expected to wrap up its preliminary tests and start operational testing. In 2014, we are planning to start official state tests,” Pogosyan said on Tuesday, adding "the first stage of the state trials should be complete by 2015."

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Korean Crisis Reaching Face-To-Face Stage – Analysis

04/24/2013

North Korea’s deployment of two additional short-range scud ballistic missile launchers in its eastern coast has strengthened speculations in the South that Pyongyang might launch a missile on April 25, the anniversary of North Korean army. According to South Korean media, the latest deployment was in addition to the seven mobile missile launchers already in place on the coast.

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Defense Technologists Advocate ‘Early Prototyping’ of Future Weapons

04/24/2013

It took the Air Force about a quarter-century to bring the F-22 air-superiority fighter from the drawing board to reality. Most of the Pentagon’s major weapon systems have gone through similar protracted development. At this rate, it won’t be long before the U.S. military falls way behind the technology curve, lamented Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee’s subcommittee on emerging threats and capabilities.

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The U.S. and the Philippines: A Vital Partnership

04/24/2013

The armed forces of the United States and the Philippines conducted the 29th annual Balikatan joint military exercises April 5 through April 17. These military exercises are the largest and most significant joint military operations between the U.S. and Filipino militaries. The exercises are “a signature element” of the “two nations’ robust treaty alliance relationship.” The war games help the U.S. military and Filipino military operate more effectively together.

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AF TEST PILOT SCHOOL ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS

04/24/2013

The following information was released by Buckley Air Force Base: The next annual U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School Selection Board will convene June 23-26 at the Air Force Personnel Center. Applications will be accepted until 4 p.m. June 3. The USAF Test Pilot School is the world's pre-eminent fixed-wing test pilot school. TPS graduates are future senior leaders who will be in high demand in an era of increasing combat technological advancements.

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State of Unreadiness

04/24/2013

My colleague Timothy Whiteman at Liberty Unyielding highlighted recently the number of Air Force squadrons that will have to cease training later this year because the Air Force doesn’t have funds for the flying hours.This is real, and it is astounding. It will mean that, at a certain point in the near future, as early as this fall, if no additional funds become available, the cost of mounting an operation big enough to eliminate Iran’s nuclear weapons-related installations is likely too high.

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Banner shoot prepares pilots for combat

04/24/2013

F-22 pilots from the 302nd, 525th and 90th fighter squadrons tested their aim during a banner shoot, April 22 to 25. Banner shoots are a way for pilots to be comfortable in air-to-air combat. Pilots demonstrate the effectiveness of doing exercises like these by practicing their aim in the air. "A banner shoot is a system that we use to increase pilot proficiency," said Air Force Master Sgt. Richie Bill, weapons section chief from the 90th Fighter Squadron.

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UN Treaty Could Hurt Indian Arms Deals

04/24/2013

The United Nations Arms Trade Treaty adopted April 3 has sent shockwaves through India’s Defence Ministry as several ongoing projects could be affected. While no MoD official would comment on whether the treaty could impact weapon imports, an MoD source said planners are extremely concerned over the fate of some ongoing contracts and future purchases.

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Kerry Tells NATO to Prepare for Syrian Chemical Weapons

04/24/2013

US Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday called on the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to prepare for the possible use of chemical weapons by Syria in the ongoing civil war there. "We should also carefully and collectively consider how NATO is prepared to respond to protect its members from a Syrian threat, including any potential chemical weapons threat," Kerry told a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Brussels.

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Russia to Deploy Fighter Jets in Belarus - Defense Minister

04/24/2013

Russia plans to base fighter jets at a military airbase in Belarus, with a first wing due to arrive there later this year, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Tuesday. “In 2013 we will establish a military commandant’s office and provide a wing of combat fighters on alert duty,” he said, adding more jets could be based there later. “We hope that an Air Force regiment will be here by 2015 to protect our borders,” he said.

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U.S. Aircraft Sale Upholds Israel Military Edge: Hagel

04/23/2013

The U.S. plans to provide Israel with advanced weapons, including the first export of the tilt- rotor V-22 Osprey, as part of an “iron-clad pledge” to ensure its edge against enemies such as Syria and Iran, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said. “We’re committed to providing Israel with whatever support is necessary for Israel to maintain military superiority over any state or coalition of states and non-state actors,” Hagel said after meeting today with Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon in Te

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The DF-21D or “Carrier Killer”: An Instrument of Deception?

04/23/2013

There’s no doubt that China’s Dong Feng 21D (DF-21D) anti-ship ballistic missile (ASBM) is, in theory, a formidable anti-access weapon. Since its alleged deployment circa 2010, many defense analysts have argued that the so-called “carrier killer” would be a game changer in any armed conflict in Northeast Asia and prevent the participation of U.S. carrier groups in regional contingencies, such as war in the Taiwan Strait.

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China-India border talks pivot on Tibet

04/23/2013

Throughout the protracted Sino-Indian border dispute, Tibet and its status has always been a predominant influence, whether implicitly or explicitly on the negotiating table. This has both historical and contemporary ramifications. India, much to China's chagrin, utilized the Tibet issue as a key point of departure in order to strike a grand bargain with Beijing after China occupied Tibet in 1949.

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More Raytheon decoy-jammer systems for U.S. Air Force

04/23/2013

Raytheon is producing more miniature air launched decoy-jammers for the U.S. Air Force under exercise of a contract option. A total of 202 MALD jammers, with containers, will be produced and delivered. The value of the firm fixed-price Air Force contract is $81.7 million. A 10-year warranty is included in the deal.

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Yuma is home base for key Marine Corps tactics course

04/23/2013

Known simply by the Marines who have attended it over the years as WTI, which stands for Weapons and Tactics Instructor course, it is also the only training of its kind, providing pilots, weapon system operators, ground combat and combat support service personnel a world-class opportunity to hone their battlefield knowledge and expertise.

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Necessary Spending

04/23/2013

This year’s defense budget is coming into focus, and the picture isn’t pretty. Congress and the president will probably agree to increase defense spending by a small amount, but they will probably also take money away from future defense budgets. This will allow them to say that they have increased defense spending while in reality the wholesale unraveling of American power will continue.

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Partner in the Pivot?

04/23/2013

Apathy kills. The Obama administration’s pivot to Asia—a politico-military endeavor that combines strategic mass, strategic maneuver, and geography in intensely competitive surroundings—may well bolster Taiwan’s security vis-à-vis the mainland.Yet the pivot’s capacity to dissuade or defeat China hinges on whether U.S. Navy relief forces can reach the island’s vicinity, do battle, and prevail at a cost acceptable to the American state and society.

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Taliban seize Turks and Russians from downed helicopter

04/23/2013

Officials said there were seven Turks and two Russians on board. The insurgent militia, which frequently makes exaggerated statements, claimed 11 US military personnel were on the aircraft which came down on Sunday in bad weather in Logar province, just south of Kabul. The US-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said no foreign military were involved and the helicopter was a civilian one. It said it had no information on the fate of the aircraft or its occupants.

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New aircraft deal crucial for IAF: Browne

04/23/2013

The Indian Air Force (IAF) chief NAK Browne on Monday indicated that the medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) deal, pertaining to acquisition of 126 aircraft at a cost of around Rs 45,000 crore, was crucial in the wake of the fact that the Mig-21 aircraft were being phased out. The phasing out of all the four variants of these aircraft will be over by 2019-20.

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