Polish Pilots Take Controls on F-16

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Nov 9, 2005
Polish pilots training with the 162nd Fighter Wing of the Arizona Air National Guard in Tucson, Arizona have advanced to the point of flying F-16s on their own. Lt. Col. Rościsław Stepaniuk recently became the first Polish pilot to complete the seven-month course and become qualified in the F-16. Six more Polish pilots have just begun the training in Tucson. Colonel Carl Thomae, Director of Operations at the 162nd, stated that the Polish pilots had made "impressive progress." The pilots are confronted not only with the Polish/English language barrier, but an entirely new array of controls and systems in the cockpits of the ultra-modern F-16s. The pilots will be ready for action when the first of Poland's 48 new F-16s arrive in Poland next November.


Commander of Polish Air Force Meets with Polish Pilots Who Are Taking F-16 Training


Polish Pilot Returns from Training Mission in Arizona National Guard F-16
Poland was the first former Warsaw Pact country to apply for NATO membership too. During a NATO deployment I did a few years ago, we had a Polish exchange officer onboard. Nice guy.
And just can't imagine, that all MiGs and Sukhois will disappear from our skies :( MiGs-21 are already gone :(

I'm bigger fan of Russian planes than American, but we're in a new pact, so new equipment is needed.
evangilder said:
Pretty cool. Having been in the USAF during the cold war, it is still amazing to me that a former Warsaw Pact country is buying American technology.

What really was crazy was when the Wall fell and Germany reunified. All the Russian equipment that the East Germans had became West Germany's. It was really wiered to see Mig-29's and Hinds flying over Germany. It seems normal today, but was crazy back then.
It was the same in Poland. F16 and other NATO planes over Poland 10 years ago looked unreal.
Finally since WW.2, a large delegation of the Polish Air Force visited RAF Coltishall at 12 - 23 August 2004. As guest of the 41 Squadron (Jaguar Gr.4), 4 SU-22M-4 Fitter single seat and 1 SU-22UM twin seat fighters from the 7 Eskadra Lotnictwa Taktycznego (7 ELT) found their way to RAF Coltishall situated in the green fields of Norfolk. This situation was possible again after the Cold War faded away some years ago, Poland joining NATO afterwards and bringing their aircraft to NATO standard. Both countries are willing to strengthen relations again which were shamefully cut off after the ending of WW.2 when communism interfered. Its good to notice that this former WW.2 ally returns into the European community and gets rewarded by new attention for its role in WW.2 This issue will also be underlined during the the celebrations taking place around the 60 year remembrance of the Battle near Arnhem planned for 18 September where British and Polish fought side by side trying to conquer this important bridge in operation Market Garden.
Both SU-22 and Jaguar Gr.4 were born around the same episode, late 60's and early 70's, acting as single seat supersonic fighter attack aircraft. Being counterparts during the mentioned Cold War, both survived this cold episode of tension very well. Sadly the days of the Jaguar seem to be numbered right now after the release of new budget cut plans for the RAF. The Polish Air Force plans to maintain their Fitter fleet until 2010/12. Also both fighters are not very sophisticated but effective and reliable weapon platforms for low level tactical strike and recon misisons. Exports show this succes as well, the Fitter leading, being one of the most exported Sukhoi products ever.

evangilder said:
Yeah, I remember watching the wall come down on TV. I honestly never thought I would see that in my lifetime. Funny that this was brought up. I heard the Scorpions Magic of the Moment tonight too.

I was there when the Wall fell. I was hitting it with a hammer like most people and drinking champaign and the fire works were amazing. I will allways remember it.

the lancaster kicks ass said:
shouldda bought the Eurofighter

What are you talking about. Germany did buy the Eurofighter. Germany helped design, develop, and build it as well.

Germany has actually allready taken delivery of the Eurofighter and is fielding it in these squadrons:

Jagdgeschwader 71 "Richthofen"
Jagdgeschwader 73 "Steinhoff"
Jagdgeschwader 74
Jagdbombergeschwader 31 "Boelcke"
Jagdbombergeschwader 33 Cochem


Germany becomes first to take delivery of Eurofighter warplane
AFP ^ | 08/04/03 | AFP

Posted on 08/04/2003 6:32:00 PM PDT by Pikamax

Germany becomes first to take delivery of Eurofighter warplane HALLBERGMOOS, Germany, Aug 4 (AFP) - Germany has become the first country to take delivery of a Eurofighter warplane, product of an ambitious four-nation project to boost European military capabilities, Eurofighter announced on Monday. The Eurofighter Typhoon will be used for training purposes before the rest of Germany's total order of 180 aircraft is phased into operational use later in 2003 and over the next few years, the company, based near the southern city of Munich, said in a statement.

Deliveries to the air forces of the other countries involved in the project -- Britain, France and Italy -- will commence later this summer.

The Eurofighter is being made by a consortium that comprises Britain's BAE Systems, Germany's Daimler-Benz Aerospace (Dasa), Italy's Alenia and the Spanish group Casa.

The four consortium members have ordered 620 of the aircraft.

Britain has ordered 232 aircraft, Germany 180, Italy 121 and Spain 87. Each plane costs around 80 million euros (91 million dollars).

Last year Austria became the first nation outside the consortium to place an order, asking for 18. Greece has committed to 60 with an option for a further 30 aircraft.

The aircraft was officially licensed on June 30, certifying that the plane is airworthy and ready for use.

The single-seat plane is a multi-role, high-speed combat aircraft with a range of 2,500 kilometres (1,560 miles) and can be equipped with a mix of missiles depending on its mission.

Although planning for the aircraft began in 1977, financial worries caused repeated delays.



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