How the Soviets picked up a Sidewinder for under $80

And Deutsche Bundespost almost lost it…

The full story: War is Boring

That the Soviet-made R-3S air-to-air missile — better known in the West by its NATO-designation AA-2 Atoll — is a copy of the AIM-9B Sidewinder, originally developed and manufactured in the USA, is relatively well-known.

How it came to be … isn’t so well-known. It involved the mail.

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Air transportation services were making mistakes back then at least as often as they make them nowadays, and thus Ramminger’s parcel first traveled from Frankfurt via Paris to Copenhagen, then back to Düsseldorf, before finally reaching Moscow – 10 days late.

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Not so bonza Ghostrider, the pattern is full

The Australian counterparts to Maverick and Iceman.  Or would that be Icebloke?

Source: Melbourne hawks in review

Here we see a pair of McDonnell Douglas A4G Skyhawks of the Royal Australian Navy Fleet Air Arm 805 Squadron (VF-805) coming in low and hot over the RAN’s only operable aircraft carrier of the time, HMAS Melbourne (R21) sometime in the 1970s.

While the RAN FAA traces its lineage back to the Great War, it was only after WWII that it was able to stand up fixed-wing carrier squadrons, flying Hawker Sea Fury’s in Korea. After a brief interlude in Sea Venoms, 805 Squadron picked up their Seahawks in 1968.

The two ‘Hawks shown above were part of 21 A-4s operated by the RAN between 1967-84 with #887 eventually transferring to New Zealand from where she was sold in 2012 to Draken International (where she still flies as a contract aggressor in Florida). As for #888, she crashed in 1979 but her pilot, a U.S. Navy aviator on exchange duty, was rescued.

Smoke’em if ya got’em!

boeing_707_5291606861_2f9c0e4c78_b

American Airlines Boeing 707

Obviously the “No Smoking” sign only applies in the cabin

I’m old enough to remember smoking from the engines AND the passengers being perfectly acceptable.

I won’t say it was a better time but I also won’t apologize for preferring the old 4 engine models to the new, quiet twins.  It’s hard to run outside and look up like when I was a kid if I can’t hear ’em…

The token remnants of the Dutch Cavalry



The Royal Netherlands Army had a long and celebrated horse cavalry tradition that included three historic hussar (huzaren) regiments (Regiment Huzaren 1st Van Sytzama, 2nd Prins van Oranje and 3rd Prins Alexander), dating back to cuirassier units first organized by Napoleon back in 1810 (though other Dutch cavalry units went back much further). They ditched their horses after 135 years for tanks after 1945 (building to over 900 main battle tanks by 1985), but overtime all three of these units were disbanded– though a small measure of each remain.

Read the rest here: The token remnants of the Dutch Cavalry