Saturday, September 23, 2023
HomeNewsWhy is the United States afraid to send its F-16 planes to...

Why is the United States afraid to send its F-16 planes to Ukraine?

“Fighter aircraft alliance“, which is being formed by the UK, Holland, France and, possibly, other European countries to organize the supply of modern fighter jets to Ukraine, is a very big step towards this goal, but so far this alliance has not achieved, in fact, a military approach.

We are only talking about the future training of Ukrainian pilots, and it is not yet known for sure what kind of aircraft they will be trained to fight.

However, the creation of the union is already a big step for Ukraine. Discussions about the possible transfer of fighter jets to the Ukrainian Armed Forces have been going on for several months, but so far they have only talked about training flight attendants as a possibility.

However, the Downing Street statement did not indicate the type of aircraft the Ukrainian pilots would be trained on. This is what it said:

“This summer, we will begin the initial stage of pilot training for Ukrainian pilot groups, basic training. These are designed to counter the program used by British pilots so that Ukrainians can acquire flying skills that will enable them to use a variety of aircraft. Alongside the training process, the UK will make efforts to work with other countries to ensure that Ukraine receives the F-16 – Ukraine’s preferred option.”

From this information, it cannot be concluded that pilots will be trained on the F-16. They remain a target, but it is impossible to conclude that pilots will be trained to fly these aircraft.

French President Emmanuel Macron also announced his readiness to start training Ukrainian pilots, and said that other European countries are also ready to train aircrew for the Ukrainian Armed Forces. It does not say about the types of aircraft that Ukrainian pilots will be trained to fly.

After talks between Rishi Sunak and the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Downing Street issued a statement that could conclude that Britain will try to provide Ukraine with F-16s, but the pilots will be trained on an unnamed type of aircraft.

“The British Prime Minister and Prime Minister Rutte have agreed that they will work to build an international coalition to provide Ukraine with air combat capabilities, providing support in everything from training pilots to buying F-16 fighter jets,” the statement said. . .

The UK is capable of training pilots for almost all types of fighter aircraft used by NATO member states. The F-16 is not in service with the British Air Force.

American doubts

The problem here is that in order to transfer the F-16 to Ukraine, the approval of the United States, the manufacturer of the aircraft, is required.

At the same time, in the United States itself there is no unequivocal opinion on whether such aircraft should be transferred to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

The decision to transfer such effective weapons is taken not only by the military, but also by politicians. After the statements of the United Kingdom, France and the Netherlands, one can talk about a political agreement on this issue among several European countries, but the United States has not yet made that decision. In fact, Washington did not issue any official statement from which one could draw conclusions about the outlook for such a transfer.

At the end of January, US President Joe Biden, when asked if the US will give Ukraine fighter jets, said no. But, this issue probably concerned the transfer of American aircraft, and not those that were delivered to other countries.

On May 18, the New York Times published an article that, citing an anonymous source, said that the United States not only will not transfer the aircraft to Kiev, but also will not give permission to train them.
Advantages and disadvantages

The fact that there are discussions in the United States about the delivery of aircraft to the Armed Forces of Ukraine is also reported by the NYT. An anonymous official quoted by the publication is of the opinion that it is better for Ukraine to move ground and air defense systems.

This view is supported, for example, by Jack Reid, the head of the Senate Armed Services Committee. In early February, the US edition of Air Force Base, which is published by the American Astronautical Society, published an article that cited Reed’s statements in a discussion about the need to send F-16s to Ukraine.

According to Reed, Ukrainian military pilots cannot use 100 percent of even the old Soviet aircraft they have because of the danger from Russian air defenses.

“They fly at tree level to reach the target, fly to a safe height where they can drop weapons […] They lost a few pilots because of this,” the senator said.

“You have to ask yourself, what would the F-16 add to that? You won’t be able to take advantage of range, altitude and other advantages, because the atmosphere doesn’t really allow it,” says Jack Reed. . He advocates the transfer of ATACMS missiles to Ukraine.

A political question

The political decision of the European allies, the fact that several countries came together at once and announced that they were ready to train Ukrainian aircrews is already a very big event.

Of course, the transfer of a large number of aircraft (an adviser to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense Yuriy Sak told Politico that Kyiv wants 40-50 aircraft from allies) is a more difficult operation than the research of other armored vehicles.

This is a very difficult task, even from the organizational and organizational point of view. To train pilots for a new type in the long term, it will be necessary to build in many airports from scratch, to protect them from missile attacks, to train the command of the Air Force and headquarters to prepare and conduct air operations.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular