Airmen assigned to the 94th Fighter Squadron completed the first-ever F-22 Raptor "combat surge" over the last six months in skies above Syria, the Department of Defense announced on Wednesday, conducting an aggressive number of combat sorties over a single three-day period.
The squadron, deployed to the Middle East from Joint Base Langely-Eustis in Virginia to provide air support for U.S.-led coalition forces fighting ISIS in Syria as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, conducted 590 sorties, dropping 4,250 pounds of ordnance, and "deterring" 587 enemy aircraft during the six-month deployment.
While the Pentagon didn't specify when the three-day surge occurred, the DoD stated that the squadron faced "both enemy fighters and surface-to-air missile systems" as part of the U.S. response to the Syrian regime's illegal use of chemical weapons back earlier this year.
The F-22 seems perfectly suited to deliver relative air superiority in a battle space where U.S. and foreign aircraft are increasingly entangled in regular intercepts. Indeed, the first air-to-air kill in nearly two decades involved a Syrian Sukhoi Su-22 that earned itself a missile after messing with coalition ground forces, albeit thanks to a U.S. Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet rather than an F-22.
Things will only get dicier in the coming months. Russia's Ministry of Defense recently announced its T-50 fifth-generation fighter jet that saw testing in Syria in February was on schedule to make a comeback tour. This comes just weeks after Russia announced the transfer of the S-300 missile defense system to the Syrian regime following the shootdown of a Russian Ilyushin Il-20 military aircraft over the Mediterranean.
An E-2D Hawkeye assigned to the Bluetails of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 121 lands on the flight deck aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72). (U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Will Hardy)
Nobody can be told what The Matrix is; you have to see it for yourself.
More than two decades after The Matrix showed the world what the future of the sci-fi action flick could look like, Warner Bros. Pictures plans on producing a fourth installment of the groundbreaking epic saga, Variety first reported on Tuesday.
Sailors from Coastal Riverine Squadron (CRS) 1 conduct category III qualifications on the M2A1 heavy machine gun at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif. CRS-1 is qualifying for future mobilization requirements. (U.S. Navy/Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Kenji Shiroma)
The Navy is considering giving Ma Deuce a quiet new update.
A competitor performs push-ups during the physical fitness event at the Minnesota Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition on April 4, 2019, at Camp Ripley, Minnesota. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Sgt. Sebastian Nemec)
Despite what you may have heard, the Army has not declared war on mustaches.
The Army W.T.F! Moments Facebook page on Monday posted a memo written by a 3rd Infantry Division company commander telling his soldiers that only the fittest among them will be allowed to sprout facial hair under their warrior nostrils.
"During my tenure at Battle Company, I have noticed a direct correlation between mustaches and a lack of physical fitness," the memo says. "In an effort to increase the physical fitness of Battle Company, mustaches will not be authorized for any soldier earning less than a 300 on the APFT [Army Physical Fitness Test]."