Speaking of Top Gun, the eighties movie with an incredibly young Tom Cruise, a movie that made US pilots into rock-stars, today we have news about a Russian version of Top Gun, i.e. a Russian pilot whose fighter jet came incredibly close to a US Navy aircraft in what can be best described as a crazy stunt with a happy ending.
Fox News reports quoting a US official about a cat and mouse game which is dubbed ” a high speed aggression”, i.e. a Russian military jet flying extremely close to a US Navy reconnaissance airplane that was surveying an area in the Black Sea. The incident happened earlier this week, on Tuesday, with the Russian fighter staying incredibly close to the US Navy spy-plane for almost five minutes.
The defense official speaking with Fox News was quoted as saying:
While this one was considered by the flight crew to be safe and professional, this sort of close encounter certainly has the possibility to become dangerous in a hurry,
The American surveillance airplane was a Boeing P-8A Poseidon, formerly known as a Multimission Maritime Aircraft. This military plane is basically a Boeing 737 specially developed and modified for the US Military, being used for conducting anti surface warfare/anti submarine warfare and for patrol/surveillance. The Russian fighter jet buzzing the Poseidon was a Su-27 and it approached the 8A Poseidon whilst the latter was flying into international airspace. As soon as the US Navy aircraft approached Russian airspace, the Su-27 was deployed for intercepting the spy plane in a greeting maneuver of sorts, which was not very much appreciated by their American counterparts.
The Russian military released an official statement on Friday:
“After approaching a plane at a safe distance the Russian pilot visually identified the flying object as a U.S. surveillance plane P-8A Poseidon,”
The encounter lasted for almost an hour in total and it’s not the first incident of its kind, nor the last. These things tend to happen rather regularly each time when the US military deploys spy planes or vessels in the near vicinity of Mother Russia.