Welcome to another episode, the seventy-fifth, of the Lessons from the Cockpit show! I am your host Mark Hasara and for over 60 years my passion has been aviation.
The situation in the Red Sea and Gulf of Adan has everyone’s attention. It’s the continuation of the Proxy War between western powers and the Ayatollahs of Iran and their influence with the Houthi Rebels in Yemen, attacking shipping in one of the largest and wealthiest waterways on the planet. America and our allies have been here before, sometimes with tragic results. The USS Cole was nearly sunk in the Yemeni haror of Adan after an al Qaeda suicide boat rammed into it. The weapons used are now much more sophisticated and supplied by other US enemies. But we are more prepared in my opinion to fight and win a maritime conflict in this region, which this episode discusses.
This episode is financially supported by the book Tanker Pilot, found in all four formats; hardback, softback, Kindle, and Audible on Amazon. The Hardback, Kindle and Audible formats contain the 32 pictures in color, the softback in black and white. Tanker Pilot gives readers a behind the scenes look at global air refueling and air operations in four wars.
The Lessons from the Cockpit show is sponsored by Wall Pilot, custom aviation art for the walls of your home, office, or hanger. Wall Pilot creates profile views of famous aircraft, printed on vinyl in four, six, and eight foot lengths you can peel off and stick to any flat surface. Wall Pilot can also create custom graphics of your favorite airplanes with your name, tail codes and numbers, and cool weapons loads. Support the Lessons from the Cockpit show by ordering one or two of these very detailed prints for the walls of your home, office, or hanger. We did a thirty foot long profile for one customer and his hanger!
US and Coalition forces recently struck Houthi targets in Yemen. The Navy aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower has four F-18 Super Hornet squadrons in its air wing. This F-18F Super Hornet from VFA-103 represents the 22 Super Hornets involved in the air strikes in Yemen.
The strike packages were supported with electronic intelligence by the RC-135 Rivet Joint signals collection and intelligence aircraft of the US Air Force. This print is an RC-135 Rivet Joint aircraft assigned to the 343rd Reconnaissance Squadron of the 55th Reconnaissance Wing, Offutt Air Force base Nebraska.
F-15E Strike Eagles from Royal Air Force Lakenheath England have deployed to the region when Iran tried to close down shipping going through the Straight of Hormuz. This F-15E Strike Eagle from the 494th Fighter Squadron is configured for the Maritime Air Support or MAS mission to interdict and destroy enemy surface ships using Laser and GPS guided weapons. The Panthers Strike Eagles carried the AN-ASQ-236 Dragon Eye pod on the centerline as this graphic depicts.
Unmanned and remotely piloted vehicles have played a huge role in the Horn of Africa, combating terrorism and piracy on the high seas. This MQ-9 Reaper drone armed with GBU-12 500 pound laser-guided bombs and AGM-114 Hellfire missiles is assigned to the 867th Attack Squadron of the 432nd Wing based out of Creech Air Base north of Las Vegas Nevada. MQ-9 Reapers are the type of drones operating out of Djibouti and Chadbelli airports in the Horn of Africa.
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