Combat Aircraft - December 2011

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FRONT LINE
Our hard-hitting regular column by Robert F. Dorr, this month including an exclusive interview with USAF chief Gen Norton Schwartz

FORTRESS AT SEA
Luigino Caliaro and Massimo Cestaro report from the flight deck of the USS George H. W. Bush, the US Navy's latest carrier, during its first operational deployment in the Arabian Sea

VC10: STILL IN DEMAND
As the countdown to retirement for the RAF's veteran Vickers VC10 air-to-air refueling aircraft continues, Tim Ripley details how it remains at the forefront of RAF operations at home and overseas

CHILE'S MULTI-MISSION MASTERS
Cees-Jan van der Ende reports on the activities of Grupo 10 of the Fuerza A‚rea de Chile (FACh) at `Comodoro Arturo Benitez' International Airport in the Chilean capital Santiago

VIPER CREW
The mission of the Royal Netherlands AF's 322 Fighter Squadron is clear: to provide offensive and defensive fighter cover with its F-16AM Fighting Falcons. Cristian Schrik describes a day in the life of the squadron's F-16 maintainers

HOT, HIGH AND HEAVY
Paul Filmer travels to Eagle County Airport to visit the Colorado Army National Guard's High-altitude ARNG Aviation Training Site, better known as HAATS

HELMAND'S FLYING LEATHERNECKS
In the first of a two-part feature, Neil Dunridge embeds with the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing (Forward) in Afghanistan to witness its fixed-wing assets in action

DESERT THUNDER
Dr Andreas Zeitler attends the Heyl Ha'Avir (Israeli AF) graduation ceremony at Hatzerim following the 36-month pilot's course that is the gateway to the front line of operations

THE LAST OF THE MOHAWKS
Escuadr¢n de Aviaci¢n de Apoyo a la Inteligencia 601 of the Argentine Army is the last military unit in the world to operate the famous Grumman OV-1 Mohawk, as Santiago Rivas discovers

CUTTING EDGE
Combat Aircraft's monthly column reporting from the front line of aerospace technology, by David Axe

HEADLINE NEWS
The Lockheed Martin F-35B has been conducting the ªrst ship suitability trials. Will the replacement for the AV-8B Harrier II prove to be easy to handle on deck for the Marine Corps?

UK NEWS
BAE Systems job cuts as Euroªghter Typhoon production rate is slowed, Hawk T2s head to the USA on demonstration tour for the USAF's T-X trainer competition

EUROPE NEWS
Bulgaria receives fiªrst Panther, Gripen offered to Croatia, Rafales back in Kandahar and Norway funds F-35

US NEWS
USAF takes delivery of ªfirst new special mission Hercules variants, CEASAR debuts in Afghanistan and reprieve for Montana ANG Eagles

WORLD NEWS
Saudi Typhoon delivery update, Indonesia eyes ex-USAF F-16s and Ecuador selects Seasprite

Special reports on Italian KC-767 operations, Dutch F-35 testing, Hawker Beechcraft AT-6 weapons trials and Chinese `Flanker' variants