Ukraine releases grandiose ‘TOP GUN’-style video of pilots showing off their skills to secure F-16 reinforcements

The US Air Force said in July that it would consider sending the state-of-the-art fighter jets for Zelensky's army, but confirmed this month that it would not do so

Ukraine releases grandiose ‘TOP GUN’-style video of pilots showing off their skills to secure F-16 reinforcements
Kyiv hoped to use its pilots’ courage to convince America to send more fighter jets (@Defense of Ukraine/Twitter)
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KYIV, UKRAINE: Ukrainian pilots were filmed performing stunts in the skies above their war-torn country to the soundtrack of the iconic 1980s film 'Top Gun.' The Defense Ministry released a 'Top Gun'-style video on Saturday, August 27, showing the country's top pilots effortlessly gliding and even spinning upside down in midair. The 'Top Gun' song 'Danger Zone' by Kenny Loggins plays in the background, making the inspiration for the viral clip unmistakable. The video was released on the occasion of Aviation Day in Ukraine. The video opens with these lines, "For the last 184 days the pilots of the Ukrainian Air Force have been fighting against a numerically and technologically superior enemy."

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Other bold and fearless stunts pulled off by the country's pilots included helicopters flying under telephone lines. But the clip posted by the Ukrainian MoD was also intended to persuade the United States to sell Kyiv F-16 fighter jets, according to Daily Mail. The US Air Force July said it would consider sending the highly advanced warplanes for use in Zelensky's army but this month confirmed that would not happen. The Pentagon instead announced a new $1 billion (£850billion) arms supply package for Ukraine, including HIMARS rockets and missile launchers. That came before another $3 billion (£2.5billion) was pledged by Washington days later.

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The money will help to fund contracts for drones, weapons, and other equipment that may not see the battlefront for a year or two. The Biden administration will have offered a total of near $14billion over the course of 19 aid packages, with the added $3billion, since February. That's in addition to two separate aid packages, one worth $40billion and one worth $13.6billion that Congress has approved for Ukraine.

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Lieutenant Colonel Kendall said that Ukraine is busy dealing with its 'right now problem' in an allusion to its ground-based fighting in the Donbas region. But he also said that assistance in the form of aircraft may be needed. "We'll be open to discussions with them about what their requirements are and how we might be able to satisfy them," the Air Force head said during the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado last month. General Brown also said that the US has a responsibility to help train Ukrainian pilots on how to fly the different aircraft should they provide it to their forces.

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A total of $775 million was sent last week, which contains 16 Howitzer systems, 1,000 Javelin systems that have been hammering Russian armor, as well as an undisclosed number of HARM missiles that go after radar systems. It also includes 15 ScanEagle drones, a low-altitude unmanned aerial vehicle made by Boeing, as well as 40 MRAPS, tactical vehicles meant to withstand improvised explosives. The drones can be used for surveillance, and are launched using a pneumatic launcher without the need for an airfield.

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