Thursday, 20 April 2017
In another reversionary twist, I see that the US has been scrambling a variety of planes to monitor Russian Tupulev 95s which have been flying around the Alaskan coastal area during the last week.
The Tu95 is supposedly still capable as a nuclear bomber, but I presume they are all kitted out as spy planes and response testers nowadays.
It's kind of odd that we now have the two old super-powers deploying their 60 year old planes (notice that the Tu95 is propeller based) and the American B52 uses ancient smoky 1960s jet engines.
Curiously, the British stopped using their similar vintage Vulcans back in 1984, although there were preserved versions flying until around 2015. My Vulcan pictures here are ones I took when I saw 'The Spirit of Great Britain' at Farnborough a few years ago.
Admittedly there is some engine haze, but it is nothing like the trails of smoke from any of today's B52s.
There is something particularly worrying around the thought that current superpower big bombers are from the same era as the Dr Strangelove movie.
"Well, Dimitri... he went and did a silly thing." Although, come to think of it, the new Putin command centre is more styled on mid-century NASA rather than the darker Kubrik.