When The US Tried To Sneak A F-117 Across Austria
YouTube / The Military Now
A Minor Misunderstanding?
The whole story dates back to October 18, 2002, just before the second invasion of Iraq. That day, the US Air Force filed a routine flight plan for a KC-10A tanker to fly over neutral Austrian airspace.
But the Air Force left out one (or two) detail(s) – they must have forgotten to mention that there would also be two Lockheed F-117A Nighthawks tucked tightly beneath its wings.
It didn’t take long for Austria to think something was afoot, unsurprisingly. The KC-10A was hurriedly detected by Austria’s Goldhaube radar system as it approached Tyrol.
In response, the Austrians scrambled two Saab J-35 Drakens to lurk behind and photograph the tanker for ten minutes. There were even reports saying that the US’ formation tried a “defensive maneuver” when the Austrian Drakens closed in!
Luckily, no shots were fired – though it did spark a brief diplomatic spat between the US and Austria.