The F-15EX variant of the F-15 series of US Air Force fighter planes, was renamed the Eagle II in a ceremony on Wednesday at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida. Lt. Gen. Duke Richardson announced the official designation in a rollout of the plane, which will replace the aging F-15C/D fleet. The US Air Force accepted its first F-15EX from manufacturer Boeing on March 11.

The US Air Force (USAF)/Lockheed Martin AGM-183A Air-launched Rapid Response Weapon (ARRW) conventional hypersonic glide weapon prototype failed its first booster vehicle flight test on April 5, according to a statement. The ARRW failed to complete its launch sequence and did not deploy from its Boeing B-52H Stratofortress heavy bomber carriage aircraft. The B-52H flew over the Point Mugu Sea Range near California, intending to fire the ARRW booster test vehicle. Instead, the weapon returned with the B-52H to Edwards Air Force Base (AFB), California.

Middle East & Africa

The Israeli Air Force (IAF) announced the arrival of its new Oron intelligence-gathering aircraft after it landed at Nevatim Air Base. The Oron is a Gulfstream G550 business jet that will have its mission systems installed over the next two years, the IAF said. This process will be led by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) in collaboration with the Ministry of Defense’s Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D), the IAF, the Intelligence Directorate, and the Israeli Navy.


Four Greek pilots have started their training on flying the Rafale. Three of them flew the Mirage 2000 previously while the other one flies the F-16. The four of them will later become instructors to help train the next batch of eight pilots.

The Cyprus National Guard carried out a joint training exercise with Israel on April 5 to April 6. Exercise ONISILOS GEDEON 2021 involves the Tor M1 air defense missile system and Israeli F-15s and F-35s.


According to Reuters, Taiwan’s Defense Ministry reported a new incursion by China’s air force into the island’s air defense identification zone, made up of eight fighter jets and two other aircraft, one of which flew through the strategic Bashi Channel. Taiwan has complained over the last few months of repeated missions by China’s air force near the island, concentrated in the southwestern part its air defense zone near the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands.

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