Flying the Cold War A10 Tankbuster Part 2


You are listening to part 2 of my chat with Joe who joined the USAF in 1981 and was trained to fly the A10 Warthog a single-seat, twin-engine jet aircraft designed to provide close air support to ground forces by attacking tanks, armoured vehicles, and other ground targets. Part 1 is here

In 1985 Joe is sent to 92nd Tactical Fighter Squadron at RAF Bentwaters in the UK, just over 50 miles from where his father served in World War 2.

His role was to fly the A10 over West Germany and attack Warsaw Pact ground forces should the Cold War turn hot.

We hear about the perils of flying the A10 at only 100 feet in mist and rain, whilst navigating with a map on your knee in the days before GPS was available.

Joe also recounts visiting the Inner German border and driving to his wartime target sectors to see what they looked like from the ground. He describes how they trained for landing on West German autobahns as well as their tactics against enemy aircraft.

Joe also flew the Royal Air Force’s VTOL fighter, the Harrier, and tells of the challenge of managing the controls and his respect for the Royal Air Force.

Visit the RAF Bentwaters Museum here

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