Politico: Washington hasn’t allowed Europe to train Ukrainians on the F16 yet


Politico reported that European countries haven’t yet received official permission from the United States to train Ukrainian pilots on F16 fighter jets.

Politico reported that nearly a dozen European countries that have promised to train Ukrainian pilots are still awaiting formal US approval to start the program.

It’s mentioned, in the context, that training cannot begin without an official decision from the US State Department to transfer instructions and simulators, and this hasn’t happened yet.

The Pentagon told Politico that the request is still under study, while the report indicates that there is nothing to suggest that the United States will refuse to grant the required permission.

Earlier, the Pentagon stated, “the current time is still not appropriate to transfer combat aircraft to Ukraine,” noting that the conditions for their deployment aren’t ideal, including the vast Russian air defense capabilities.

A few days ago, the former commander of the US Air Force, General Charlie Tuna Moore, spoke to Newsweek magazine about the dangers of the West sending F16s to Ukraine, mentioning a number of complications that accompany this process.

Newsweek magazine quoted Moore as saying that it is likely that countries that provide Kiev with fourth-generation fighters, such as the F16, will need to send contractors or military personnel with experience in maintaining advanced aircraft.

In this regard, he explained, “Basic training can cover some aspects of aircraft maintenance, but maintenance of avionics and hydraulic systems is a different story”.

The administration of US President Joe Biden had given the green light to its Western allies and partners to transfer part of their stocks of US-made F16 to Ukraine, after paving the way for them to do so, and added that the United States would help on training Ukrainian pilots to use it.

Moscow has repeatedly warned against the West providing Ukraine with F16 fighter jets, usually this step is tantamount to playing with fire.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov confirmed two days ago that the F16s that will be delivered to Ukraine will be considered by Moscow as a nuclear threat.

Lavrov added, “Russia cannot ignore the ability of these devices to carry nuclear charges,” noting that Moscow has warned the United States, the United Kingdom and France.

For his part, Russia’s ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov, said that sending F16s to Ukraine would raise questions about the involvement of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in the conflict.

Prior to that, the Deputy Chairman of the Russian Security Council, Dmitry Medvedev, stated that the greater the supply of destructive weapons to the Kiev regime, the greater the possibility of a scenario of the nuclear end of the world.

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