Bombers of the V-Force…Image #3: A Vickers Valiant
The Fleet Air Arm of the Early Cold War…Image No.2: A Hawker Sea Hawk readying for arrester line capture on landing
What Might Have Been…The Avro Canada Arrow: Image #2
RL-201 and RL-202, the first two Arrow prototypes
Closing in four days, the current runaway leader is the MiG-21 Fishbed, with tied for equal second are the MiG-29 Fulcrum and MiG-15 Fagot. Vote now…
Gloster Meteors - Britain’s First Jet Fighter…Image #3: A French NF.11 Nightfighter in service with the Armee de L’Air
Which MiG Fighter Since 1945 Is The Most Important…Candidate #8: MiG-29 Fulcrum
The MiG-29 has been the most widely exported and deployed Mikoyan-Gurevich fighter since the MiG-21, seeing service with approximately 38 national air forces, and being the first MiG type to see aircraft carrier service. Part of the Soviet response to the American development of the F-14/15/16/18 fighter programs, the Fulcrum has shown performance aspects superior to those and other similar generation NATO/Western fighters. It has seen combat during the Iran-Iraq War and the First Gulf War, in the Horn of Africa, in the dissolution of the former states of Yugoslavia, the Kargil War over Kashmir and possibly in other lower level combat situations. As demonstrated by ex-East German Fulcrums absorbed into the Luftwaffe the MiG-29 was capable of meeting the threat posed by Western air force types however poor serviceability and maintenance has led to a degradation of the fighter’s overall reputation.
To vote for the MiG-29 Fulcrum please follow this link.
Which MiG Fighter Since 1945 Is The Most Important…Candidate #7: MiG-25 Foxbat
The MiG-25’s greatest achievement as a fighter may not have been in aerial combat, but as an indirect influence on American fighter design and development in the 1970s. Seen as a technologically advanced interceptor when first put into service with a top speed and ceiling that put out of the reach of many contemporary NATO aircraft, it was revealed through defections and combat in Arab-Israeli dogfights that the MiG-25 was a heavy interceptor that would not be as able to compete with dedicated air superiority fighters in more complex aerial conflict contexts. Not as widely produced nor made available to Soviet aligned air forces, the Foxbat has seen its most active fighter related service with the Hussein era Iraqi air force. It has arguably been more successful as a high speed reconnaissance aircraft.
If you consider the MiG-25 has been the most important fighter from the Mikoyan-Gurevich design bureau vote here.
Which MiG Fighter Since 1945 Is The Most Important…Candidate #5: MiG-21 Fishbed
The MiG-21 Fishbed (and its Chinese licenced built variant the Chengdu J-7) has seen front line use for nearly half a century with approximately 50 air forces aligned with or supported by the old USSR. It has seen combat in numerous wars, including those fought between the Arabs and Israelis, India and Pakistan, the Vietnam War, the Iraq-Iran War, lower level conflicts in Africa and wars fought between the former states of Yugoslavia. Produced in larger numbers than any other supersonic warplane it is still serving with many air forces and has recently been used by the Syrian government to suppress the current popular uprising against President Assad. It is reasonable to argue that not since the Korean War has one type been involved so many different wars or outbreaks of conflict between states.
If you think the Fishbed and its variants is the most important MiG fighter vote here.
Which MiG Fighter Since 1945 Is The Most Important…Candidate #4: MiG-19 Farmer
The MiG-19 continued the tradition of the earlier Mig-15 and MiG-17 serving with multiple Warsaw Pact and Soviet-aligned air forces during the majority of the Cold War era. The first MiG fighter capable of supersonic speed at level flight, the Farmer saw combat in numerous wars (notably the Vietnam War as well as the Six Day War and Yom Kippur War between Arab nations and Israel. Acquired by many African states it was deployed in several conflicts on the continent, whilst the Communist Chinese used it during skirmishes over the Straits of Taiwan. Chinese-licenced Shenyang J-6 variants were employed by the Pakistani Air Force in its wars against India in the 1960s and 1970s. Produced in smaller quantities than its MiG predecessors the Farmer and the Shenyang J-6 may be considered to being less significant than the Fagot and Fresco overall.
To vote for the MiG-19 Farmer visit this link.
Which MiG Fighter Since 1945 Is The Most Important…Candidate #3: MiG-17 Fresco
An advanced refinement of the MiG-15, the Fresco served as the basis of many Soviet-aligned and supported air forces around the world during the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, being most notable in its successful performance as a fighter employed against the Americans by the NVAF during the Vietnam War. The type also saw combat in numerous wars in Africa (such as Cuban MiG-17s flown during the Angolan War and Nigerian MiG-17s during the Biafran War). The Mig-17 was also a major type in service with the Egyptian and other Arab air forces during the 1967 Six day War and the 1973 Yom Kippur War. Licenced production was undertaken by the Poles (as the Lim-5) and Chinese (Shenyang J-5/F-5).
A stalwart of the Warsaw Pact air forces the MiG-17 Fresco is still in service with some countries today, and numerous examples are privately owned and flown in the US. You can vote for the MiG-17 here.