Armour Collection B11F018 USAF F-16C Fighting Falcon Fighter - 111th Fighter Squadron, 147th Fighter Wing, Texas Air National Guard, Ellington Field, TX, 2007, "90th Anniversary" (1:48 Scale)
"Obsolete weapons do not deter."
- British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
Even at the ripe old age of 20, the F-16 Falcon remains a fast and potent favorite among fighter pilots, and one of the best fighters in its class. Designed originally as a no-frills, single-engine "hot rod", the addition of improved radar and weaponry have made the Falcon a super, lightweight jet. Used mainly as a bomber, the Fighting Falcon can also turn-and-burn with unbridled fury when provoked. It is also one of the first operational fly-by-wire aircraft; its flight controls being electronically operated and computer controlled. A 20mm cannon, Maverick missiles, and laser-guided bombs make the F-16 a potent multi-role fighter. However, it's light weight, speed and agility make it the choice of the US Air Force's Thunderbirds aerobatic team.
Pictured here is a 1:48 scale replica of a USAF F-16C Fighting Falcon fighter that was attached to the 111th Fighter Squadron, 147th Fighter Wing, Texas Air National Guard, deployed to Ellington Field, Texas in 2007 and commemorating the unit's 90th Anniversary.
Release Date: February 2009
Historical Account: "Controversial Service"- The George W. Bush military service controversy was an issue in the 2000 presidential campaign and in the 2004 presidential campaign. The controversy centered on questions of how George W. Bush, who would later become the 43rd President of the United States, came to be a member of the Texas Air National Guard, why he lost his flight status, and whether he fulfilled the requirements of his military service contract during the Vietnam War.
Bush enlisted in the Texas Air National Guard on May 27, 1968, during the Vietnam War, with a commitment to serve until May 26, 1974. In his 1968 Statement of Intent (undated), he wrote, "I have applied for pilot training with the goal of making flying a lifetime pursuit and I believe I can best accomplish this to my own satisfaction by serving as a member of the Air National Guard as long as possible." He performed Guard duty as an F-102 pilot through April 1972, logging a total of 336 flight hours and was promoted once during his service, to First Lieutenant.
In November 1970, Lt. Col. Jerry B. Killian, commander of the 111th Fighter Squadron (Texas Air National Guard), recommended that Bush be promoted to First Lieutenant, calling him "a dynamic outstanding young officer" who stood out as "a top notch fighter interceptor pilot." He said that "Lt. Bush's skills far exceed his contemporaries," and that "he is a natural leader whom his contemporaries look to for leadership. Lt. Bush is also a good follower with outstanding disciplinary traits and an impeccable military bearing."
Bush's six-year obligation to serve required him to maintain his immediate readiness to be called to active duty in the event of a national emergency. Bush's military records indicate that until May 1972 he fulfilled that obligation. After that, Bush may have failed to meet the attendance requirements established for members of the Air National Guard, and the Air Force requirement for an annual physical examination for pilots.