Iranian state media reported this week that two military pilots were killed when a fighter plane suffered a “technical fault” on the runway in southwestern Iran.
According to Iranian media, the incident involved the Iranian version of U.S. aerospace corporation Northrop’s F-5 fighter. The F-5 design dates back to the 1960s and is used primarily as an “aggressor aircraft” in training sessions by the U.S. Navy and Marines.
Iran acquired a number of F-5s when it received American support prior to the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
The Iranians have since rolled out several “indigenous” designs based heavily on the F-5, including a two-seater variant called the Saeqeh introduced in 2015 that could fit the description of the plane involved in Tuesday’s incident. Iran claims it can produce and service these jets entirely on its own, but outside military experts seriously question those boasts.
Few details of the deadly