Improving with age

COMMENT

A U-2S from Beale Air Force Base, California, departs the runway at JB Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, during Exercise Northern Edge.
MSgt John Gordinier/USAF

THE US Air Force has decided to keep its venerable U-2 spyplane in service as part of its budget plan for 2018. The move marks a turnaround for the high-flying intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) asset.

Like the A-10, the ‘Dragon Lady’ has now survived repeated attempts by the service to dispose of it. Major General Jim Martin, USAF Deputy Assistant Secretary for Budget, confirmed that: “There is not a retirement date for the U-2.”

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