Karaya: F-16s will reveal our potential; NATO will have a lot to learn

December 28,2022 1008
Karaya: F-16s will reveal our potential; NATO will have a lot to learn

Ukrainian military pilots perform tasks not technically provided for by their planes and work with modern methods, one of the best Ukrainian fighter pilots said in an interview with Ukrainian Pravda.

Vadym Voroshilov, a 28-year-old military pilot with the call sign “Karaya,” destroyed five enemy drones over Vinnytsya on October 12 and ejected, taking the fighter jet away from the settlement. After this heroic maneuver, the President of Ukraine awarded him the title of Hero of Ukraine, and the locals nicknamed the pilot the “Ghost of Vinnytsya.”

According to the hero, Western fighter planes, such as the F-16, will reveal the full potential of the Armed Forces’ pilots.

“A lot can be said, but I will only say that we perform tasks that were technically not even planned at designing our aircraft,” says Karaya. “The enemy, having an advantage, works as it is written in the textbooks on tactical and fire training. We operate using more modern methods that are not prescribed in any of the textbooks of any country in the world.”

“Western-type fighter jets will help us to 100% reveal our potential,” he emphasized.

Vadym says that despite the very limited technical capabilities at the disposal of Ukrainian pilots, they try to work effectively in extreme conditions. He also agreed with the statement that NATO pilots will have something to learn from the Ukrainians after the war.

According to the pilot, at this stage Ukraine needs the F-16s, which are one of the most massive aircraft of their class in the world. Ukraine will be able to service it, and thanks to its Western partners, it will not experience a munition shortage.

“We can, of course, consider different types, for example Gripen, Eurofighter. They are more resistant to our airfield infrastructure, but with all this they are not massive. There is no, let’s say, “secondary market” for such aircraft in the world,” Karaya explains. “If you consider the time already after the victory, there is a lot to choose from. Of course, there are aircraft that, I would say, are almost perfect in terms of combat capabilities. These are F-22, F-35. But at the moment, it is the F-16 that will greatly improve the situation and help our defense forces in the complex.”

One of the reasons for the delay in the transfer of F-16 fighters to Ukraine is the long-term training of Ukrainian pilots. At the end of last week, the House of Representatives of the US Congress approved funding for the training of Ukrainian pilots on American fighter jets, allocating $100 million for this.

The Ukrainian Air Force has already identified a group of pilots who can begin training on modern foreign fighters, and it is up to Western partners to decide on the type of aircraft that can be provided to Ukraine.