Currently, Venezuela is going through an era of profound transformations, including the armed forces. In this article we will focus on the reform of the Bolivarian Republic Air Force. This branch in modern wars is one of the most significant.
Since coming to power in December 1998 patriotic Lieutenant Colonel Hugo Chavez, who is trying to build a socialist state, Venezuela has faced and continues to face with a rather aggressive U.S. policy. Given the difficult relationship with the U.S. leadership of Venezuela, the presence of well-armed and combat-ready Air Force is the guarantor of peace and stability in the region.
One of aggressive manifestations of this policy was to prevent supplies of spare parts to Venezuela and the U.S. aircraft production. For a country whose foundation fleet until mid-2000s were Western aircraft, it was quite palpable hit. After the suppression in Venezuela in April 2002, the right of rebellion, it became clear that the West at all costs try to overthrow the government of Hugo Chavez patriotic. It is for this reason, and also because of the sanctions imposed against Venezuela, the country changed its vector military procurement. In 2006-2009, Venezuela signed a series of military contracts for the supply of aircraft with Russia, China and Brazil .
Reforming Air Force became the Chavez government for this problem. From the post of the Air Force were dismissed generals who received military training in the United States, and instead recruited a new army aviation military personnel who support the revolutionary-nationalist views the state leader. Back in 2005, in Spain there was a case with the "brain" of documents promptly Staff NATO plan, which was directed against Venezuela and carried the name "Operation Balboa".
This plan includes applying for NATO Venezuela massive air strikes from the territory of the Dutch Antilles, which are at a distance of only a few tens of kilometers from the capital of Venezuela -Caracas. In recent years, the U.S. Army deployed in Latin America, a network of military bases, which allow you to control virtually the entire continent. U.S. bases deployed in Honduras, Panama, Paraguay and Colombia.
Su-30 Venezuelan Air Force
Given this, Venezuela has been actively upgrading its fleet. Currently, his foundation and the main striking power Air Force is 24 Russian Su-30MKV Sioux 30MKV -version for Vietnam. Also, the Air Force of Venezuela is 21 fighter F-16A, which were delivered to the country back in 1983-1985, of which the state is fighting the order of 12 machines. Also, the Air Force is from 4 to 10 Canadian fighter CF-5A/B "Tiger", which represent a licensed copy of the American fighter "Northrop F-5 Freedom Fighter".
Training Aircraft, which can also be used as a light attack aircraft, represented by 19 training aircraft Embraer EMB 312 "Tucano" Brazilian production just ordered 32 aircraft, 18 combat trainer aircraft Hongdu K-8W Karakorum Chinese production has booked 22 machine.
Also the Air Force has a small amount of up to 4 units of light attack aircraft Rockwell OV-10A/E Bronco American production. Military transport aircraft incorporates 10 Russian Il-76MD-90, U.S. 6 C-130H "Hercules" and up to 8 transport aircraft Chinese Y-8 , which are a copy of the Russian An-12.
helicopter regiment in the Air Force of the Bolivarian Republic are armed with up to 38 military transport helicopters Mi-17V5, 3 heavy transport helicopter Mi-26T2 and 10 multi-role combat helicopter Mi-35M -all cars produced in Russia. In addition, the Air Force has 14 helicopters "Eurocopter" AS-332 Super Puma and "Eurocopter" AS-532 AC/UL Cougar French production.
F-16A Venezuelan Air ForceThe acquisition of 24
heavy Su-30MKV version created specifically for Venezuela based on the Su-30MK2 Hugo Chavez announced in June 2006. Shortly thereafter, July 2, 2006, two Russian Su-30MK accompanied by military transport aircraft Il-76 arrived at the El Libertador Air Base to demonstrate their leadership qualities Venezuela and the national Air Force. As honorary escort they were accompanied by three F-16 fighters and two "Mirage" were retired in 2009.
During the visit, the Russian Su-30MK held several demonstrations dogfighting to assess their flight data and weapons. In educational battles they fought with 50 Mirage and F-16. Particularly striking steel training fights with six F-16 fighters, and then with six Mirage 50, which were carried out to demonstrate the capabilities rossiykoy radar "H 011VE." July 14, 2006, both fighters returned to Russia, July 28 countries signed a bilateral contract for $ 1.5 billion, which included not only the supply of aircraft, but their service, spare parts and weapons, as well as training of flight and technical personnel.
Currently Venezuelan Air Force is fully satisfied with the quality set out in the country of Su-30.
The question is, at what level of losses willing to Hugo Chavez`s opponents, in order to secure his overthrow. Too tempting looks Venezuelan goal for the West, especially the United States, who expect to get access to Venezuelan oil, eliminate the communist threat and deprive Russia`s strategic ally in the region. Such a goal justifies any means.
Today, Venezuela is one of Russia`s strategic partner and a major exporter of Russian arms. Currently, there are various stages of negotiations on the possible supply to Venezuela Su-35s, maritime patrol aircraft based on the Il-114 passenger, fire amphibious aircraft Be-200 attack helicopters Mi-28N and light multipurpose helicopters "Asante."
Cooperation with China
currently expect to purchase Venezuelan Air Force 2 Squadron Chinese trainer aircraft Hongdu K-8W Karakorum, the corresponding statement was made by President Hugo Chav. Venezuela has already received 18 such aircraft and expects to acquire another 22 machines. The total transaction value is approximately $ 82 million.
first batch of K-8W Venezuela bought back in 2008, the first six aircraft were transferred to Air Force in March 2010. The remaining aircraft were delivered to the country during 2011. In addition to direct aircraft Venezuela acquired in China and ground equipment for their maintenance.
K-8W Karakorum Venezuelan Air Force
By purchasing these training aircraft Venezuelan Air Force calculated fill shortage of training aircraft, which arose after the transfer of U.S. aircraft Rockwell T-2D Buckeye. Double trainer aircraft K-8W Karakorum able to accelerate to 800 km/h and a range of up to fly 2,200 km. In a combat version of these machines can be equipped with 23-mm cannon, in addition to that, the plane has five suspension points for bombs, rockets and external fuel tanks discharged.
addition Air Force purchased in China 8 medium transport aircraft Y-8 "Shaanxi". Their deliveries began in 2012 . Representatives of the Air Force of the country noted that the purchase of tactical transport Chinese Y-8 will be an incentive for further cooperation between the two countries. In addition to the listed aircraft Venezuela has received from China 10 mobile radars and talks about the possibility of delivery of multipurpose Chinese J-10 fighter.
/ Sergei Yuferev, topwar.ru /