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Birth of Jet Aircraft

The Korean War served as the arena for history's first air-to-air combat by jet-propelled aircraft. U.S. Air Force pilots did not start scoring heavily against Russian-made MiG-15 jets until the swept-wing F-86A Sabre arrived in Korea in late 1950. Then the victories began to mount, and by the end of hostilities in July 1953, 38 USAF pilots had become aces by shooting down five or more enemy aircraft (nearly all of which were MiG-15s).

The first jet-to-jet victory took place on Nov. 8, 1950, when Lt. Russell J. Brown, flying an F-80C, shot down a much faster MiG-15 over North Korea.

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Related Fact Sheets
Lockheed F-80C Shooting Star
North American F-86A Sabre
Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15bis
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