I remember the moment quite vividly, I was a student at Lead-In Fighter Training and in an Intel Class. The moment was that blinding flash of enlightenment and realization that flying a fighter, something I'd wanted to do all my life, just might not be all guns and glory.
The instructor, a rather cute Lt, was briefing us on the armament carried by various Soviet aircraft. She'd rattle on about the Mig-21 Fishbeds carrying Atolls and having a 23mm cannon whereas the Su-11 Fishpot only carried missiles. My mind (I was unmarried at the time) was, lets just say, more interested in the Lt than in what she had to say.
Yeah, Yeah, Yeah...Why do I care if they've got missiles AND guns or just missiles?
That's when the moment happened.
Hey, Dummy! Wouldn't it be nice to know what the bad guys are trying to kill you with? or even worse shooting you down?
You see, while I didn't want to die, the thought of becoming a POW
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