F-16 and the issue of America’s Prestige

In the latest development, National Security Advisor of India Ajit Doval has reportedly provided evidence to the United States on Pakistan’s alleged misuse of an F-16 fighter aircraft to target Indian military installations. Pakistan has repeatedly claimed that it did not use F-16 for the purpose.

The United States is yet to take a call on this and looks like it is not going to be easier for them to accept it either.

F-16 fighting falcon is a single-engine supersonic fighter aircraft, originally developed by General Dynamics for the United States Air Force. A fleet of these F-16s was used by the US army to fight against the Taliban of Afghanistan with Pakistan’s help. The planes are currently in the custody of Pakistan Air Force and the agreement between the United States and Pakistan clearly states that Pakistan should not use them in an offensive role.

On the other hand, wing commander Abhinandan used an old fighter plane viz., Mig21 Bison manufactured by Russia in the 1970s to bring down a much superior and advanced F-16, developed by the Americans. This may irk the US with a big question mark on its defence technology.

Though Pakistan claims that it did not use an F-16 to enter Indian Airspace, the Indian government’s evidence proves it otherwise. The onus is now with the United States to either accept the evidence provided by India and take action against Pakistan for violating the usage agreement or deny it and continue to showcase its upper hand over Russia in the field of defence technology.