Taiwan: Mirage 2000 fighters defeat F-16V Fighting Falcons in simulated air combat

TAIPEI, TAIWAN — Mirage 2000 fighters defeated F-16V Fighting Falcons in simulated combat. This is what Taiwanese journalist Lu Jiongchang wrote for the local online portal NOWnews at the YahooNews on January 11, 2023.

The reporter said he went on Jan. 11 to gather information about the Dragon Exercise, a traditional military exercise held in Taiwan in November. Various awards such as King of Air Combat, King of Gunnery and King of Aircrew Bomber are awarded in this exercise.

The training is important for Taiwan as it reveals the Taiwan Air Force’s combat capabilities to counter foreign threats. Lu Jiongchang met with the winner of the 2022 King of Air Combat Mission Leader title, Lieutenant Colonel Zhuang Weibo. Lieutenant Colonel Weibo is a member of the 42nd Combat Squadron of the Taiwan Air Force.

During the simulated air battles, Taiwan’s military headquarters decided to include the Taiwan Air Force’s 2nd Tactical Fighter Wing and its Mirage 2000 fighters. Thus, four Mirage 2000s would have to face four F-16V Fighting Falcons.

Taiwan’s F-16V

Interestingly, Taiwan Army HQ assigns the role of “Chinese Invader” or “China’s First Army” to the four F-16s. Thus, four Mirage 2000 fighters were sent against the Red Army. “With good training and tactical cooperation, all four F-16s were shot down and one of the Mirage 2000 fighters was shot down, resulting in a kill rate of 4:1,” said Lieutenant Colonel Weibo.

The Taiwan Air Force has 45 units of French Mirage 2000 fighters. They were purchased in the late 1980s, and the first batch of Mirage 2000s arrived in Taiwan in 1996. The Taiwan Air Force at the time operated F-104 multirole fighters and F-5E/F, but they were aging and a replacement was needed.

So Taiwan bought the Mirage 2000-5 jet equipped with the RDY radar. The RDY radar has multiple air-to-air/air-to-surface combat modes, can simultaneously track 8 targets and fire 4 medium-range MICA missiles. Thus, in the 1990s, the Mirage 2000-5 was the most powerful fighter in the Taiwan Air Force composition, surpassing many times the American F-5E/F and the local multirole fighter F-CK-1 Ching-kuo.

Taiwan’s Mirage 2000-5, however, prove to have much higher maintenance costs compared to the native F-CK-1 Ching-kuo fighter and the American F-16. Then Taiwan, having purchased the F-16 fighter from the USA later, decided to update precisely the American fighter and made it locally. The Mirage 2000 became the only one of the Air Force’s three main fighters not to be modernized.

SOURCE: bulgarianmilitary.com

The article is in Portuguese

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