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In a lengthy article, Ukrainian Air Force Commander-in-Chief Ivan Rusnak surveys the current state of the country's Air Force. He also discusses the prospects for renovation and modernization of its fleet. The following is an excerpt from the article by Air Force Commander Ivan Rusnak, entitled "The fighting capability of the Air Force will determine the modernization of hardware", published by the Ukrainian military daily Narodna Armiya on 26 September; subheadings are as published:
The Air Force of the Ukrainian Armed Forces is one of the main sources of the Ukrainian army's fighting potential. This is a complex system consisting of the appropriate directorates, military aviation units, network of aerodromes, training institutions and scientific and research institutions and, without doubt, personnel - pilots, navigation officers, engineers, technicians and mechanics. The reliable functioning of this system and the guaranteed fulfilment of its objectives demand from every single person, from every crew a high level of training and the ability to interact with one another, etc.
Not belittling the importance of every single part of the aviation system, I would like to discuss aviation hardware which, on the one hand, is the result of achievements of scientific and technical progress at a certain stage in society's development and, on the other hand, sets and forms requirements of other parts of the aviation system and determines their ability to perform goals set for them.
Today the aviation of the Air Force of the Ukrainian Armed Forces is armed with quite modern fighter planes, the Su-27, Mig-29, Su-24MP, Su-25, and the IL-76MD, IL-76MD, An-24, An-26, An-30 transport and special planes, the L-39 and An-26 training craft, the Mi-8 and Mi-9 transport helicopters of various modifications, Mi-2 training helicopters as well as the Strizh [Tu-141] and Reys [Tu-143] unmanned reconnaissance drones. These flying devices belong to the third and fourth generation aviation hardware and were produced, in the main, at the end of the 1980s and beginning of the 1990s. The aviation units of the Air Force of the Ukrainian Armed Forces are equipped with aviation hardware in accordance with the needs of its regular needs.
Besides, military aviation hardware (MAH) consists not only of manned and unmanned aircraft and helicopters but also of their engines and main reducing gear as well as fixed equipment. Military aviation hardware also includes weapons of destruction and flight simulators. The good working order of aviation hardware is also a specific category stipulated by legal documents. An aircraft (helicopter) is regarded as being in good working order when it conforms to all the requirements of technical documentation and has spare resources (service life). Set operations regarding technical servicing should be carried out on an aircraft itself.
[Passage omitted: no detail is small in aviation, everything is important due to safety]
Evaluation of good working order of military aviation hardware
Today the good working order of military aviation hardware belonging to the Air Force of the Ukrainian Armed Forces ensures the fulfilment of military tasks connected with Ukraine's air defence and protection for important state facilities as well as other set tasks. In addition to this, the existing level of working order of aviation hardware cannot satisfy me as the commander as it does not enable the carrying out planned battle training and fighting coordination between the various units to their full extent or to improve the flight training of crews. The main reasons for the …