AVIATION: The Cats of MIG Alley

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It was, as the briefing officer said, "a day worth drooling over," a fine day for hunting MIGs. With the howl of a tornado, four F-86 Sabre jets roared up from the Korean airfield and headed north for MIG Alley. For half an hour they climbed steadily, timing their ascent to conserve fuel and reach the Yalu at 45,000 ft. At that altitude, everything was silvery and incredibly bright; above, the sky was dark and greyish.

The air was so thin that the pilots had to take in their oxygen under pressure...

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