EAST-WEST: Probing NATO's Northern Flank

On the average of three times monthly, a Soviet Tu-16 "Badger" reconnaissance jet roars off from the world's largest military base, just outside Murmansk, and heads westward to probe Norway's air defenses. Alerted by radar, a vast ultramodern command center in the craggy mountain range of northern Norway scrambles two Norwegian Royal Air Force F-104G Starfighters. The fighters usually intercept the Badger within a few minutes; one of them hangs off the Soviet craft's tail, while the other flies just ahead of its nose. The lead Norwegian Starfighter will then waggle its...

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