In fifteen months at KAF I never saw a C-5 Galaxy, but I did see Antonov AN-124’s, beaucoup Il-76’s and a butt load of An-24’s. A buddy of mine was running with the Transient Alert guys and got invited aboard an An-24 for lunch. There were no billets made available to most of these guys when they Remained Over Night, so they camped out in their planes like they were RV’s. Interesting characters!
Ex-Soviet air lifters carry a lot of the tonnage needed to maintain an army on the other side of the world. I don’t know if I’ve ever flown in a bird piloted by a Russian, but I’ve ridden with two Uzbeks who probably learned to fly in the old Soviet Voenno-Transportnaya Aviatsiya.
Anyway, read Volga Dnepr Antonov AN-124 forced to land after violating Indian airspace and scratch your head as you ponder what that pilot was thinking about on the way from FJDG to OAKN, and what his cargo might be.
UPDATE 20090622: Intruding Volga Dnepr Antonov AN-124 finally departs Mumbai. Crazy Ivan identifies himself to Indian ADIZ as “VDA 4466” and then identifies himself to Pakistani ADIZ as “RCH 813.”
Apparently this is not the first intrusion by this aircraft; it has been happening for the past 15 days. The failure of the Indian authorities to register this intrusion earlier, has raised several questions about the alertness of the agencies entrusted with the task of giving air clearances to all flights using Indian airspace.