[Ed. – The armament of the Su-27 Flanker makes this an extraordinary event. Of course, at 20 feet the Flanker would go to guns (30mm) rather than an anti-air missile, but the P-8A Poseidon is basically a sitting duck for either. The local situations out there have the potential to get tactically volatile very quickly. Our theater commanders have to be burning the midnight oil.]
An armed Russian fighter jet flew alarmingly close to a U.S. Navy reconnaissance aircraft flying in the Black Sea on Tuesday — just one day before Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov visited Washington.
The Russian jet came as close as 20 feet to the American aircraft and remained that close for five minutes, a U.S. defense official told Fox News.
The Russian jet was carrying six air-to-air missiles under its wings, making this episode “highly provocative,” one official told Fox News.
It is very rare for a Russian jet to intercept a U.S. aircraft while visibly armed, officials said.
Later Thursday, a Russian Su-24 attack jet flew into South Korea’s Air Defense Zone prompting the South Korean military to scramble two F-16 fighter jets to the Sea of Japan.