Turkish military aviation


Turkey, situated in the extreme south-eastern corner of NATO's territory, was a key NATO ally during the Cold War. The country straddles the strategically important Bosporus which connects the Mediterranean with the Black Sea. Furthermore, Turkey is quite close to the volatile Middle East. Therefore, it's Armed Forces are not only important to the country itself. Today's Turk Hava Kuvvetleri (Turkish Air Force) flies a mix of new F-16's and ageing F-4 and F-5 aircraft. Apart from that, the Army and the Jandarma (Military Police) have aircraft of their own. Below a selection of the aircraft of the Turkish Air Force, Army Aviation and Jandarma.

All pictures (c) Hans Rolink.

Bellanca Citabria 10129

One of the more unusual types to have flown in Turkish military service was the Bellanca Citabria. Better known as a private plane, the type was used by the Army for observation work.
It was seen at Ankara-Etimesgut on 26 April 1999.

Mil Mi.17 J792M19
Rarely seen at all and thus a real boon for the photographers was this Jandarma Mil Mi.17. The Jandarma is a paramilitary Police service in Turkey which operates it's own air fleet. This Mi.17 was seen at Ankara-Güvercinlik on 27 April 1999

AB.205A J-4416
Another helicopter type flying with the Jandarma and also seen at Güvercinlik is the Agusta AB.205A, an example of which is J-4416.
UH-60A J-1902
The other important helicopter type in Jandarma service is the UH-60A. This Blackhawk, J-1902, was also seen at Güvercinlik op 27 April 1999.
AH-1W 10603
The Turkish Army Aviation, Turk Kara Kuvvetleri, is predominantly a helicopter force. It's teeth are amongst others formed by the Bell AH-1W Cobra. This AH-1W was seen on 27 April 1999 at it's Güvercinlik base.

F-16C 86-0070
Previously known as Mürted, the home base of this F-16C 86-0070 is now known as Akinci. This base is home to 4 Ana Jet Us Komutanligi and the F-16C is part of 141 Filo.
F-4E 67-0342
The airbase of Konya, close to the historic city with the same name, houses 3 Ana Jet Us Komutanligi. 3 AJU is unique in that it operates two different basic types of aircraft, the F-4E Phantom and the F-5. 3 AJU's task is weapons training on these types. Depicted here is F-4E 66-0355 of 132 Filo, taken on 28 April 1999.
F-5A 01405
A line-up of 132 Filo F-5A's at Konya, headed by 01405. Also note the ex Dutch NF-5's in the background.

F-5B 21283
Konya, 28 April 1999. F-5B two-seater 21283 of 132 Filo awaits it's crew for the next flight.
NF-5A 3066
Another ex Dutch KLu NF-5A is 3066. It was one of several turned over to the THK in the early 1990's when the type became redundant in the Netherlands due to the introduction of the F-16. 3066, formerly K-3066, is one of the mounts of the Turk Yildizlari (Turkish Stars) aerobatic team based at Konya.

F-4E 77-0299
F-4E 77-0299 of 111 Filo, part of 1 AJU at Eskisehir, sits in it's blast pen. This picture was taken on 29 April 2001.

T-38A 23719/2-719
T-38A 23719/2-719 of 121 Filo from Izmir-Cigli after completion of it's overhaul at Eskisehir. Overhauling various types of the THK, including F-4's, F-5's and T-38's is another task performed at this base.
F-16C 90-0016
Gone are the days of the Turkish Air Force being a place where NATO partners could dump their obsolete equipment. This Block 40 F-16C, 90-0016 of 161 Filo is fitted with the full AAQ-13/AAQ-14 LANTIRN laser targeting kit. This picture is from Bandirma, home of 6 AJU. The date was 30 April 1999.