Tim Blair


New Criterion



Saturday, August 14, 2004

Wonder what's behind the watery "US-drafted" thirty day licence to kill granted by the UN to the government of the Sudan.

Could it be this?
Although its population remains horribly impoverished, Sudan has used its substantial oil revenues to more than double the size of its air force since 2000. Over the past four years, Sudan has purchased at least 34 new fighter jets from China, including a dozen Shenyang F-7 supersonic jets. Russia has already supplied Sudan with a large number of MiG-24 Hind helicopter gunships, and it recently sold Sudan a dozen fourth-generation MiG-29 fighter jets, which are considered to be on par with the most advanced U.S. fighters. Both China and
Russia have supplied Sudan with modern radar stations
for command and control.
It is not clear who flies Sudan's more advanced warplanes, and some have suggested that Russian mercenary pilots may be involved.