North Korea’s 1940s Bomber Still Serving 2022

North Korea’s 1940s Bomber Still Serving 2022 | Frontline Videos

YouTube / Mark Felton Productions


North Korea’s B-52

The Korean People’s Army Air Force is 110,000 strong and operates 950 aircraft in 2022. In total, they are expected to have 35 MiG-29s (their most modern fighter), backed up by 26 MiG-21s and 120 Chongdu J-7s (Chinese-built copy of the MiG-21).

And among its training aircraft are 15 Soviet-era MiG-15s, one of the world’s oldest jet fighters. But that doesn’t stop there, as they also have the Ilyushin Il-28 medium bomber, which has been in service since the ‘50s.

The Soviet-era Il-28 was built in late 1947 and performed its maiden flight in July 1948. Currently, North Korea still has 80 Il-28s, so why are they still operating a jet bomber that old?

Because it provides North Korea with a bomber capable of attacking South Korea and Western Japan conventionally. 

In a way, it’s the same reason why the US has held on to the B-52 for this long. Even the Russians did it with their Tupolev Tu-95 Bear, which was all from the Soviet era. 

Regardless, the Il-28 remains the world’s oldest jet bomber in active military service today.


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