How many aircraft have been shot down by the British RAF and the USAF since WWII?

Dear Mr History,

Most grateful if you could settle a small Mess wager. How many aircraft have been shot down in combat by the British RAF since the end of WWII, not counting Blue on Blue, and how many by the USAF? We are betting that the answer is Zero for the RAF, as all the planes shot down by the British have all been by the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy. We think the Fleet Air Arm also contributed to ‘Top Gun’ or so Rowland White thinks.




Dear Mr. Ade,

As far as I know, all British aerial victories have been scored by Royal Navy aircraft, such as the Hawker Fury (which bagged a MiG-15 over Korea) and the BAe Sea Harrier (while RAF Harriers were engaged in ground attack). Needless to say, the USAF has had infinitely more opportunities to shoot things down, and it has. But on the subject of opportunities and their bearing on the matter, how many planes has the USAF shot down in air-to-air combat since September 11, 2001?



Jon Guttman
Research Director
World History Group
More Questions at Ask Mr. History 


3 Responses

  1. lyndon

    The royal australian air force flew meteors (british aircraft) during the Korean war.
    There may have been Royal air Force guys on exchange duty in 77 Squadron (australian).
    The Meteors had a woeful record against the MIG’s. They were then relegated to ground attack.

  2. Paul Johnson

    I think we all forget about the Iraqi Mig-29 which was destryoed by a Tornado Gr1 on a raid on Talil, the mig-29 was wheels up having just taken off when it was hit by a minelet from jp233 and exploded. That was recorded as an Air to Air Kill.


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