WASHINGTON – Iraq shot down a U.S. Navy F/A-18 Hornet with a surface-to-air missile Wednesday, military officials said.
There was no immediate word on the fate of the pilot. A statement from U.S. Central Command said the plane went down at 3:45 p.m. EST.
It was the first American airplane shot down during the war on Iraq. The Iraqis on Wednesday shot down an Army helicopter and have downed several pilotless surveillance drones.
Navy and Marine pilots fly the F/A-18 Hornet from aircraft carriers. The supersonic jets are armed with a 20mm cannon and can carry a wide range of bombs and missiles.