Russian Tu-160 strategic bombers land in Venezuela for ‘combined operational flights’
[Old caption: I'm not sure what all the other aircraft are doing in this video, but we see a Tu-160 landing at the end, supposedly in Venezuela.]
Repurposed from the Google translation of the Russian blurb that came with this video:
Ten thousand miles in thirteen hours. The crews of two RussianTu-160 strategic bombers took off from Engels air base and landed at the airport in Maiquetia Venezuela. The route passed over Norway, the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. While over Norway the Russian's were accompanied by two F-16 fighters. The Ministry of Defense in particular pointed out that all the flights were carried out in strict accordance with international regulations on the use of airspace.Engels air base is across the Volga River from Saratov in Southwest Russia. A direct line between the two places on Google maps is only 6,800 miles. If Norway was the only European country they flew over, they would have had to go 1,500 miles North to avoid the rest of Europe. That's a lot of jet fuel. Dividing distance by time I get 770 MPH, which is supersonic. I kind of doubt whether they ever went supersonic on this flight. I don't think the fuel budget would accommodate those kind of shenanigans.
Update March 2020. Replaced missing video with one from 2018. Near as I can tell Russia has been flying Tu-160's to Venezuela since 2011.