Released: Dec 10, 1997
The aircraft is assigned to the 45th Reconnaissance Squadron at Offutt. The OC-135B is an observation aircraft which flies unarmed observation flights over participating parties of the Open Skies Treaty.
The Open Skies Treaty was first proposed by President Dwight Eisenhower to Soviet Premier Nikita Krushchev at the Geneva Conference of 1955. The Soviets rejected the concept and it lay dormant for a generation.
In May 1989, the U.S. reintroduced the idea of Open Skies as an instrument of confidence building.
The treaty enhances mutual understanding and confidence by giving all participating countries, regardless of size, a direct role in gathering information about military forces and activities of concern to them. It permits short-notice, unrestricted aerial observation flights over the territory of each signatory.
A board of officers will investigate the incident. (Courtesy of Air Combat Command News Service)