Private military company Draken International, which trains pilots for the US Air Force, has begun hiring instructors with flight experience on F-16 fighters in Romania. This is probably related to the training of Ukrainian pilots. This is reported by Militarnyi.
In job offers on the Draken International website, the deployment base is indicated as the 86th airbase of the Romanian Air Force near the city of Borča, 130 km east of Bucharest. This is the base of the 53rd fighter squadron of the Romanian Air Force “Warhawks”, which is armed with F-16 fighters. It is here that they plan to deploy a center for the training of Ukrainian military pilots and technicians.
Among the specified vacancies: instructor pilots, heads of aircraft maintenance crews; maintenance planners and supervisors; avionics and electrical engineering. Minimum experience for all positions – 5 years of work with the F-16. For pilots, 2,000+ hours of flight time in the F-16, with a minimum of 500+ hours as an instructor.
The duration of the job offer is from 3 to 19 months, so the training of Ukrainian pilots and technicians will take approximately this time. It is likely that the technicians will be trained in a shorter time frame.
But, according to the vice president of international relations of Lockheed Martin Ray Pizzelli, although the training of Ukrainian pilots at F-16 will start in August 2023, training in Romania will start only at the end of 2024.
Draken International is an American private military company that trains aircraft pilots and acts as a hypothetical adversary during exercises, complementing the well-known Aggressor squadron. Draken International owns the world’s largest private fleet of combat aircraft (more than 130 aircraft), consisting of A-4 Skyhawks and Aero L-159 ALCA combat aircraft, Dassault Mirage F1, MiG-21bis, Atlas Cheetah and F-16 Fighting Falcons.
The founder and CEO of Draken International, billionaire Jared Isaacman, flies his own fighter jets. In addition, he is a commercial astronaut who has already flown into space on the SpaceX Inspiration4 mission, which he himself sponsored, and is currently preparing for a mission Polaris Dawn, which will launch in September 2023 and is also paid for by Isaacman.