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Why the Air Force's Lightest Fighter Is Its Most Effective

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Why the Air Force's Lightest Fighter Is Its Most Effective

Short | 01:35

The F-16 Fighting Falcon has a take-off weight of just 20,000 pounds, less than half the weight of the F-15. But as aerial opponents soon discover, lighter doesn't mean lesser.

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It's fast, it's acrobatic, and it's built to get in your face before you even know it's there. The F-16 Fighting Falcon is the lightest fighter in the Air Force inventory, and ushered in a new breed of dogfighter. Witness its origins during the Vietnam War, as the U.S. military raced to create a fighter that could hold its own against the Russian's MiG. Then see how it evolved over the decades, adapted in order to stay relevant, and continued to soar to become the undisputed king of the multirole fighters.

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