US Air Force Europe claims that an unusually shaped flight path made by pilots of a KC-135 Stratotanker is purely coincidental. Last week, a website called Flightradar24, dedicated to tracking aircrafts and their routes worldwide, cited a United States Air Force flight with a path shaped suspiciously like a penis pointing directly at a Russian Naval base in Syria. This situation garnered more attention than usual given the increasingly volatile relationship between the United States and Russia.
The incident was initially reported by the Italian newspaper, La Repubblica, which wrote that the flight pattern “is unequivocally that of a penis.” Quickly, the news became the target of memes and pundits.
A spokesperson for the Air Force stated, “at this time, we do not believe the crew acted inappropriately, flying a refueling orbit consistent with requirements that met the needs of receiver aircraft.” The flight was said to be a refueling flight between Syria and Cyprus.
As of yet, no disciplinary actions have been announced, nor are they likely to be.
Whether intentional or coincidental, this is not the first time the US military has flown phallic shaped flight patterns. In October 2018, two Marines were disciplined for flying a penis-shaped pattern over Southern California skies. The Navy, and Air Force, have also had other similar instances.