Through the 1960s, and unlike MiG, Sukhoi continued developing its ‘Fitters’, resulting in an entire family of airframes, equipped with ever better avionics and more powerful engines. Its Su-7BMKs (ASCC/NATO-codename ‘Fitter-A’) entered service with Egypt in 1966, Syria and Iraq in 1967, followed by Algeria a year later. In 1972–1973, Su-17, and then Su-20 – the second generation of this design, and the first equipped with variable-sweep wing – entered service in Egypt, followed by Iraq and Syria. Finally, in 1978–1979, the third and final generation – including variants such as the Su-22, Su-22M, Su-22M-3, and Su-22M-4 (ASCC/NATO-codenames ‘Fitter F/G/J/K’, respectively) – entered service in Iraq, followed by Libya, Syria, and Yemen. Highly appreciated – and often outright beloved – by their pilots and ground crews alike, they formed the backbone of the fighter-bomber fleets of these six air forces, and saw action in about a dozen different wars.
Richly illustrated with a host of exclusive photographs and custom-drawn color profiles, Fitters of the Middle East is the first title ever offering a comprehensive and inclusive operational history of ‘Fitters’ with six major air forces. As such it is an indispensable single-point source of reference.