(Image: YouTube screenshot, via Aviation Explorer)
Pakistan may have allowed China to inspect the remains of a stealth helicopter that crashed during the raid on Osama bin Laden‘s compound in Abbottabad, it has been reported. A U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said: “We have reason to suspect China was given access but we cannot confirm it definitively.” Pakistan condemned the allegations, calling them a “malicious campaign” by foreign news agencies against Pakistan’s security forces. China, meanwhile, declined to comment.
If U.S. concerns are correct, it wouldn’t be the first time high-tech American weaponry had found its way into unfriendly hands. Pakistan is believed to have allowed Chinese officials to examine its U.S.-built F-104 Starfighters at the height of the Vietnam War. Meanwhile, an F-117 shot down during the Kosovo War reportedly found its way to Russia. The canopy (above) is on display at the Museum of Aviation in Belgrade. Since that time, a full size replica stealth fighter have reportedly surfaced in China, while the U.S. has operated a decades-long programme to exploit foreign military technology.