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Real-life Tiger Force?


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So awhile back the NATO F-104 Fighter jet was mentioned in a thread about Tiger Force. I just happened to be looking around youtube for some old G.I. Joe commercials and found a video posted by someone in the Greek Air Force showing off the F-104 "Hellenic Tiger", which you can all find

. There is also a video of the plane's first flight that is a bit longer. And if you need something to compare, try this
of the original Tiger Force commercial c. 1988. As Duke would say, "They're part of Tiger Force now!"


Yo Joe!


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Yep, the yellow and black tiger-stripe scheme has been a occasional staple of NATO demonstrator aircraft for about 30 years now. I first recall seeing pics of it in aviation and model making magazines back in the early 80's--which would fit with it as a inspiration for the GIJOE Tiger Force.

It was never a operational scheme in any sense, just a show scheme for meets and air shows--and, frankly, I always thought it looked just darn cool.



And then there's the famous all black livery on a F-4J Phantom II with the playboy bunny symbol on the tail.....

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Tiger Force Wiki



So, Tiger Force really did exist. What do ya know. Explains where Hasbro got the idea for repaints.




Crap, War Crimes?! I suppose that's what happens when you spend too much time behind enemy lines trying to "out guerrilla the guerillas"... I think the Joe line was mostly based on the "Helenic Tiger" paint job or another NATO one like it, and the function of Duke's squad (Flint out-ranked him this time) was based on a historical footnote of an elite Airborne unite back in 'Nam. I just wish Hasbro did a little more research, though it doesn't look like the allegations were made public for another 20 years. It would have been cool to see the Tiger Rat with the WWII British Tiger Force colors of white over black. Thanks for the link, though. Great research.

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