While the United States celebrated Independence Day, two pairs of Russian bombers flew off the coast of California and Alaska — forcing the Air Force to scramble fighter jets to intercept both flights, two senior defense officials tell Fox News. The first incident occurred at 10:30 a.m. ET on July 4 off the coast of Alaska, Fox News is told. Two U.S. Air Force F-22 jets were scrambled from their base in Alaska to intercept two Tupolev Tu-95 long-range strategic bombers, capable of carrying nuclear weapons.
The second incident occurred at 11:00 a.m. ET also on July 4, off the central coast of California. Two F-15s from an undisclosed location were scrambled to intercept another pair of Tu-95 Bear bombers. A spokesman for NORAD would not confirm if either pair of bombers was armed. FULL REPORT