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Re: F-22 Raptor

Sam Girouard wrote:
> It may interest some of you that, for the first time, a major piece of 
> military hardware has been named after a dinosaur. Today the first F-22 
> "Raptor" tactical fighter, for the United States Air Force, was "rolled 
> out" amidst much fanfare at the Lockheed plant in Marietta. I'm not 
> sure if they were referring to the dinosaur or the bird of prey, but 
> I'm fairly sure it's the former.

I wouldn't be.  I'd like it to be so, but I don't think it is.  The
United States Air Force has a long-established habit of naming aircraft
after birds, going at least back to the late 1930s and the P-40
Warhawk.  In more recent times we've seen the EF-111 Raven, SR-71
Blackbird, F-15 Eagle, F-16 Falcon, and F-117 Nighthawk.  I think it
very likely that the F-22 'Raptor' is intended to mean the bird, not the

-- JSW