During the first years of the Cold War, the United States Air Force's Strategic Air Command had a simple defense strategy. If the conflict ever turned hot, they would have in their ranks fighter and nuclear bomber planes so fast that they would be uncatchable.
It was envisioned that these innovative aircraft would be able to dash into the Soviet Union and China territories at speeds and altitudes that enemy missiles wouldn't be able to reach. To achieve this, they needed an incredibly fast plane with a radical design that could give one hell of a show. As an answer to their needs, Convair gave them the world's first operational supersonic bomber, the B-58 "Hustler."
The Hustler was the model plane for a new era of fantastic aircraft. With its shiny, attention-grabbing armor, sleek delta-wing design, roaring takeoff, and notorious sonic boom, the B-58 was thought to be an ideal projection of American power and strength.
Numerous world records were set by B-58s, some of which still stand. But 22% of the built Hustlers were destroyed in unfortunate incidents. Even the most skilled pilots were terrified to fly it. And the Soviet Air Force threatened its future in combat before it even began. In the Hustlers' case, anti-aircraft technology improved faster than its supersonic speed.
VIDEO HERE (13 minutes)