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Shades of the Cold War, Not: NORAD has acknowledged that it dispatched three pairs of fighters from USAF and Canadian Air Force units to intercept Russian bombers that flew into North America’s Air Defense Identification Zone near Alaska. F-15s from Elemendorf AFB, Alaska and CF-18 fighter aircraft from Canada launched late on Sept. 28, but NORAD tapped the USAF F-15s to verify the identity of Tu-95 Bear heavy bombers that were part of an annual Russian Air Force exercise. According to a NORAD statement, the Russian bombers never entered US or Canadian airspace. The Russians had notified American officials about the exercise.