President Lyndon B. Johnson announces the existence of the Lockheed A-11, with a cruising speed of more than Mach 3 at altitudes above 70,000 feet. (Use of the designation A-11 to refer to the Air Force’s YF-12A was deliberate to cloud the existence of the CIA’s A-12, a single-seat reconnaissance aircraft that had been flying in secret and was the actual basis for the two-seat YF-12.) Only three YF-12A interceptors are built, and the SR-71 program for the Air Force takes precedence.
In a nighttime ceremony contrived to continue concealment of many of its features, the new B-21 bomber rolled out of Northrop Grumman's Palmdale, Calif. plant Dec. 2. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the aircraft's advanced technology represents "deterrence, the American way."