The following text from Aviation Week is not unique to the aircraft
06/05/1961. Northrop still hopes to find a market for its N-156 lightweight
supersonic development of the T-38 trainer as an interceptor and
fighter-bomber, particularly in small countries with limited military
budgets. In negotiations with USAF, Northrop offered a firm fixed
price of $450,000 based on a minimum order of 650 aircraft.
09/02/1963. First production version of the Northrop F-5A fighter is fitted
with seven external stores stations.... Previous aircraft, carrying
identification numbers FA-987 (pictured above) and FA-988 were
prototypes built under the N-156 program. The production airplane has
now entered flight testing at Edwards AFB, California, USA.
01/17/1966. Northrop F-5A jet fighters on Project "Skoshi Tiger"
flew 1,438 sorties over South Vietnam and delivered 2,890,000 lb
(1,310,882 kg) of ordnance on
Communist Viet Cong targets during the first nine weeks of flight
operations. Flight evaluation of the F-5 by USAFs Tactical Air
Command actually began during Project Sparrowhawk at Elgin AFB, Florida, USA,
between April 15 and July 15, 1965. Before the evaluation had been
completed, Defense Department gave its approval for Project "Skoshi
Tiger" in Vietnam. First combat sorties were flown 4 hrs. after
arrival at Bien Hoa.... One aircraft was lost December, 16.