The F-86 Sabre marked a turning point in the design, performance and combat effectiveness of the jet fighter. Sleek, fast and maneuverable, the F-86 is arguably the first modern jet fighter in the West. Prior to this, aircraft such as the P-80 Shooting Star, F-9F Panther and the F2H Banshee all used conventional straight wing design which limited agility in high speed dogfights. The F-86, which holds the distinction of being the first US swept wing fighter, was the perfect combination of swept wing aerodynamics, speed and firepower in a war winning fighter.
From the start of the Korean War in 1950, the straight winged propellor and jet fighters of the UN forces found themselves completely at the mercy of the swept wing MiG15's flown by Soviet pilots. In April 1951, this disadvatage reached a crisis point and the US suspended air operations over Korea for a short period.
Immediately the F-86 was committed to the battle and very quickly turned the tide of the air war in the UN favor, By the end of the Korean war, the kill ratio of the F-86 was almost 10:1 and of the 41 US Pilots to become "aces" in that war, all but one did so flying the F-86.
The F-86 went on to serve with great distinction with many air forces across the world with almost 30 countries using them before the last left military service in 1994.