The U.S. Naval Academy Midshipmen have taken to the skies in an early assault on their Army brethren dubbed “Operation Black Knight Falling,” with a kind of psychological operations mission that would make many an intelligence officer proud.

In an official statement released Tuesday, the Naval Academy confirmed that on Monday midshipmen took to the skies and bombarded their cadet rivals at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point with “Beat Army” and “Fly Navy” leaflets…along with some ping pong balls.

The stealthy midshipmen peppered “The Apron” at West Point, causing Army cadets to break formation and run for cover, at least according to the official Navy account.

Five midshipmen led three flight crews for the Piper PA028 Cherokee Warriors. The route took them down the Hudson River Corridor, a pass around the Statute of Liberty and then home to the “better service academy” along the Severn River to Annapolis, Maryland.

And as the swabbies were quick to note in their official communique, Navy currently leads Army 62-53-7 and holds a 45-40-4 record against Army when playing against the Black Knights in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the site of this year’s matchup on December 10.

A few extra numbers that the sailors included to rub at little extra salt, Navy holds an 11-2 record against the Black Knights when they’ve played on Lincoln Financial Field and has won 18 of the past 23 games against Army.

Note: This article has been updated to include additional images shared by the U.S. Naval Academy and a corrected date for the 2022 Army-Navy Game.

Observation Post is the Military Times one-stop shop for all things off-duty. Stories may reflect author observations.

Todd South has written about crime, courts, government and the military for multiple publications since 2004 and was named a 2014 Pulitzer finalist for a co-written project on witness intimidation. Todd is a Marine veteran of the Iraq War.

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