I have a question about NATO paint schemes that has been bugging me for awhile now. I've noted while looking through the db that most NATO fighter aircraft are painted in some variation of air-superiority gray - some lighter, some darker, some with a faint gray camo pattern and so on. Of course there are the occasional colorful examples, but these are most one-of schemes worn for a definite time only, or schemes for special deployments.
Now I wonder is this a rule, or can a NATO member country paint its combat aircraft in some other scheme that would be standardized throughout the country's entire force? In particular, normal woodland camo? (the question came about when I was wondering how'd the present camo scheme worn by Croatian AF MiG-21s and some Mi-8s look on the F-16 and Gripen). I've noted that the Cro AF has already started repainting some Mi-8s and An-32s into the overall gray scheme.