That mission was actually quite easy compared to flying in and out of underground tunnels like in the one right before, I hate those!
Numerous ace foes and falling space junk is much easier, even at Ace Difficulty Level using the very fighter you start off with in AC5, the F-5 Tiger.
I played that level and the one before it of course with an HAWKs squadron at Ace Difficulty, just to show up some pals of mine who did the same thing using planes like the FALKEN, the X-02, the Su-37, etc on the minimum difficulty level, with which I was not impressed. So I did my best Captain Bartlett impersonation to get there attention before playing my video of me playing the last two levels as Ace Difficulty using F-5s, the very plane you start off with.
You should see a youtube vid I found, the poster is playing AC0 The Belkan War, fighting Pixy on the last level using the J35 Draken on Ace level and won, that was so impressive I decided I wanted to do it too.