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IRBM / Cruise Missile Attacks Against US Facilities Throughout Iraq

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IRBM / Cruise Missile Attacks Against US Facilities Throughout Iraq

Old 8th Jan 2020, 18:30
  #61 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by SASless View Post
US Intelligence agencies had advance warning of the Iranian Missile attack it appears.

Reports suggest intercepts of "chatter" inside Iraq and Iran gave notice of the coming attack.

That comes as no great surprise considering today's technology and capabilities it provides in certain forms of intel gathering.

Also....no doubt there are Humint Sources available to the various Western Powers that could also be providing useful information.

I wonder if they are reading the posts here at PPRuNe.....to see what the strategic experts among us are saying?
I imagine there are several camps. Those who last served decades ago in different theatres but think they are experts of ME geopolitics. Those who have or are serving currently in the ME who wish to comment or those who have served or are currently serving in the ME who lurk and variations thereof. Either way Iím sure policy makers donít come here for advice.
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 20:08
  #62 (permalink)  
 
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Commercial satellite imagery of the damage at Al Assad Airbase, Iraq.



See video at following link.

https://www.space.com/iran-missile-a...te-photos.html
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Old 9th Jan 2020, 01:46
  #63 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by John4321 View Post
Money. They wonít fly around until told that they cannot take the shorter route.
Surely the cost of losing an operating aircraft, the subsequent death compensation claims and the loss of trust in the airline brand in question for the next several years is vastly more expensive than a minor amount of extra jet fuel?
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Old 9th Jan 2020, 07:49
  #64 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by OldnGrounded View Post
Of course. The leadership is already benefiting because this situation has diverted the masses from recent protests against the government. Soleimani, however, was a close associate of the "Supreme Leader," so it's pretty unlikely that the Iranians would have chosen this move if they were seeking a false flag option.
One 'Middle East Specialist' on the radio yesterday was speculating that Soleimani's operations outside Iran (Hezbollah in Syria etc) were too expensive for the Tehran Govt to fund in the ongoing sanctions environment
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Old 9th Jan 2020, 09:55
  #65 (permalink)  
 
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Nice round impact site from the photo above, although looks to be a relatively low yield warhead given the extent of the damage.

Not too far off blatting a couple of chinooks...
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Old 9th Jan 2020, 21:51
  #66 (permalink)  
 
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Were those Chinooks there during the missile attack.....knowing of the advance warning the US Forces had re the attack?
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Old 10th Jan 2020, 02:09
  #67 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by onload View Post
The US is just about to be kicked out of Iraq, many trillion $ down the drain since 2003 for nothing! Leaving the field to the Iranians, the Russians and possibly ISIS. All the anti-iranian protests in Iraq - gone. The anti-government protests in Iran - gone. Iran rebooting their nuclear program. What a waste of money + time... What good intel? Successor to the general named, won't change a thing.

The US isn't going anywhere soon.
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Old 10th Jan 2020, 07:07
  #68 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by SASless View Post
Were those Chinooks there during the missile attack.....knowing of the advance warning the US Forces had re the attack?
I guess the options were to move them out of country (which would have been seen as "quitting" and win for the bad guys) or dispersing them locally - bu t then you have to protect each one and you have small scattered detachments all over the shop just as Iranian backed militias are looking for Americans to attack................................
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Old 10th Jan 2020, 10:55
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The accuracy seems pretty good to me if these were ballistic missiles without terminal guidance, but the warhead effects seem more limited than I would have expected. Has anyone seen anything definitive as to the type of missile used?
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Old 10th Jan 2020, 13:28
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Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
I guess the options were to move them out of country (which would have been seen as "quitting" and win for the bad guys) or dispersing them locally - bu t then you have to protect each one and you have small scattered detachments all over the shop just as Iranian backed militias are looking for Americans to attack................................


Or you simply go flying and stagger your refuels to minimize your exposure.

In the past I have done exactly that in a Chinook on more than one occasion when we had reliable intelligence indicating an attack was imminent.

You do realize there are Operational needs that would probably have had some of the aircraft "working" that night.

No need to make things more complicated than they need to be.....which shoots down so many theories offered at PPRuNe by some.

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Old 10th Jan 2020, 18:44
  #71 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Vzlet View Post
The accuracy seems pretty good to me if these were ballistic missiles without terminal guidance, but the warhead effects seem more limited than I would have expected. Has anyone seen anything definitive as to the type of missile used?
It appears that Qiam and Zolfaghar short range ballistic missile types were used.

Remains of a Qiam that missed Al Asad.



https://missilethreat.csis.org/missile/qiam-1/

https://missilethreat.csis.org/missile/zolfaghar/

https://missilethreat.csis.org/country/iran/

https://www.popularmechanics.com/mil...issile-attack/

Al Asad damage.

Two Defense Department officials told Newsweek that 18 ballistic missiles struck Al Asad Airbase alone. The attacks wrecked one Blackhawk helicopter and damaged a runway air traffic control tower. Three missiles slammed into the base's runway, leaving large craters.

The attacks also "lightly damaged" a MQ-1 Predator Drone and destroyed 10 military tents. Two of Iran's missiles struck the base in Erbil while the remaining two missiles failed to cross the Iraq-Iran border. A senior Defense Department official told Newsweek that no significant damage was reported at Erbil.
https://www.newsweek.com/military-ai...ssiles-1481129

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Old 12th Jan 2020, 07:01
  #72 (permalink)  
 
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One of the British tabloid papers (The Sun) is running a set of pictures under the heading "missile cities" showing some pretty impressive underground facilities.
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Old 12th Jan 2020, 18:40
  #73 (permalink)  
 
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Video of damage at Al Asad.

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/01/11/m...ntl/index.html
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Old 13th Jan 2020, 18:41
  #74 (permalink)  
 
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A BBC video showing damage and interviews with US servicemen.

The comments about two waves of strikes are interesting:

https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-51...anian-missiles




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Old 14th Jan 2020, 06:54
  #75 (permalink)  
 
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Patriot?

The apparent total lack of any defensive fire by the Bases being attacked seems strange.
Were they in ďok let them have their funĒ mode?
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 11:00
  #76 (permalink)  
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No US Patriot or other SAW units deployed on the bases, only drones and SF.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/01/13/middl...ntl/index.html
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 18:45
  #77 (permalink)  
 
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FWIW, I read in a news feed a couple of days back that about 7 months ago the decision was made at "highest levels" that if the opportunity came, Suleimani was to be/could be taken out.
Allegedly, finall call/approval had to come from Oval Office for any proposed chance that arose.
(I'll offer a 50-50 chance that this is how things began, and I'll explain why later).
So, the day came and someone called up and said "we have him, here's our chance (explains plan) and asks "can we go ahead?" and the answer comes back "Affirmative"

Now, that doesn't happen in a vacuum.
Once someone says "get So and So" a whole bunch of other dominos start falling, one of which is to prepare warning orders for a "threat level increase" to coincide with release of Public acknowledgement of the attack.
I'll estimnate that within the hour of the attack at BIAP, everyone in theater would be on a higher alert level/Threatcon, whatever you want to call it: the warning messages would be flying.
All anyone at Al Asad or Balad needed was 'Early Warning says incoming" and people are already primed to haul their butts toward nearest bunker.
Balad seems to have been a favorite spot for rocket and mortar attacks in my day and lately.

That the Iranians tipped of the Iraqis is very credible. They are neighbors, and have a good political reason to say "Hey guys, duck, we are shooting at some Americans on your turf, not really shooting at you" (a short phone call, I imagine)
May or may not have resulted in the Iraqis sending their own tip off "Duck, incoming" to various American counterparts.
(News reports suggest that this was done)

So people headed for the bunkers as soon as the "this is not a drill!" messages got out.
(Whether it went down like this is a guess, but I suspect it was something close to this)

ORAC & KiloB: As to No Patriots ...
When I was in theater over a decade ago. all of the Patriots had long since been sent home.
The risk of missile attack from TBMs or Cruise Missiles was, well, a daily risk. Low but present.
Know where your helmet is, know where your bunker is. Go about your duties.
Can't comment on why and where any Patriots might be at the present; no idea.

OK, about explaining later:
There are these things we used to refer to as time sensitive targets and high value targets.
On a given day or week there was almost a shopping list on the wall.
Associated with that was this ever moving guidance that went something like this:
Scenario 1:
If such and such high value target is spotted, weapons release is pre cleared if all other RoE can be met.
or
Scenario 2:
If such and such high value target is spotted, weapons release after phone home (home being various echelons of command up the chain) may be cleared providing all other RoE etc ...
or

Scenario 3:
If such and such high value target is spotted, Do Not Shoot! This is a New Week! Last week's shoot order was cancelled. Repeat, do not shoot

I suspect that a "Hey, we spotted (this guy)" event happened, and something like scenario 2 transpired.

But given how long it's been, and how things have changed on the ground, there may be a whole new system / logic tree in place.
I look at the calendar and realize, it's been a while.

Last edited by Lonewolf_50; 14th Jan 2020 at 19:08.
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 02:31
  #78 (permalink)  
 
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Hi guys,

Does anybody have a flight radar picture of the airliners over Iraq and in the vicinity of the two targets? I am curious to see if any were close by.
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 20:01
  #79 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by tcasblue View Post
Hi guys,

Does anybody have a flight radar picture of the airliners over Iraq and in the vicinity of the two targets? I am curious to see if any were close by.
The earliest reported time of the missile strike was at 1:34 AM local time on 8th January. That would be 2234 UTC on 7th January.

The attack lasted over two hours so it is difficult to narrow down exact times of missile volleys.

Royal Jordanian RJA800 from Amman to Sulaimaniyah had a flight path that passed over Ain-Assad Airbase by 2311 UTC (0211 AM local).



The first missiles fell at 1:34 a.m. They were followed by three more volleys, spaced out by more than 15 minutes each. The attack lasted over two hours.
https://edition.cnn.com/2020/01/13/m...ntl/index.html

When the first fusillade slammed down at roughly 1:35 a.m., while other members of his company were either in a bunker or some kind of shelter away from the soft-topped confines of Scarecrow Compound, Kilpatrick was still out in the open making last-minute checks.

Two hours and five fusillades later, the all-clear signal came through.
https://www.latimes.com/world-nation...er-iran-strike

Tracklog of RJA800

https://flightaware.com/live/flight/.../ORSU/tracklog

Last edited by TEEEJ; 15th Jan 2020 at 20:29.
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Old 17th Jan 2020, 06:26
  #80 (permalink)  
 
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And now there's reports starting to come out that the nil injured US service men statement isn't accurate.
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-01-...imani/11877814
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